Elisabeth Schwarzkopf

Biography

Born: December 9, 1915; Germany   Died: August 4, 2006; Austria  
The daughter of a teacher, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf began to study voice in 1934 at the Berliner Musikhochschule with Lula Mysz-Gmeiner and with Maria Ivogun. She also studied lieder interpretation with Michael Raucheisen, Ivogun's husband. In 1938, Schwarzkopf debuted in Berlin as a Flower Maid in Parsifal. She remained in Berlin until 1944 when she joined the Vienna State Opera making her debut as Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos. Her first Read more international appearances were in 1947 at London with the Vienna State Opera on tour as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni and Marzelline in Fidelio. She became a regular guest at Covent Garden. That same year she made her debut at the Salzburg Festival and she appeared there nearly every year until 1964. At Salzburg she was best known for her Mozart roles of Donna Elvira, Countess in Le nozze di Figaro and Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, but also had great success as Alice Ford in Falstaff and the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier. Her recitals with Gerald Moore as accompanist at Salzburg were always highly regarded, but in 1953 the great conductor Wilhelm Furtwängler accompanied her in an all Wolf recital. Her Teatro alla Scala debut in 1949 as the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro was a great success and she sang there until 1964 in a variety of roles including Melisande, Carmina burana, Catulli Carmina, and Il Trionfo of Orff, Elisabeth in Tannhäuser, Elsa in Lohengrin, Anne in The Rake's Progress, Iole in Handel's Hercules, as well as her Mozart and Strauss roles. She made her San Francisco Opera debut in 1955, but did not sing at the Metropolitan Opera until 1964. Her belated debut there is attributed to her ties to the National Socialist regime in Germany and Austria.
As great as her reputation as an opera singer was, her work on the recital and concert stage had even higher acclaim. Her fame as a recitalist was matched only by that of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Her appearances were eagerly awaited around the world. In particular, her interpretations of the songs of Schubert, Strauss, and Wolf were admired. She is one of the few singers who was able to fulfill all of the requirements of an evening devoted to the songs of Wolf. On the concert stage she was often heard in cantatas and Passions of Bach, as well as the Verdi Requiem and symphonies of Mahler.
The voice of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf in her very early career was a light high soprano with excellent control of fioritura and breath control. As she matured, the middle and lower registers became much stronger and she began to sing more dramatic scores while giving up the lighter roles. By the late 1950s, she concentrated her operatic appearances on five or six roles to which she devoted great energy developing her interpretations to their highest level. This attention to detail and constant probing for added interpretive depth is the reason some writers find her performances too mannered and studied. In the recording studio, where she would work for hours perfecting one phrase, she was aided by her husband, record producer Walter Legge, in finding the perfect vocal color and phrasing to illuminate each piece. Even her most vocal critics stand in awe of the hard work that she brought to bear on even the simplest of songs. It is as a Mozart, Strauss and Wolf interpreter that Elisabeth Schwarzkopf will always be remembered. Read less
The Elizabeth Schwarzkopf Christmas Album
Release Date: 10/17/2000   Label: Warner Classics  
Catalog: 63574   Number of Discs: 1
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World Singers / Schwarzkopf, Sutherland, Ludwig, Gedda, Et Al
Release Date: 09/24/2002   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 2241   Number of Discs: 1
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Handel: Messiah / Klemperer, Schwarzkopf, Gedda
Release Date: 10/31/2007   Label: Warner Classics  
Catalog: 63621   Number of Discs: 3
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Browse 1-25 of 200 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Mozart: Die Zauberflote / Gedda, Klemperer, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 557671 Release Date: 10/14/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Gottlob Frick,  Franz Crass,  Gerhard Unger,  Walter Berry  ... 
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Philharmonia Chorus
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  • 2.
    Mozart: Don Giovanni / Wachter, Giulini, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 557672 Release Date: 10/14/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Graziella Sciutti,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Eberhard Wächter,  Dame Joan Sutherland  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Philharmonia Chorus
    CD: $38.99
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  • 3.
    Mozart: Le nozze di Figaro / Schwarzkopf, Karajan, Vienna Philharmonic
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 557377 Release Date: 09/09/2016  
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Erich Kunz,  Irmgard Seefried,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Sena Jurinac  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
    CD: $16.99
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  • 4.
    Verdi: Falstaff / Gobbi, Karajan, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 557379 Release Date: 09/09/2016   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Rolando Panerai,  Tito Gobbi,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Anna Moffo  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Philharmonia Chorus
    CD: $16.99
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  • 5.
    Beethoven: Symphony No. 9
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 554167 Release Date: 06/24/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Ernst Haefliger,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Marga Höffgen,  Otto Edelmann
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
    CD: $12.99
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  • 6.
    R. Strauss: Capriccio / Schwarzkopf, Sawallisch, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 555534 Release Date: 05/20/2016   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Eberhard Wächter,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Nicolai Gedda  ... 
    Conductor:  Wolfgang Sawallisch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
    CD: $16.99
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  • 7.
    Mozart: Cosi fan Tutte / Bohm, Schwarzkopf, Ludwig, Kraus, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 554003 Release Date: 01/29/2016   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Hannelore Steffek,  Walter Berry,  Giuseppe Taddei,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Chorus,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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    CD: $22.99
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  • 8.
    Schubert: Symphony No. 9; Beethoven: Finale of the Symphony No. 9 / Furtwӓngler
    Label: Praga   Catalog: 350085 Release Date: 01/08/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Elsa Cavelti,  Otto Edelmann,  Ernst Hafliger,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Lucerne Festival Chorus
    SuperAudio CD: $23.99
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  • 9.
    Elisabeth Schwarzkopf: The Complete Recitals 1952-74
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 553028 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 31
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Strauss,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  Edwin Fischer,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Anny Felbermayer,  Josef Metternich  ... 
    Conductor:  John Pritchard,  Otto Ackermann,  Lovro von Matacic,  Josef Krips  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Ambrosian Singers,  Philharmonia Chorus  ... 
    CD: $86.99
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  • 10.
    Operetten Gala
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 14025 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Emmerich Kálmán,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Eduard Künneke,  Walter Kollo  ... 
    Performer:  Heinz [Tenor Vocal] Hoppe,  Ruth Margaret Putz,  Hermann [Baritone Vocal] Prey,  Peter Anders  ... 
    Conductor:  Hansgeorg Otto,  Otto Ackermann,  Harry Herrmann,  Wilhelm Schluchter  ... 
    CD: $34.99
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  • 11.
    Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 / Furtwangler, Philharmonia Orchestra [Vinyl]
    Label: Audite   Catalog: AUD80461 Release Date: 10/09/2015   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Ernst Haefliger,  Elsa Cavelti,  Otto Edelmann,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Lucerne Festival Chorus,  Philharmonia Orchestra
    LP: $39.99
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  • 12.
    Glenn Gould Remastered: The Complete Columbia Album Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 503222 Release Date: 10/09/2015   Number of Discs: 81
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Glenn Gould,  Elizabeth Benson-Guy,  Donald Gramm,  Charles Bressler  ... 
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein,  Walter Susskind,  Vladimir Golschmann,  Igor Stravinsky  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  CBC Symphony Orchestra,  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  Symphonia String Quartet  ... 
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  • 13.
    Mahler: Symphony No. 2
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 552126 Release Date: 09/18/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Hilde Rössl-Majdan,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer
    CD: $18.99
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  • 14.
    Richard Strauss: Four Last Songs; Lieder
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 552136 Release Date: 09/18/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Unspecified
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Edith Peinemann
    Conductor:  George Szell
    CD: $12.99
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  • 15.
    Twenty Gems Of Viennese Operetta
    Label: Musical Concepts   Catalog: 1249 Release Date: 07/24/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Richard Heuberger,  Carl Zeller,  Karl Millöcker  ... 
    Performer:  Hilde Gueden,  Sándor Kónya,  Helga Hildebrand,  Anneliese Rothenberger  ... 
    Conductor:  Robert Stolz,  Fried Walter,  Werner Schmidt-Boelcke,  Heinrich Hollreiser  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Orchestra,  FFB Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $9.99
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  • 16.
    Richard Wagner: Die Meistersinger Von Nurnberg
    Label: Walhall   Catalog: 202 Release Date: 04/14/2015   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Otto Edelmann,  Hans Hopf,  Gerhard Unger,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Hans Rosbaud
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RAI National Symphony Orchestra,  RAI Chorus
    CD: $12.99
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  • 17.
    Elisabeth Schwarzkopf - Early Years (1939-1950)
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 2111 Release Date: 04/07/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Georges Bizet,  Giacomo Puccini,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Irmgard Seefried,  Rupert Glawitsch
    Conductor:  Alceo Galliera,  Braithwaite,  Herbert von Karajan,  Walter Lutze
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  • 18.
    R. Strauss: 4 Last Songs; Capriccio Closing Scene; Wagner: Wotan's Farewell
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 7072 Release Date: 12/09/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Otto Edelmann
    Conductor:  Otto Ackermann
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  • 19.
    Beethoven: Symphony No 9 / Furtwangler, Schwarzkopf, Cavelti, Haefliger, Edelmann
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 92641 Release Date: 11/18/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Otto Edelmann,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Elsa Cavelti,  Ernst Haefliger
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Lucerne Festival Chorus
    Recommendation
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  • 20.
    Beethoven: Symphony No 9 / Furtwangler, Schwarzkopf, Cavelti, Haefliger, Edelmann
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 95641 Release Date: 11/18/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Ernst Haefliger,  Elsa Cavelti,  Otto Edelmann,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Lucerne Festival Chorus
    CD: $14.99
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  • 21.
    Maria Callas Remastered - Complete Studio Recordings
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633991 Release Date: 09/23/2014   Number of Discs: 70
    Composer:  Vincenzo Bellini,  Richard Wagner,  Amilcare Ponchielli,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Callas,  Gianni Poggi,  Fedora Barbieri,  Paolo Silveri  ... 
    Conductor:  Arturo Basile,  Antonino Votto,  Gabriele Santini,  Tullio Serafin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Turin,  Italian Radio Chorus Turin,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $274.99
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  • 22.
    Puccini: Turandot / Serafin, Callas, Schwarzkopf
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 634100 Release Date: 09/23/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini
    Performer:  Elisabetta Fusco,  Giulio Mauri,  Maria Callas,  Nicola Zaccaria  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus
    CD: $21.99
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  • 23.
    Karajan 1947-1958: Bach, Beethoven, Brahms - Choral Music
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633629 Release Date: 05/13/2014   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Nicolai Gedda,  Marga Höffgen,  Heinz Rehfuss  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Vienna Singverein,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $29.99
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  • 24.
    Richard Strauss: Don Juan; Tod Und Verklarung; Till Eulenspiegel Lustige Streiche; Vier Letzte Lieder
    Label: Praga   Catalog: 350100 Release Date: 05/13/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler,  Otto Ackermann
    SuperAudio CD: $24.99
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  • 25.
    Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9; Overtures / Karajan, Philharmonia Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633735 Release Date: 04/08/2014   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Otto Edelmann,  Ernst Haefliger,  Marga Höffgen,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Vienna Friends of Music Society Chorus
    Recommendation
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