Friday, 7 October 2011

Walkure Act 2, San Francisco 1936

Reiner, Melchior and Flagstad backstage at the War Memorial Opera House during this performance
 The San Francisco Opera achieved something remarkable with this broadcast, as it is the only recording to feature two of the greatest sopranos of age, Flagstad and Lehmann, on the same stage. Despite them signing many times together, this was only time microphones captured Lehmann's justifiably famous Sieglinde alongside Flagstad's unparalleled Brunnhilde. When the cast is augmented by the likes of Melchior and Schorr, respectively the world's best Siegmund and Wotan, it was truly a memorable night.  Although cuts were used in performance, the NBC also annoyingly cut off the last minute or so to make way for the next scheduled programme. You can hear the music continuing behind the announcer and one can't help wondering why they didn't cut some of the announcements at the start and have more music, but we have to live with it.

Wagner: Die Walküre
San Francisco Opera
Friday, November 13 1936

Conductor, Fritz Reiner

Brünnhilde Kirsten Flagstad
Sieglinde Lotte Lehmann
Fricka Kathryn Meisle
Siegmund Lauritz Melchior
Wotan Friedrich Schorr

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