OP0349. DER ROSENKAVALIER, Live Performance, 5 Feb., 1938, w.Bodanzky Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Kerstin Thorborg, Lotte Lehmann, Suzanne Fisher, Emanuel List, Friedrich Schorr, etc. (France) 2-Dante LYS 326/327. Very long out-of-print, Final Rare Copy! - 3421710423267
“The most famous of pre-war Marshallins was unquestionably Lehmann, one of the great Elsas and Sieglindes of her day, who created the lyric soprano role of the Composer in the Vienna premiere of ARIDANE II and the dramatic soprano role of the Dyer’s Wife in DIE FRAU OHNE SCHATTEN. Lehmann’s voice must have developed gradually into the heavier parts, for she is the first of several celebrated ROSENKAVALIER ‘hat-trick’ holders: sopranos who have progressed from Sophie to Octavian to the Marshallin….Lehmann was clearly one of the sopranos who served as inspirational muse to Strauss: in addition to the Composer and Dyer’s Wife, she was also entrusted with the creation of one of his most individual and beloved protagonists, Christine Storch in INTERMEZZO, a thinly disguised portrait of Strauss’ wife Pauline. [One shouldn’t forget that his Arabella was written with LL in mind].
Lehmann’s dramatic conception of the [Marschallin] manages to convince despite her age: she is coquettish with both Octavian and Ochs, using a sly portamento (‘Du, Schatz!’) to convey her amusement at the Mariandel disguise, and she seems more tolerant than most of her successors of her ‘aufgeblasene, schlechte Kerl’ of a cousin. Indeed, from the histrionic point of view, Lehmann maintains the melancholic and frivoluous sides of the Marschallin’s personality in carefully balanced equilibrium: the dry eye much in evidence in her teasing of her lover and remonstrations with Ochs, the wet one in her nostalgic reminiscences of ‘die kleine Resi’ fresh from the convent in the Act 1 monologue and especially in the ‘Heut’ oder morgen’ section the the succeeding duet with Octavian. Long experience of the opera has evidently led to a deep understanding of the Marshallin’s mercurial temperament: her tears are not self-pitying ones and they do not for long dull the twinkle in her eye…”
- Hugh Canning, INTERNATIONAL OPERA COLLECTOR, Spring 1999