Humperdinck: Hänsel Und Gretel / Karajan, Schwarzkopf, Et Al

Release Date: 9/21/1999
Catalog Number: 724356714526
Number of Discs: 2

Physical Format:

CD
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Notes and Editorial Reviews
This 1953 recording of Engelbert Humperdinck's signature work stands as the best recording of the opera that exists. Humperdinck's enchanting adaptation of the fairy tale (first popularized by the Brothers Grimm) simultaneously requires an orchestra capable of mastering the protean post-Wagnerian score and a vocal cast capable of conveying rustic and heartfelt simplicity. With Herbert von Karajan at the helm of the Philharmonia Orchestra and with Elisabeth Grümmer heading the cast in the role of Hänsel, Humperdinck has found his most convincing and sympathetic interpreters to date.
At the time of the initial release of this recording, critics were unanimous in their praise of the captivatingly pure singing of Grümmer, who had by then distinguished herself with beautiful interpretations of the music of Mozart and Strauss. The Mozart-Strauss repertory also claimed the celebrated Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, who, as the Gretel to Grümmer's Hänsel, brings a lovely fresh-voiced innocence to her portrayal. When the two of them come together, as in the "Evening Prayer" of the second act, the results are magical.
Works on This Recording
1. Hänsel und Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck
Performer: Maria von Ilosvay (Alto), Else Schürhoff (Mezzo Soprano), Josef Metternich (Baritone), Elisabeth Grümmer (Soprano), Elisabeth Schwarzkopf (Soprano), Anny Felbermayer (Soprano)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1893 ; Germany
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