Martti Talvela

Biography

Martti Talvela had a Wagnerian bass voice of uncommon power and richness. He was noted for his expressive legato singing, and exceptional focus of tone. He also dominated the operatic stage by his sheer size: He was an immense man, standing six foot eight and weighing around 300 pounds. This suited him well for the most commanding roles in opera, such as Fasolt the Giant in Wagner's Das Rheingold and Hagen in Götterdämmerung, Mussorgsky's Boris Read more Godunov, Sarastro in Mozart's The Magic Flute, Verdi's Grand Inquisitor, and a role that was written for him, the revivalist preacher Paavo Ruotsalainen in Kokkonen's The Last Temptations.

He began his adult life as a schoolteacher, but pursued vocal studies. After his Stockholm operatic debut (as Sparafucile in Verdi's Rigoletto) he soon found himself in demand, singing all the Wagnerian bass roles, several Russian operas, and many Verdi parts. He also pursued a career as a recitalist, and was the greatest male champion of the songs of his countrymen Sibelius and Kilpinen. He regarded the condition of being granted artistic talent as carrying with it a God-given responsibility. In 1972, he accepted an invitation to become Artistic Director of the Savonlinna Opera Festival. This yearly event, little-known then outside Finland, had been revived in 1967 after a festival that had been run by the great Finnish soprano Aïno Ackté from 1912 to 1930. Talvela immediately transformed it into one of the top international music festivals, in which operas are staged in the impressive courtyard of the St. Olaf's Castle (or Olavonlinna).

Health problems forced Talvela's retirement from Savonlinna in 1979; he had been diagnosed with diabetes, and he had other dangers to his health due to his weight. He restricted his operatic repertory to ten roles, cut back on his lucrative employment in that field, but expanded his schedule of recitals on the grounds that these were better "to bring my message." His sense of the artist's divine mission to bring something to the world was expressed in a 1986 interview. He accepted an appointment to become director of the Finnish National Opera commencing in 1992. But he was stricken with a heart attack and dropped dead while dancing at the party after his daughter's wedding on July 22, 1989, a shocking and regretted sudden deaths in operatic history. He left behind a rich legacy of recordings, including video productions, of many of his great roles. Read less
Browse 51-75 of 97 Available Recordings
1 2 3 4
  • 51.
    Wagner: Parsifal / Knappertsbusch, Thomas, Dalis, London
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 000786302 Release Date: 11/14/2006   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Niels Moller,  Gerhard Stolze,  Georg Paskuda,  Dorothea Siebert  ... 
    Conductor:  Hans Knappertsbusch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra,  Bayreuth Festival Chorus
    CD: $47.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $47.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $23.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 52.
    Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov / Karajan, Ghiaurov
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000747902 Release Date: 10/10/2006   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Ludovic Spiess,  Martti Talvela,  Sabin Markov  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Boys' Choir,  Vienna State Opera Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    Recommendation
    On sale! $38.98
    CD: $33.99
    Low Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $38.98   CD:  $33.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $29.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 53.
    Verdi: Requiem, Quattro Pezzi Sacri / Solti,  Vienna Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra And Chorus
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000710602 Release Date: 10/10/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Luciano Pavarotti,  Marilyn Horne,  Martti Talvela  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Chorus  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $22.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $22.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $19.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 54.
    Wagner: Ring / Böhm, Bayreuther Festpiele
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 000723802 Release Date: 09/12/2006   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schärtel,  Helga Dernesch,  Sieglinde Wagner,  Birgit Nilsson  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra,  Bayreuth Festival Chorus
    CD not available
    MP3 Available
    MP3:  $83.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 55.
    Mozart: Die Zauberflote / Levine, Cotrubas, Tappy, Vienna Po
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 87760 Release Date: 08/29/2006   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  José Van Dam,  Elisabeth Kales,  Rachel Yakar,  Trudeliese Schmidt  ... 
    Conductor:  James Levine
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
    CD: $18.99
    Back Order
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $24.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 56.
    Evelyn Lear & Thomas Stewart - A Musical Tribute
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 689702 Release Date: 08/08/2006   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Leonard Bernstein,  Alban Berg,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Evelyn Lear,  Thomas Stewart,  Erik Werba,  Marie McLaughlin  ... 
    Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Karl Böhm,  Otto Gerdes,  Hans Löwlein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  London Voices,  Berlin Deutsche Oper Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $39.99
    CD: $19.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $39.99   CD:  $19.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $29.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 57.
    Essential Choral Classics
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000691802 Release Date: 06/13/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Joseph Brackett,  Gioachino Rossini,  Gustav Mahler,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  Mirella Freni,  Lucia Valentini-Terrani,  Ruggero Raimondi,  Luciano Pavarotti  ... 
    Conductor:  Jerold Ottley,  Romano Gandolfi,  Sir Georg Solti,  George Guest  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Mormon Tabernacle Choir,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus,  Vienna Concert-Verein  ... 
    CD: $19.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $19.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $11.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 58.
    Mahler: Symphony No 8 / Solti, Chicago Symphony, Et Al
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000691902 Release Date: 06/13/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Arleen Augér,  Heather Harper,  Yvonne Minton,  Helen Watts  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Vienna Boys' Choir,  Vienna State Opera Chorus  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $12.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $12.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $9.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 59.
    Bernstein In Vienna - Beethoven: Symphony No 9
    Label: Kultur Video   Catalog: 1343 Release Date: 01/31/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Dame Gwyneth Jones,  Shirley Verrett,  Placido Domingo,  Martti Talvela
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
    DVD: $18.99
    In Stock
    DVD:  $18.99 Add DVD to Cart

  • 60.
    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  ... 
    CD not available
    MP3 Available
    MP3:  $9.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 61.
    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
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $199.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $199.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 62.
    Mozart: Die Entführung Aus Dem Serail / Böhm, Gruberova, Grist, Araiza
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000476609 Release Date: 09/13/2005  
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Norbert Orth,  Martti Talvela,  Francisco Araiza,  Reri Grist  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian State Opera Orchestra,  Bavarian State Opera Chorus
    DVD: $29.99
    In Stock
    DVD:  $29.99 Add DVD to Cart

  • 63.
    Original Masters - The Art Of Fritz Wunderlich
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000480702 Release Date: 09/13/2005   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Hübsch,,  Traditional,  Osman Perez Freire  ... 
    Performer:  Fritz Wunderlich,  Hermann Prey,  Hubert Giesen,  Ingeborg Hallstein  ... 
    Conductor:  Hans Carste,  Kurt Eichhorn,  Robert Stolz,  Horst Stein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Graunke Symphony Orchestra,  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Die Spilar-Schrammeln (salon orchestra)  ... 
    On sale! $55.98
    CD: $48.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $55.98   CD:  $48.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $41.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 64.
    Verdi: Don Carlo / Stein, Corelli, Janowitz, Ghiaurov, Et Al
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 649053 Release Date: 07/26/2005   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Edita Gruberova,  Gundula Janowitz,  Nicolai Ghiaurov,  Martti Talvela  ... 
    Conductor:  Horst Stein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
    CD: $54.49
    Low Stock
    CD:  $54.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 65.
    Beethoven: Fidelio Op 72 / Böhm, Jones, King, Et Al
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000459002 Release Date: 07/12/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Martti Talvela,  James King,  Franz Crass,  Dame Gwyneth Jones  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle,  Dresden State Opera Chorus
    CD: $12.99
    Special Order
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $12.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $11.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 66.
    The #1 Beethoven Album
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000111302 Release Date: 10/14/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Pilar Lorengar,  Yvonne Minton,  Stuart Burrows,  Martti Talvela  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Rafael Kubelik,  Claudio Abbado,  Kurt Masur  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Chorus,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Beaux Arts Trio  ... 
    CD not available
    MP3 Available
    MP3:  $11.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 67.
    Mussorgsky: Boris Godounov / Karajan, Ghiaurov, Vishnevskaya
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 411862 Release Date: 04/08/2003   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Alexei Maslennikov,  Martti Talvela,  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Olivera Miljakovic  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD not available
    MP3 Available
    MP3:  $29.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 68.
    Essential Mozart Opera
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 473824 Release Date: 03/11/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Pilar Lorengar,  Teresa Berganza,  Gabriel Bacquier,  Ryland Davies  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  István Kertész,  Sir Colin Davis,  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $11.98
    CD: $9.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $11.98   CD:  $9.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $11.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 69.
    Beethoven - Greatest Hits
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 472779 Release Date: 02/11/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Martti Talvela,  Yvonne Minton,  Pilar Lorengar,  Stuart Burrows  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Bernhard Klee,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Giuseppe Sinopoli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Chorus,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $8.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $8.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 70.
    Verdi: Don Carlo / Sir Georg Solti, Bergonzi, Tebaldi
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 421114 Release Date: 09/10/2002   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Tugomir Franc,  Joan Carlyle,  Grace Bumbry,  Jeanette Sinclair  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Chorus,  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
    On sale! $44.98
    ArkivCD $39.99
    Low Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $44.98   ArkivCD:  $39.99 Add to Cart

    MP3:  $29.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 71.
    Wagner: Der Fliegende Holländer /Solti
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 470792 Release Date: 05/13/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Janis Martin,  René Kollo,  Martti Talvela,  Werner Krenn  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Chorus
    On sale! $29.99
    Import CD
    $27.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    On sale!   $29.99   CD:  $27.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $19.99 Add MP3 to Cart

  • 72.
    Wagner: Das Rheingold / Bohm, Windgassen, Adam
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 412475 Release Date: 05/08/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Gustav Neidlinger,  Annelies Burmeister,  Martti Talvela,  Kurt Böhme  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra
    Recommendation
    On sale! $36.98
    ArkivCD $34.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $36.98   ArkivCD:  $34.99 Add to Cart

  • 73.
    Philips 50 - Wagner: Parsifal / Knappertsbusch, Bayreuther
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 464756 Release Date: 10/30/2001   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Hans Hotter,  Jess Thomas,  Gustav Neidlinger,  Irene Dalis  ... 
    Conductor:  Hans Knappertsbusch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra,  Bayreuth Festival Chorus
    Recommendation
    On sale! $64.98
    ArkivCD $54.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $64.98   ArkivCD:  $54.99 Add to Cart

  • 74.
    Golden - Wagner: Tannhauser / Suitner, Rysanek, Et Al
    Label: Melodram   Catalog: 10050 Release Date: 09/25/2001   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Martti Talvela,  Barbro Ericson,  Leonie Rysanek,  Eberhard Wächter  ... 
    Conductor:  Otmar Suitner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bayreuth Festival Orchestra,  Bayreuth Festival Chorus
    On sale! $59.98
    CD: $57.49
    Special Order
    On sale!   $59.98   CD:  $57.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 75.
    Essential Beethoven - 24 Of His Greatest Masterpieces
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 468530 Release Date: 06/12/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Martti Talvela,  James King,  Marilyn Horne,  Dame Joan Sutherland  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Hans Schmidt-Isserstedt,  Piero Gamba,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus  ... 
    CD: $14.99
    In Stock
    MP3 Available
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

    MP3:  $11.99 Add MP3 to Cart

1 2 3 4