Gösta Winbergh

Biography

Born: December 30, 1943; Stockholm, Sweden   Died: March 19, 2002; Vienna, Austria  
Although he had enjoyed a distinguished career lasting three decades, Gösta Winbergh died prematurely while still in excellent voice. Thorough training and conscientious attention to vocal health enabled the tenor to move from primacy in Mozart roles into spinto, dramatic, and even heroic roles during his final ten years. With a broad, handsome face and a trim, sturdy physique, Winbergh was valued for the strength and manliness he brought first Read more to the Mozart repertory and, later, to such roles as Walter von Stolzing, Lohengrin, Parsifal, and in the higher tessitura of Strauss' Bacchus. In the final years allotted to him, he even undertook such heldentenor roles as Tristan, Siegmund, and Siegfried, bringing to these the same firm, steady beauty of tone that had marked his work in the lyric repertory. Few singers of any voice range have ever made such a far-ranging transition while avoiding deterioration in sound and steadiness.

Winbergh's exposure to music came early through his mother, a concert pianist. After a brief fling with pop music, the young man applied himself to serious music. Identified as having a promising voice, Winbergh was introduced to Martin Oehman, once a prominent Wagnerian before entering a second career as a teacher. Although Oehman had seemed a good choice (he listed Nicolai Gedda among his students), he died before Winbergh had completed a year's study. Shortly before his death, Oehman had referred the young tenor to Swedish baritone Erik Saedén, a respected artist and an advocate of placing the voice as naturally as possible. Following two years of vocal training, Winbergh joined the opera school in Stockholm and completed another two years of concentrated study.

Winbergh's professional stage debut in 1973 came in Göteborg, where he sang mostly lighter Romantic-period roles with occasional forays into operetta. After this solid experience, he was engaged by the Royal Opera in his native city and there began to specialize in Mozart, also undertaking concert work, both with orchestra and in recital. 1981 brought Winbergh to Zürich, where he stayed until 1986, establishing a residence where he remained even after he left the company. Soon, Winbergh had added Munich, Vienna, San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Milan, Berlin, London, and many other major houses and numerous festivals to his schedule.

Although heavier roles were largely future dreams in the 1980s, Winbergh began exploring that repertory in 1992 with a Lohengrin at Zürich. Subsequently, he essayed Parsifal in Berlin (after a Stockholm trial), Tristan in Stockholm and Vienna, and Siegmund in Zürich. In the meantime, he had added Walter in Die Meistersinger (sung in several major theaters) Gherman in Pique Dame, and the Emperor in Die Frau ohne Schatten (the latter two in Zürich).

Winbergh evinced little interest in contemporary opera, protesting that he was too decidedly a natural singer. His concern for maintaining a fresh voice led him to work with Nicolai Gedda for a number of years; even as he added the heaviest parts in the German repertory to his schedule, he retained a focused and unstrained top register for Strauss. His recorded Bacchus attests to that just as his ringing Florestan in an excellent Naxos recording of Fidelio melds lyric fluidity with dramatic strength. Winbergh was treasured by the finest conductors of his time. An artist of the first rank, he was also respected by his colleagues as a considerate, generous man. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 45 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Solti Conducts The Mozart Operas [15-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001745402 Release Date: 10/16/2012   Number of Discs: 15
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Tom Krause,  Arthur Davies,  Gabriel Bacquier,  Pilar Lorengar  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Chorus,  London Opera Chorus  ... 
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  • 2.
    Mozart: Die Entfuhrung aus dem Serail / Solti, Gruberova
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001726802 Release Date: 09/11/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Edita Gruberova,  Martti Talvela,  Gösta Winbergh,  Kathleen Battle  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
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  • 3.
    Bach: Cantatas 51, 202, 10, 80, 140 / Ameling, Watts, Munchinger
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4804844 Release Date: 07/03/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Gösta Winbergh,  Gabriele Fontana,  Tom Krause,  Julia Hamari
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Hymnuschor
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  • 4.
    Strauss: Ariadne Auf Naxos, Etc / Nagano, Price, Jo, Schafer
    Label: Virgin Classics   Catalog: 59867 Release Date: 06/05/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Sumi Jo,  Ernst Theo Richter,  Gösta Winbergh,  Markus Schäfer  ... 
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Lyon Opera Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Haydn: Die Schopfung - Battle, Karajan, Berliner Philharmonic
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4779767 Release Date: 10/18/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn
    Performer:  Kathleen Battle,  Kurt Moll,  Gösta Winbergh
    Conductor:  James Levine
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Stockholm Radio Chorus
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  • 6.
    Gluck: Iphigenie En Tauride / Muti, Vaness, Allen, Surian, Teatro Alla Scala
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 57637 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Christoph W. Gluck
    Performer:  Giorgio Surian,  Carol Vaness,  Thomas Allen,  Gösta Winbergh
    Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra
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  • 7.
    Donizetti: L'Elisir d'Amore / Panerai, Bonney, Ferro
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 423076 Release Date: 10/15/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti
    Performer:  Antonella Bandelli,  Rolando Panerai,  Barbara Bonney,  Bernd Weikl  ... 
    Conductor:  Gabriele Ferro
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Florence Maggio Musicale Orchestra,  Florence Maggio Musicale Chorus
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  • 8.
    Thomas: Hamlet / Bonynge, Sutherland, Milnes, Morris
    Label: London/Decca Grand Opera Series   Catalog: 433857 Release Date: 09/21/2009   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ambroise Thomas
    Performer:  Peyo Garazzi,  Arwel Huw Morgan,  John Tomlinson,  Keith Lewis  ... 
    Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Welsh National Opera Orchestra,  Welsh National Opera Chorus
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  • 9.
    Mozart: La Clemenza Di Tito / Muti, Vaness, Ziegler, Et Al
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 55489 Release Date: 08/07/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  László Polgár,  Christine Barbaux,  Marta Senn,  Gösta Winbergh  ... 
    Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 10.
    Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem;  Bruckner: Te Deum / Karajan
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 410521 Release Date: 03/03/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Anton Bruckner
    Performer:  José Van Dam,  Barbara Hendricks,  Gösta Winbergh,  Helga Müller-Molinari  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Singverein,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 11.
    Mozart: Cosi Fan Tutte / Arnold Östman
    Label: L'oiseau Lyre   Catalog: 414316 Release Date: 10/15/2008   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Alicia Nafé,  Gösta Winbergh,  Carlos Feller,  Tom Krause  ... 
    Conductor:  Arnold Östman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Drottningholm Court Theatre Orchestra,  Drottningholm Court Theatre Chorus
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  • 12.
    Icon - Mirella Freni - The Opera Singer
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 06253 Release Date: 09/02/2008   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Giacomo Puccini,  Pietro Mascagni,  Gustave Charpentier  ... 
    Performer:  Agnes Baltsa,  Mirella Freni,  José Carreras,  Katia Ricciarelli  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Franco Ferraris,  Alain Lombard,  Leone Magiera  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 13.
    Liszt: A Faust Symphony / Winbergh, Muti
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 09017 Release Date: 02/12/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Liszt
    Performer:  Gösta Winbergh
    Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Westminster Choir College Male Chorus,  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Mirella Freni- Great Opera Duets
    Label: Emi Studio   Catalog: 63665 Release Date: 09/17/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Charles Gounod,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Nicolai Gedda,  Mirella Freni,  Sesto Bruscantini,  Gösta Winbergh  ... 
    Conductor:  Thomas Schippers,  Riccardo Muti,  Otto Klemperer,  Michel Plasson  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Toulouse Capitole Orchestra  ... 
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  • 15.
    Donizetti: Don Pasquale Highlights / Riccardo Muti
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 54490 Release Date: 05/11/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti
    Performer:  Leo Nucci,  Mirella Freni,  Gösta Winbergh,  Sesto Bruscantini
    Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian Opera Chorus,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 16.
    Impressionen Vol 1
    Label: Nightingale Classics   Catalog: 210892 Release Date: 12/05/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Joanna Borowska,  Gösta Winbergh,  Friedrich Haider,  Charlotte Margiono  ... 
    Conductor:  Friedrich Haider,  Fabio Luisi,  Gustaf Sjökvist,  Rudolf Bibl
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra,  Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra,  Cracow Polish Radio/TV Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 17.
    Mozart:  Mitridate, Rč Di Ponto / Harnoncourt, Winbergh, Kenny, Murray, Gjevang
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000617309 Release Date: 04/11/2006  
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Gösta Winbergh,  Yvonne Kenny,  Ann Murray,  Anne Gjevang  ... 
    Conductor:  Nikolaus Harnoncourt
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  • 18.
    Mozart: Great Opera Moments 1 / Bartoli, Domingo, Etc
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000573302 Release Date: 01/10/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa,  David Aronson,  Anna Netrebko,  Placido Domingo  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis,  Gianandrea Noseda,  James Levine,  John Pritchard  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Metropolitan Opera Orchestra  ... 
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  • 19.
    Beethoven: Fidelio (Highlights) / Halász, Nielsen, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557892 Release Date: 11/15/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Edith Lienbacher,  Inga Nielsen,  Herwig Pecoraro,  Kurt Moll  ... 
    Conductor:  Michael Halász
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nicolaus Esterházy Sinfonia,  Hungarian Radio Chorus
    CD: $9.99
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  • 20.
    The Mozart Collection - Limited Edition Box Set
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000552802 Release Date: 11/08/2005   Number of Discs: 20
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Willard White,  Hans-Peter Blochwitz,  Anne Sofie von Otter,  Barbara Bonney  ... 
    Conductor:  John Eliot Gardiner,  Myung-Whun Chung,  Sir Georg Solti,  Karl Böhm  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Monteverdi Choir,  English Baroque Soloists,  Santa Cecilia Academy Rome Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $199.99
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  • 21.
    Donizetti: L'elisir D'amore / Bonney, Winbergh, Et Al
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000458002 Release Date: 06/14/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti
    Performer:  Barbara Bonney,  Gösta Winbergh,  Bernd Weikl,  Rolando Panerai  ... 
    Conductor:  Gabriele Ferro
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Florence Maggio Musicale Chorus,  Florence Maggio Musicale Orchestra
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  • 22.
    Poulenc: Stabat Mater, Gloria; Bizet: Te Deum / Dutoit, Et Al
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4762947 Release Date: 11/15/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Francis Poulenc,  Georges Bizet
    Performer:  Françoise Pollet,  Sylvia Greenberg,  Gösta Winbergh
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Jesús Lopez-Cobos
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  French National Orchestra,  French National Radio Chorus,  Suisse Romande Chorus  ... 
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  • 23.
    Wagner: Die Meistersinger Von Nürnberg / Deutsche Oper Berlin 1995
    Label: Arthaus Musik   Catalog: 100153 Release Date: 04/20/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Wolfgang Brendel,  Eva Johansson,  Gösta Winbergh
    Conductor:  Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Deutsche Oper Chorus,  Berlin Deutsche Oper Orchestra
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  • 24.
    Pope John Paul Ii Celebrates Solemn High Mass In St. Peter's
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 419096 Release Date: 01/13/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Trudeliese Schmidt,  Gösta Winbergh,  Kathleen Battle,  Ferruccio Furlanetto  ... 
    Conductor:  Domenico Bartolucci,  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sistine Chapel Singers,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Singverein
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  • 25.
    Mahler: Des Knaben Wunderhorn / Chailly, Bonney, Goerne, Winburgh
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000002902 Release Date: 04/08/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Sara Fulgoni,  Matthias Goerne,  Gösta Winbergh,  Barbara Bonney
    Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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