Richard Wagner

Biography

Born: May 22, 1813; Germany   Died: Feb 13, 1883; Italy   Period: Romantic
Richard Wagner was one of the most revolutionary figures in the history of music, a composer who made pivotal contributions to the development of harmony and musical drama that reverberate even today. Indeed, though Wagner occasionally produced successful music written on a relatively modest scale, opera -- the bigger, the better -- was clearly his milieu, and his aesthetic is perhaps the most grandiose that Western music has ever known. Early in Read more his career, Wagner learned both the elements and the practical, political realities of his craft by writing a handful of operas which were unenthusiastically, even angrily, received. Beginning with Rienzi (1838-40) and The Flying Dutchman (1841), however, he enjoyed a string of successes that propelled him to immortality and changed the face of music. His monumental Ring cycle of four operas -- Das Rheingold (1853-54), Die Walküre (1854-56), Siegfried (1856-71) and Götterdämmerung (1869-74) -- remains the most ambitious and influential contribution by any composer to the opera literature. Tristan and Isolde (1857-59) is perhaps the most representative example of Wagner's musical style, which is characterized by a high degree of chromaticism, a restless, searching tonal instability, lush harmonies, and the association of specific musical elements (known as leitmotifs, the flexible manipulation of which is one of the glories of Wagner's music) with certain characters and plot points. Wagner wrote text as well as music for all his operas, which he preferred to call "music dramas."
Wagner's life matched his music for sheer drama. Born in Leipzig on May 22, 1813, he began in the early 1830s to write prolifically on music and the arts in general; over his whole career, his music would to some degree serve to demonstrate his aesthetic theories. He often worked as a conductor in his early years; a conducting engagement took him to Riga, Latvia, in 1837, but he fled the country in the middle of the night two years later to elude creditors. Wagner as a young man had some sympathy with the revolutionary movements of the middle nineteenth century (and even the Ring cycle contains a distinct anti-materialist and vaguely socialist drift); in the Dresden uprisings of 1849 he apparently took up arms, and he had to leave Germany when the police restored order. Settling in Zurich, Switzerland, he wrote little for some years but evolved the intellectual framework for his towering mature masterpieces. Wagner returned to Germany in 1864 under the protection and patronage of King Ludwig II of Bavaria; it was in Bayreuth, near Munich, that he undertook the construction of an opera house (completed in 1876) built to his personal specifications and suited to the massive fusion of music, staging, text, and scene design that his later operas entailed. Bayreuth became something of a shrine for the fanatical Wagnerites who carried the torch after his death; it remains the goal of many a pilgrimage today. His attitude toward Jews was deeply ambivalent (he believed, mistakenly, that his stepfather was Jewish), but some of his writings contain anti-Semitic elements that have aroused considerable controversy among opera lovers, especially in view of Adolf Hitler's apparent predilection for the composer's music. Read less
Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen / Grimsley, Mellor, Blythe, Vinke, Fisch, Seattle Opera
Release Date: 09/09/2014   Label: Avie  
Catalog: 2313   Number of Discs: 14
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Wagner: Lieder / Sburlati, Scolastra
Release Date: 09/30/2014   Label: Brilliant Classics  
Catalog: 94451   Number of Discs: 1
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Wagner: Tristan Und Isolde / Knappertsbusch, Klose, Braun, Treptow, Frantz
Release Date: 03/25/2014   Label: Andromeda  
Catalog: 9011   Number of Discs: 3
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Wagner: Highlights From Tristan Und Isolde & Tannhauser
Release Date: 03/13/2012   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 6164   Number of Discs: 1
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Schumann & Wagner / Butt, London Symphony Orchestra
Release Date: 05/08/2012   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 6163   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Lohengrin: Elsa's Dream

Browse 76-94 of 94 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    Four Famous German Sopranos
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89971 Release Date: 07/04/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Giacomo Puccini,  Bedrich Smetana,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Margarete Teschemacher,  Tiana Lemnitz,  Maria Müller,  Franz Völker  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Seidler-Winkler,  Leo Blech,  Robert Heger,  Fritz Zweig  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Berlin City Opera Orchestra,  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra
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  • 77.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Mafalda Favero
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89162 Release Date: 07/04/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Ugo Bottacchiari,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Mafalda Favero,  Tito Schipa,  Alessandro Ziliani
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  • 78.
    Richard Wagner On Record
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89404 Release Date: 07/04/1998   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Berta Morena,  Nicola Geisse-Winkel,  Gertrud Bindernagel,  Karl Armster  ... 
    Conductor:  Selmar Meyrowitz,  Johannes Schüler,  Walter Lutze,  Manfred Gurlitt  ... 
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  • 79.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Kirsten Flagstad
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89141 Release Date: 05/20/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Wagner,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  Hans Lange
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Orchestra
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  • 80.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Maria Caniglia
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89131 Release Date: 11/19/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Francesco Cilèa,  Alfredo Catalani,  Pietro Mascagni  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Tancredi Pasero
    Conductor:  Lorenzo Molajoli,  Luigi Ricci,  Gino Marinuzzi,  Umberto Berrettoni  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 81.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Helen Traubel
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89120 Release Date: 10/15/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Christoph W. Gluck,  Richard Wagner,  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Helen Traubel,  Kurt Baum
    Conductor:  Charles O'Connell,  Artur Rodzinski,  Ernst Knoch,  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  Metropolitan Opera Orchestra  ... 
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  • 82.
    Prima Voce - Nezhdanova In Opera & Song
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7877 Release Date: 06/04/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Gounod,  Joaquin Valverde,  Richard Wagner,  Gioachino Rossini  ... 
    Performer:  Antonina Nezhdanova,  U. Masetti
    Conductor:  I. P. Arkadiev
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  • 83.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Maria Németh
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89109 Release Date: 02/20/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Karl Goldmark,  Giacomo Puccini,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Németh
    Conductor:  Karl Alwin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Orchestra
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  • 84.
    Evelyn Lear And Thomas Stewart Sing Wagner & Strauss
    Label: Vai Audio   Catalog: 1011 Release Date: 11/06/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Thomas Stewart,  Evelyn Lear
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  • 85.
    Prima Voce - Great Singers At The Gran Teatro Del Liceo
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7869 Release Date: 06/20/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Edoardo Mascheroni,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Barrientos,  Riccardo Stracciari,  Francisco Viñas,  Mattia Battistini  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Sabajno,  Gelabert,,  Robert Heger,  Lorenzo Molajoli  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 86.
    Prima Voce - Rosa Ponselle Vol 2
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7846 Release Date: 04/16/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ernest Charles,  Charles Gounod,  Jules Massenet,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Rosa Ponselle,  Elsie Baker
    Conductor:  Romano Romani,  Rosario Bourdon
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  • 87.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Hina Spani
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89037 Release Date: 02/07/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Floro Manuel Ugarte,  Richard Wagner,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Apollo Granforte,  Hina Spani
    Conductor:  Carlo Sabajno,  Gino Nastrucci
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra
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  • 88.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Margarete Teschemacher
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89049 Release Date: 02/07/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Strauss,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Margarete Teschemacher,  Irma Beilke,  Marcel Wittrisch
    Conductor:  Hanns Udo Müller,  Bruno Seidler-Winkler,  Karl Böhm,  Fritz Zaun
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin City Opera Orchestra,  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Saxon State Orchestra
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  • 89.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Rosetta Pampanini
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89063 Release Date: 02/07/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Gounod,  Richard Wagner,  Giuseppe Pietri,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Performer:  Rosetta Pampanini,  Dino Borgioli,  Fernandino Ciniselli
    Conductor:  Angelo Albergoni,  Ugo Tansini,  Lorenzo Molajoli,  Ettore Panizza
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  EIAR Symphony Orchestra Turin
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  • 90.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Tiana Lemnitz
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89025 Release Date: 02/07/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Tiana Lemnitz
    Conductor:  Leo Blech,  Sir Thomas Beecham,  Bruno Seidler-Winkler,  Johannes Schüler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 91.
    Kirsten Flagstad Vol 1 - The Early Recordings 1914-1941
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1821 Release Date: 01/01/1995   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Eyvind Alnaes,  Sigurd Lie,  Christian Sinding  ... 
    Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad,  Eyvind Alnaes
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
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  • 92.
    Prima Voce - Opera Arias / Adelina Patti
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7840 Release Date: 09/02/1994   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  James Hook,  Jean-Philippe Rameau,  Henry Bishop,  John Liptrott Hatton  ... 
    Performer:  Adelina Patti,  Alfredo Barili,  Lucien Fugère,  Landon Ronald  ... 
    On sale! $21.96
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  • 93.
    Prima Voce - Kirsten Flagstad
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7847 Release Date: 12/02/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Wagner,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Kirsten Flagstad
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  Edwin McArthur,  Hans Lange
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  San Francisco Opera Orchestra,  Orchestra
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