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Wagner: Wesendonck-Lieder, Arias / Kirsten Flagstad


Release Date: 01/25/2005 
Label:  Emi Great Artists Of The Century Catalog #: 62957   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten FlagstadGerald MooreSet SvanholmElisabeth Höngen
Conductor:  Issay DobrowenGeorges SebastianWilhelm Furtwängler
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 1 Hours 15 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This new “Great Artists of the Century” disc from EMI contains exactly the same music that was on the EMI Flagstad “Opera Arias” disc issued almost 20 years ago. But the two discs arrange their jointly shared material in two different ways. Each disc contains five excerpts from Wagner operas, each of which features Flagstad, and a complete performance of Wagner’s Wesendonk-Lieder by Flagstad and pianist Gerald Moore. On the old “Opera Arias” disc, the musical selections appeared in the order in which they were recorded. This meant that the Wesendonk-Lieder got mixed in with the familiar opera excerpts. On the other hand, the new CD begins with the Wesendonk-Lieder, setting them apart and thus giving them special importance.
Read more /> Almost all of these records were made in 1948, when Flagstad was 53, a few having been made three years later. The famous fullness of tone and stateliness of movement—that made one critic compare her to the Queen Mary—are still there in abundance, despite some audible wear at the top of the voice. Gerald Moore disappointed me though: rather clunky and insensitive. The best of the opera excerpts is Furtwängler’s electrifying Brünnhilde’s Immolation from Götterdämmerung; two others, almost as good, are Dobrowen’s versions of Isolde’s narrative and curse, and the “Liebestod.” This disc, one hopes, will introduce a younger generation to Flagstad’s magnificent musicianship.

William Youngren, FANFARE
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Works on This Recording

1.
Wesendonck Lieder by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano), Gerald Moore (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1858; Germany 
Language: German 
2.
Tannhäuser: Allmächt'ge Jungfrau "Elisabeth's Prayer" by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Issay Dobrowen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1845/1861; Germany 
Language: German 
3.
Götterdämmerung: Immolation by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Set Svanholm (Tenor), Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Georges Sebastian
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; Germany 
Language: German 
4.
Siegfried: Ewig war ich, ewig bin ich by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1871; Germany 
Language: German 
5.
Tristan und Isolde: Wie lachen sie mir "Narrative and Curse" by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano), Elisabeth Höngen (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Issay Dobrowen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857-1858; Germany 
Language: German 
6.
Tristan und Isolde: Mild und leise "Liebestod" by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad (Soprano)
Conductor:  Issay Dobrowen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Germany 
Language: German 

Sound Samples

Wesendonck-Lieder (2004 Digital Remaster): I. Der Engel
Wesendonck-Lieder (2004 Digital Remaster): II. Stehe still
Wesendonck-Lieder (2004 Digital Remaster): III. Im Treibhaus
Wesendonck-Lieder (2004 Digital Remaster): IV. Schmerzen
Wesendonck-Lieder (2004 Digital Remaster): V. Träume
Tannhäuser (2004 Digital Remaster): Gebet der Elisabeth: Allmächt'ge Jungfrau. hor mein Flehen!...(Act 3)
Siegfried (2004 Digital Remaster): Ewig war ich (III.Akt)
Götterdämmerung (2004 Digital Remaster): Starke Scheite schichtet mir dort (Immolation Scene), 3.Aufzug
Tristan und Isolde (2004 Digital Remaster): Doch nun von Tristan? (I.Akt)
Tristan und Isolde (2004 Digital Remaster): Mild und leise (III.Akt)

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