OP2792. DIE MEISTERSINGER, Live Performance, 1958, w.Cluytens Cond. Bayreuth Festival Ensemble; Otto Wiener, Josef Traxel, Hans Hotter, Gerhard Stolze, Fritz Uhl, Toni Blankenheim, Eberhard Wächter, Elisabeth Grümmer, etc. (E.U.) 4-Myto 00187. Long out-of-print, Final Sealed Copy! - 8014399501873
"Otto Wiener was an Austrian baritone, notable for his performances in the operas of Richard Wagner. He was born in Vienna, joined the Vienna Boys' Choir at the age of six, and started his adult career as a concert singer before making his stage debut in 1953 at Graz in the title-role of SIMON BOCCANEGRA. He subsequently sang with the opera companies at Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Berlin and performed at the Vienna State Opera from 1957 onwards and at the Bavarian State Opera from 1960. He appeared at the Salzburg Festival in 1955 and sang there in the stage premiï¿½re of Frank Martin's LE MYSTERE DE LA NATIVITE.
Wiener first appeared at the Bayreuth Festival in 1957, and sang there until 1963 as Hans Sachs in DIE MEISTERSINGER, Gunther in GOTTERDAMMERUNG, Wotan in DAS RHEINGOLD and in the title-role of DER FLIEGENDE HOLLANDER. In 1962 he performed the role of Sachs at both the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and the Metropolitan Opera. In 1964, he appeared at the Glyndebourne Festival Opera in the role of La Roche in CAPRICCIO.
Wiener was one of the highest and brightest of the successful heldenbaritones of the 1950s and 60s. He was cast in roles usually reserved for deeper, darker voices because his technique was so relaxed, well-projected, and free. Wiener retired in 1976 and died in Vienna."
Josef Traxel was a German operatic tenor, particularly associated with Mozart roles and the German repertory. He studied at the Darmstadt Conservatory, but was conscripted into the army before beginning his career. However, he was able to make his debut in Mainz, as Don Ottavio, in 1942, while on sick-leave from the army. After internment in Britain as a prisoner of war, he returned to Germany and resumed his career in Nuremberg in 1946, where he remained until 1952, and then joined the Stuttgart Opera. The same year he appeared at the Salzburg Festival, where he sang the role of Mercury at the premiere of Richard Strauss' DIE LIEBE DER DANAE. In 1954, he first appeared at the Bayreuth Festival as Froh in RHEINGOLD, returning as Walther in TANNHï¿½USER, as Erik in DER FLIEGENDE HOLLï¿½NDER, the young sailor in TRISTAN UND ISOLDE, a Knight in PARSIFAL, and in 1957, as Stolzing in DIE MEISTERSINGER VON Nï¿½RNBERG. He was also a frequent guest at the Munich State Opera and the Vienna State Opera, also appearing in the Netherlands and Switzerland.
He possessed a finely poised tenor with an unusually high tessitura; his wide repertoire ranged from Belmonte to Siegmund, and he was also active in concert, often appearing in Bach's oratorios. From 1963 on he was a teacher at the Stuttgart Musikhochschule."
- Zillah Dorset Akron
"Of all the singers of the 20th century, the man whose voice and presence were most capable of conveying the essence of the archetypal father was bass-baritone Hans Hotter. Blessed with a huge, resonant instrument that could be scaled down to an intimate whisper, the man could sound invincible one minute and vulnerable the next. No matter what he sang, Hotter communicated a profundity and depth of spirit that seemed rooted in a primordial place of holiness and sagacity. If you can imagine a man whose voice could convincingly express the power of a God, the wisdom of a sage, and the humanity of an open-hearted mortal, you can begin to hear the sound of Hans Hotter in your head.
In the world of opera, Richard Wagner's Wotan, the God of Valhalla, is perhaps the greatest Daddy of them all. In DIE WALKÜRE, he has no choice but to punish his favorite daughter Brünnhilde for her sin of intervening in the affairs of mortals. But even as he puts his beloved daughter to sleep, protecting her with a ring of fire, he makes sure that love can dowse the flames and return her to life. It was the Wotan of Hans Hotter, more than of any other recorded singer, that most fully expressed the tortured godliness of this strangely mortal immortal.
At the same time as Hotter dominated the opera stage as Wotan, he became known as a supreme interpreter of German art song. With his voice pared down as necessary, Hotter's lieder interpretations evinced the same strength and surety that thundered through him when he strode across the stage carrying sword and shield."
- Jason Serinus
“André Cluytens was among the leading French conductors of his time. His father, Alphonse, was conductor at the Royal French Theater of Antwerp. André became his assistant and a choirmaster there. When an illness prevented Alphonse from conducting, André made his performance début in 1927. After that experience he devoted his efforts to orchestral and opera conducting rather than choral work, and he became a resident conductor in the house.
In 1932 he accepted a position as the musical director of orchestral concerts at the Capitole de Toulouse, and he became a French citizen. In 1935 was appointed the opera director in Lyons. He was an assistant of Josef Krips in a summer series in Vichy and, once again, was called on to substitute when that conductor could not perform. He became musical director of the Lyons Opera in 1942, conductor of the Conservatoire Concerts and the French National Radio Orchestra in Paris in 1943, and in 1944 conducted at the Opéra de Paris. From 1947 to 1953 he was music director of the Paris Opéra-Comique, and in 1949 was appointed as principal conductor of the Conservatory Concerts. He retained that position for the rest of his life. In 1955 he was invited to conduct LOHENGRIN at the Bayreuth Festival, the first French person to appear on the podium there. He débuted in the United States in 1956, and in Britain in 1958, when he substituted for Otto Klemperer. He formed a close relationship with the Vienna State Opera, which he first conducted in 1956, becoming a permanent guest conductor in 1959. In 1960 he became conductor of the Belgian National Orchestra in Belgium, also holding that post until his death. He also formed a close link with the Berlin Philharmonic, with which he made a notable recording of the Beethoven symphonies. However, he was primarily known for French repertoire, premiering works by Françaix, Jolivet, Messiaen, Milhaud, Tomasi, Büsser, and Bondeville. He was invited back to Bayreuth in 1965.”
- Joseph Stevenson, allmusic.com