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Grieg, Wagner / Flagstad, Sargent, Bbc So


Release Date: 09/19/2006 
Label:  Bbc Legends   Catalog #: 4190   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Richard WagnerEdvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 1 Hours 11 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



GRIEG Spring. The Youth. At Rundarne. Goal. From Monte Pincio. The First Meeting. Hope. A Swan. Eros. I Love Thee. WAGNER Wesendonck Lieder. Tristan und Isolde: Liebestod Kirsten Flagstad (sop); Malcolm Sargent, cond; BBC SO BBC LEGENDS 4190, mono (70:59)


This CD documents Kirsten Flagstad’s September 1957 farewell concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall, in addition to Wagner’s Read more style="font-style:italic">Wesendonck Lieder and “Liebestod” from Tristan und Isolde , recorded in 1953, the year of her legendary studio recording conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler, and one year after her final Covent Garden performance in 1952. It also includes a commemoration of her activities in the 1950s by John Culshaw, the great record producer of the Solti Ring who supervised her final series of Decca-London recordings starting in 1956. Flagstad died in 1962 at the age of 67. The remarkable thing is that her voice never deteriorated significantly until the year before her death. That wondrous instrument had the power of Birgit Nilsson, but far more warmth, and with that, more humanity. She had a surprisingly wide range of operatic repertoire that encompassed 50 roles, including Weber, Johann Strauss, Gluck, Handel, and even Puccini. She also concentrated on Lieder, but the central core of her reputation and repertoire that she was born to sing was Wagner.


In the Grieg orchestral songs recorded here, Flagstad’s pitch stability, tonal richness, and total emotional commitment are obvious, but the huge voice ultimately overpowers these fragile and lovely miniatures, which are better suited to a smaller instrument. The Wesendonck Lieder are similarly subdued and lyrical, but the stylistic proximity to Tristan makes them a perfect fit. “Träume” has never sounded better. Even when singing softly, her sense of latent power is astonishing. As for the “Liebestod,” she has no peer. Sir Malcolm Sargent accompanies Flagstad with remarkable intensity and insight. The sound is mono, but it really doesn’t matter in a recording like this, except to say that the Grieg songs have far more palpable presence. In the final analysis, Flagstad was one of the legitimate wonders of the musical world, and this late recording of her voice, still near its prime, is a treasure.


FANFARE: Arthur Lintgen
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Wesendonck Lieder by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1858; Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/14/1953 
Venue:  Live  Royal Festival Hall, London, England 
Length: 20 Minutes 3 Secs. 
Language: German 
2.
Tristan und Isolde: Mild und leise "Liebestod" by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/14/1953 
Venue:  Live  Royal Festival Hall, London, England 
Length: 7 Minutes 22 Secs. 
Language: German 
3.
Melodies (12), Op. 33: no 2, Spring by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
4.
Melodies (12), Op. 33: no 1, The youth by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 42 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
5.
Melodies (12), Op. 33: no 9, At Rundarne by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
6.
Melodies (12), Op. 33: no 12, Goal by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 5 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
7.
Romances (6), Op. 39: no 1, From Monte Pincio by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1870; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 31 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
8.
Songs (4), Op. 21: no 1, The first meeting by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1870; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 29 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
9.
Songs (5), Op. 26: no 1, Hope by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
10.
Songs (6), Op. 25: no 2, A swan by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 55 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
11.
Songs (5), Op. 70: no 1, Eros by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1900; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 
Notes: Arranger: Max Reger. 
12.
Heart's melodies, Op. 5: no 3, I love thee by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863-1864; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/07/1957 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Language: Norwegian 

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