V1652. HERMANN PREY, w.Ackermann, Schüchter, Mälzer & Grüber Cond.: Arias & Duets (w.Rothenberger, Hildebrand & Kohn) from Zauberflöte, Così fan Tutte, Barbiere, Königskinder, Die Tote Stadt, Der Zigeunerbaron, Hans Heiling, Zar und Zimmermann, Der Wildschütz, Das Nachtlager in Granada, Der Tompeter von Säkkingen & Pagliacci. (Austria) Preiser 93466, recorded 1954-57. Final Copy! - 717281934664
"Though Mr. Prey's voice was a mellow, lyric baritone, he sang with such focused sound and robust projection that he enjoyed an active career in opera. He avoided the heavier Verdi roles, but excelled at Mozart, Gluck, Rossini, and lighter Strauss and Wagner roles. One of his great achievements was Beckmesser in Wagner's MEISTERSINGER, which he sang at the Met in 1993. To his characterization of a town clerk in medieval Nuremberg, typically portrayed as a scheming buffoon, Mr. Prey brought an emotional complexity and light-on-the-feet comic grace that made Beckmesser endearing.
Mr. Prey's voice was ideally suited to lieder, and he left a large and important discography, including songs by Schubert, Schumann, Strauss, Mahler, and Carl Loewe, a neglected 19th-century composer whom Mr. Prey championed. Commenting on Mr. Prey's 1985 recording of Schubert's WINTERREISE with the pianist Philippe Bianconi, The New York Times critic Bernard Holland wrote: ‘This is Schubert singing that does not twist sound for pictorial or dramatic effect but instead creates, with unusual musical clarity and purity of tone, a narrative voice which, though concerned and moved, tells the story first and lives it only indirectly’."
- Anthony Tommasini, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 24 July, 1998
“Hermann Prey was a handsome baritone, warm and pleasing, even and steady. It’s a more beautiful voice than Fischer-Dieskau’s, the only other baritone in his class as a lieder singer. In opera, they also shared the same repertory….He was also one of the best lieder singers of his time, as shown in his recordings of Schubert, Schumann, and Beethoven cycles, and many Loewe ballads.”
- Kurt Moses, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, July/Aug., 2010
“Hermann Prey sang frequently at the Metropolitan Opera between 1960 and 1970 and made his Bayreuth début in 1965. Although he often sang Verdi early in his career, he later concentrated more on Mozart and Richard Strauss. Prey was well known for playing Figaro (Mozart and Rossini), but he played other Mozart roles at least equally often, particularly Papageno and Guillamo. He also played, and recorded, the Count in THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO. Prey possessed a clear, polished tone - darker and deeper-sounding than his slightly older contemporary Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, but equally refined and equally capable of soaring into the tenor range without the smallest suggestion of vocal effort.”
- Ned Ludd