Kurt Baum          (Preiser 89741)
Item# V1793
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Product Description

Kurt Baum          (Preiser 89741)
V1793. KURT BAUM: Arias from Stabat Mater (Rossini); Norma, Guglielmo Tell, La Juive, Les Huguenots, Faust, Il Trovatore, Forza, Aïda, La Gioconda, Pagliacci, Manon Lescaut, La Boheme, Tosca, Turandot & Der Rosenkavalier. (Austria) Preiser 89741. - 717281897419

CRITIC REVIEWS:

“Zinka never paused to consider the effect her ‘Milanovisms’ might have on others. She once saw very religious Kurt Baum crossing himself before the third act of TROVATORE. Zinka just looked at him and said, ‘If you don’t know it Baum, Gott ain’t gonna help you.”

- Anna-Lisa Björling, JUSSI, p.261



“A dramatic tenor alternately gauche and exciting, Kurt Baum filled a crucial spot for the Metropolitan Opera and other houses without ever quite having attained star status. Long after his nominal retirement from the stage, he continued to make concert appearances. Noted throughout his career for stentorian top notes, he later wrote several treatises on preservation of the voice and singing well in old age. Whatever his deficiencies as an artist, he was an exemplar of longevity. Baum spent his high school and college years in Cologne, Germany, before entering medical school at Prague University in 1927. During this period, Baum engaged in a number of athletic activities, becoming the amateur boxing champion of Czechoslovakia. He also evinced a strong interest in music. Urged by friends to sing professionally, Baum left medical school and enrolled at Berlin's Music Academy in 1930. By 1933, Baum was sufficiently well prepared to win the Vienna International Singing Competition, taking first prize among 700 contestants. Heard by the Intendant of the Zurich Opera, Baum was engaged for that company and made his début there in 1933 singing in Alexander von Zemlinsky's DER KREIDEKREIS. After singing a variety of lyric rôles at Zurich, Baum was engaged the following year by the Deutsches Theater for a succession of more dramatic rôles. Feeling the need for further study, Baum traveled to Italy to work with Eduardo Garbin in Milan and with faculty at Rome's Accademia Santa Cecilia. Fortified with additional technical expertise, Baum sang in many of Europe's leading houses in Paris, Vienna, Budapest, Monte Carlo, and at Salzburg. Heard in Monte Carlo by the director of the Chicago Opera, Baum was engaged and made his American début in Chicago on 2 November, 1939, singing Radames to the Aïda of Rose Bampton. He was heard in subsequent seasons as Don José and Manrico. Meanwhile, Baum joined the Metropolitan Opera, making his début on 27 November, 1941, as the Italian Singer in DER ROSENKAVALIER. In this short but memorable part, his talents were well matched to the role's requirements. For the next quarter century, Baum sang the spinto repertory at the Metropolitan to reviews both complimentary and critical. When the company mounted WOZZECK for the first time in 1959, Baum found a highly congenial rôle in the preening Drum Major. After WWII, Baum returned to Europe and made his début at La Scala as Manrico and re-established relations with several other major companies.”

- Erik Eriksson, allmusic.com