WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Wagner: Der Ring, Tristan Und Isolde, Parsifal - Orchestral Adventures / De Waart

Wagner / Nrpo / Waart
Release Date: 11/09/2010 
Label:  Challenge   Catalog #: 72338   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 3 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 3 Hours 5 Mins. 

In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  
On sale! $42.98
CD:  $37.99
In Stock



Notes and Editorial Reviews

Whatever you think of his operas (works of all-encompassing genius, or long-winded, tedious trash-troves), there's little disputing that, as evidenced by this collection from Edo de Waart and the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Richard Wagner produced some of the finest and most original orchestral music of the 19th century.

These three "symphonic compilations" (a 3-disc set originally released on separate CDs) are arrangements by composer Henk de Vlieger. The Ring--An Orchestral Adventure does a pretty decent job of compressing Wagner's four-opera magnum opus into 67 minutes. Those that know the story well will immediately recognize the main dramatic selections, and will easily follow along with the narrative. Even
Read more better--the unfamiliar listener will find this compilation enjoyable on its musical merits alone. De Waart has a real ear for this music, and he leads the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic in a mostly powerful rendition. It's only at the climactic destruction of Valhalla where he lets the tension flag, sounding restrained next to Levine's orchestral tsunami.

Tristan und Isolde--An Orchestral Passion is another success as it also reduces the opera to its core dramatic elements (for a runtime of 64 minutes). The Prelude segues right into the beginning of Act 2, where it's nice for a change to hear the hunting horns unobscured by the voices. (We are thankfully spared King Marke's extended guilt trip after the lovers' discovery.) Act 3 is best--hearing the mournful prelude without voices is to suddenly recognize the seeds of Sibelius' Swan of Tuonela. De Waart and the musicians again offer a beautifully realized performance, even if it could have done with a bit more emotional intensity in the Liebestod.

Parsifal--An Orchestral Quest is less convincing mainly because the opera does not easily lend itself to synthesis (in addition to containing great swaths of dullness). The "Parsifal" section between the Prelude and the first Grail scene sounds like so much filler, and without voices Act 2's Flower Maiden scene loses some of its magical allure. Without an awareness of what's going in the story, Act 3's Good Friday music sounds like another Siegfried Idyll. The second, grimmer Grail scene comes off well enough--it's just too bad that Vlieger left out its chilling concluding brass passage.

Of course, there always have been recordings of Wagner orchestral excerpts ("bleeding chunks"), with Szell's and Tennstedt's being among the indispensable. However, de Waart's set provides an opportunity to experience this music in a more or less congruent manner without requiring you to sit through (some would say endure) the complete operas. For that, and for the largely compelling performances (and first-rate recorded sound), it earns a solid recommendation.

--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com

____________

3444320.az_WAGNER_VLIEGER_Der_Ring.html

WAGNER-VLIEGER Der Ring—An Orchestral Adventure. Tristan und Isolde—An Orchestral Passion. Parsifal—An Orchestral Quest Edo de Waart, cond; Netherlands RPO CHALLENGE CC72338 (3 CDs: 185:33)


WAGNER-VLIEGER Meistersinger—An Orchestral Tribute. 2 Tragic Entr’actes 1 Edo de Waart, 1 Otto Tausk, cond; Netherlands RPO CHALLENGE CC72326 (65:04)


I’m never certain who the audience is for these kinds of Wagner conflations. On the one hand, general audiences seem perfectly happy with the usual overtures, preludes, and other “bleeding chunks” that keep turning up on concert programs and on disc. On the other, dyed-in-the-wool Wagnerians, while mildly entertained, may be suspicious of the complete excision of texts from the Master’s “Total Works of Art.” Maybe it’s the arranger who enjoys them the most: It’s a chance to roll up one’s sleeves and work re-creatively with musical materials they are obviously very devoted to.


Leopold Stokowski was great at this kind of thing, and his “symphonic syntheses” of music from Tristan and Parsifal , as well as his versions of material from the Ring, have long been embraced by even rigid keepers of the Wagner flame. (José Serebrier’s readings on Naxos are superb.) Plenty of others have tried their hand at Wagner-arranging, including, in the recent past, Charles Gerhardt and Lorin Maazel. With these two new releases from Challenge Classics, there are now competing recordings for three of Henk de Vlieger’s extended Wagner treatments, plus a new-to-disc Meistersinger arrangement.


Edo de Waart and the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic gave complete concert performances of the four Ring operas between 1988 and 1991. For a tour of Germany in 1992, de Vlieger—principal percussionist of the orchestra and a prolific arranger of all sorts of music—was commissioned to create A Ring Symphony , later renamed Der Ring—An Orchestral Adventure . The Parsifal and Tristan und Isolde works followed in 1994 and 1995; the Meistersinger “tribute” dates from 2006. De Vlieger employs a light touch with his transcriptions, sometimes perhaps too light. The standard orchestral sections—the preludes to Meistersinger and Tristan , “Siegfried’s Rhine Journey,” Parsifal ’s Transformation Music, etc.—work out just fine, of course, but these 51- to 67-minute works are fleshed out with extended excerpts that originally had a vocal component. More often than not, de Vlieger simply drops the vocal line and lets the orchestral contribution stand on its own. Although Wagner’s orchestral writing is always interesting enough by itself (and the voice is frequently doubled instrumentally), the experience can be a little odd. It’s like attending an orchestra rehearsal, before the singers arrive in town. Or a Music-Minus-One record: All you Bathroom Brünnhildes feel free to join in.


There are some instances when de Vlieger has to add the vocal part(s), or we won’t be hearing much of anything—the heavenly choir near the close of Parsifal; the choruses of shoemakers, tailors, and bakers in Meistersinger ’s climactic act III scene. But, mostly, we get the orchestra as written (though it should be noted that Vlieger employs a standard orchestral brass section for the Ring —no Wagner tubas or bass trumpet). Other arrangers have reaped the benefits of a more activist approach. “The Ride of the Valkyries” may be the best-known music from Die Walküre , but it’s “Wotan’s Farewell” that’s the emotional highlight of the drama, and de Vlieger just ignores it. Charles Gerhardt, on a Chesky Records collection (CD161), assigns Wotan’s vocal line to varying instruments quite convincingly. De Vlieger does get more aggressive in his Meistersinger arrangement, freely excising bars when necessary for the sake of musical continuity. For example, during the “Prize Song,” the volk ’s interjections are gone.


Edo de Waart’s conducting may not be revelatory, but it’s far more idiomatic than Neeme Järvi’s on a pair of Chandos SACDs offering de Vlieger’s Ring and Parsifal arrangements. The orchestra plays beautifully. Filling out the Meistersinger disc are two snippets of very early Wagner. Deux Entr’actes tragiques exist in the Richard-Wagner-Gesamtausgabe mostly as piano sketches, with just 52 bars fully orchestrated, and de Vlieger has done an admirable job of turning them into short, enjoyable pieces. The liner notes remark on “an affinity with Carl Maria von Weber.” True, and perhaps Schubert as well. But not Wagner, not even the Wagner of just a decade later. Otto Tausk, a well-traveled Dutch conductor, does a fine job leading the reconstructions.


The sound is excellent; the three-CD set was recorded at the Concertgebouw and the Meistersinger program in a studio. In both cases, there’s plenty of detail—especially with a score in hand, you can tell exactly what the arranger has done—but there’s also satisfying orchestral weight and spatiality. I definitely agree with Arthur B. Lintgen (in Fanfare 32:1 and 34:2) that the Järvi performances are very disappointing; there is another version of the Tristan und Isolde transcription from Antony Hermus and the Hagen Philharmonic on the Acousence label that I’ve not heard. But these Challenge Classics CDs are recommendable on their own merits, if this kind of endeavor floats your boat. Start with the Meistersinger disc, if you’re at all unsure.


FANFARE: Andrew Quint
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Das Rheingold: Prelude by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 4 Minutes 11 Secs. 
2.
Das Rheingold: Das Rheingold by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853-1854; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 1 Minutes 52 Secs. 
3.
Das Rheingold: Nibelheim by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853-1854; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 2 Minutes 27 Secs. 
4.
Das Rheingold: Walhall by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853-1854; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 3 Minutes 35 Secs. 
5.
Die Walküre: Die Walküren by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854-1856; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 4 Minutes 1 Secs. 
6.
Die Walküre: Magic Fire Music by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1856; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 3 Minutes 37 Secs. 
7.
Siegfried: Forest Murmurs [Instrumental] by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1871; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 2 Minutes 10 Secs. 
8.
Siegfried: Siegfrieds Heldentat by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1856-1871; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 6 Minutes 33 Secs. 
9.
Siegfried: Brünnhildes Erwachen by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1856-1871; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 6 Minutes 59 Secs. 
10.
Götterdämmerung: Siegfried und Brünnhilde by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1869-1874; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 4 Minutes 17 Secs. 
11.
Götterdämmerung: Siegfrieds Tod by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1869-1874; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 6 Minutes 3 Secs. 
12.
Götterdämmerung: Trauermusik by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1869-1874; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 6 Minutes 46 Secs. 
13.
Götterdämmerung: Brünnhildes Opfertat by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1869-1874; Germany 
Date of Recording: 05/1994 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 8 Minutes 39 Secs. 
14.
Tristan und Isolde: Einleitung by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 10 Minutes 49 Secs. 
15.
Tristan und Isolde: Isolde Liebesverlangen by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 7 Minutes 46 Secs. 
16.
Tristan und Isolde: Nachtgesang by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 19 Minutes 47 Secs. 
17.
Tristan und Isolde: Vorspiel und Reigen by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 8 Minutes 41 Secs. 
18.
Tristan und Isolde: Tristans Vision by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 5 Minutes 18 Secs. 
19.
Tristan und Isolde: Das Wiedersehen by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 5 Minutes 20 Secs. 
20.
Tristan und Isolde: Mild und leise "Liebestod" by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1995 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 6 Minutes 36 Secs. 
21.
Parsifal: Act 1 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1877-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 11 Minutes 11 Secs. 
22.
Parsifal: Parsifal by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 3 Minutes 25 Secs. 
23.
Parsifal: Die Gralsritter by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 9 Minutes 26 Secs. 
24.
Parsifal: Die Blumenmädchen by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 7 Minutes 16 Secs. 
25.
Parsifal: Good Friday Music by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1877-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 10 Minutes 36 Secs. 
26.
Parsifal: Die Gralsritter 2 by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 4 Minutes 26 Secs. 
27.
Parsifal: Nachtspiel by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Edo De Waart
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1882; Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/1992 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 7 Minutes 36 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 A Great Compilation April 1, 2012 By Gail M. (Goleta, CA) See All My Reviews "This 3-disk set includes arrangements by Henk de Vlieger of orchestral music from Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen, Tristan und Isolde, and Parsifal. The Ring, Tristan, and Parsifal occupy separate CDs with playing times about an hour each. The performances by the Netherlands Radio Philarmonic under Edo de Waart's direction, are beautifully played and superbly recorded. One would only wish that more of the music from these operas had been included. For example, only the Magic Fire and Walkure Ride music is included from Die Walkure, coming to less than 8 minutes total. And in the Parsifal collection, the music from Act 2, where the sorcerer Klingsor appears, isn't represented at all. This is significant because Parsifal is a work with a very concentrated emotional/intellectual atmosphere, and Wagner wisely composed Klingsor's dramatio passages to add an important dramatic contrast with the general mood. But this is the finest collection of orchestral Wagner excerpts I've ever heard, and it deserves a very strong recomendation." Report Abuse
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN - TRY IT FREE!
Listen to all your favorite classical music for only $20/month.
Sign up for your monthly subscription service and get unlimited access to the most comprehensive digital catalog of classical music in the world - new releases. bestsellers, advanced releases and more.
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In