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  • Herman Uhde - bass
  • BERG
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49.00 PLN

2 CD:

Nr kat.: GL100749
Label  : GALA Records

James A. Altena 3.0 out of 5 stars Only Half a Loaf July 4, 2011 Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase Hermann Uhde (1914-65) has long been a favorite singer of mine. His immediately recognizable baritone had a unique sound that is difficult to characterize, combining covered low notes with an open, somewhat edgy top, that made it ideal for portraying tormented or anguished characters, or those with a craven or evil nature. A mainstay of the Bayreuth Festival during the 1950s, he was nonpareil in such roles as Klingsor, Gunther, Telramund, and the Dutchman, but was unfortunately overshadowed by figures such as Hans Hotter and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. He also sang at the Met, where on short notice he once sang both Amfortas and Klingsor in a single performance of Parsifal. He met an untimely end when he suffered a heart attack on stage in a performance in Copenhagen and died en route to the hospital. Most of the contents of this two-CD set previously appeared on a 1982 two-LP set on the Melodram label. The LP set had fifteen good-sized gatefold album jacket photos of Uhde in various roles but no notes; the CD issue has a booklet with notes but only one photo. Except for some 78rpm recordings made in 1937 at the onset of Uhde's career, these all live performances; the sound therefore varies according to the sources, but is generally listenable for those used to historical performances. The CD compilation omits three items from the LP issue -- excerpts from Siegfried and Elektra, and a brief snippet from a 1951 performance of Carl Orff's Antigone conducted by Georg Solti -- and substitutes instead 55 minutes of music from an undated performance of Antigone conducted by Heinrich Hollreiser. Unfortunately the alterations are uniformly for the worse. Antigone is one of the most awful excuses for an opera ever written, and almost an hour of it is well-nigh unendurable. Also, much of the added material features singers other than Uhde, in an album that is putatively devoted to that singer. Another problem is that some of the material does not feature Uhde at his riveting best; in the excerpts from Parsifal (as Amfortas) and Fidelio (as Don Pizarro) he suffers from serious intonation problems, and the three Schubert songs show that lieder was not his metier. One wishes for the excerpt from Handel's Julius Caesar to be moved to the first CD, and the Parsifal excerpt to be replaced by the Siegfried excerpt from the LP set, and the result issued as a single CD instead. So, while Uhde fans will still want to get this, be advised that you are essentially buying only one CD worth of worthwhile material in a two-CD set. postupano 5.0 out of 5 stars An Uhde sampler February 19, 2011 I was lured to this recording by the brief excerpt featuring Eleanor Steber in "Wozzeck," but the main attraction is well worth your attention if you're a fan of great bass-baritones. Hermann Uhde (1914-1965) was a German-American artist perhaps best known to collectors in iconic London/Decca Bayreuth recordings of Lohengrin, Parsifal and the Flying Dutchman under Keilberth and Knappertsbusch . I hadn't realized until reading this recording's booklet that Uhde basically died in harness,suffering a massive heart attack during a performance and passing away shortly thereafter. Were he around today I suspect he would have been at the top of list for Wagnerian heldenbariton roles. This well-filled two-disc set provides examples of his art ranging from 1937 to 1960. There are generous selections of Wagner, the big bass moments from Verdi's "Don Carlo," and a large chunk (54 minutes' worth)of Orff's "Antigonae." Since Amazon has not included track information, here are brief details: Disc 1:(68 minutes) Wagner: "Abendlich strahlt" (Das Rheingold) and "Brunnhild' die hehrste Frau (Gotterdammerung); both Met Opera/Stiedry 1957; Wotan's Farewell (Die Walkure) Met Opera/Mitropoluos 1960 "Wehvolles Erbe" (Parsifal) Met Opera/Stiedry 1956 Verdi, Don Carlo:"Ella giammai m'amo" (in German) Bremen Radio SO/H.Eckner 1937 and "Son io dinanzi al Re?" with Jerome Hines as Filippo Met Opera/Cleva 1959 Strauss, Arabella:"So wie Sie sind" with Lisa Della Casa RO Covent Garden/Kempe 1953 Berg,Wozzeck: Scene of Marie's murder (in English) with Eleanor Steber Met Opera/Bohm 1959 Beethoven, Fidelio: "Ha! welch' ein Augenblick Met Opera/Bohm 1960 Weber,Der Freischutz: "Hier im ird'schen Jammertal" Bremen Radio SO/H.Eckner 1937 Disc 2: (68 minutes) Handel, Julius Caesar: "Aus der Brandung" Bremen Radio SO/H.Eckner 1937 Orff, Antigonae:extended excerpts from Acts 3-5 with Uhde as Kreon,Christl Goltz (Antigone),Josef Greindl (Bote), Hilde Roessl-Majdan (Eurydike) Vienna State Opera/Hollreiser Schubert, 3 songs (Das Rosenband, Das Geheimnis, Der Jungling an der Quelle) with Hans Gehl, piano Radio Bremen 1949 The booklet includes detailed track listings and an appreciation of Uhde and his career as well as a few lines about some of the other singers. A cautionary note: if you haven't heard any Orff outside of "Carmina Burana," you may lose patience with the declamatory style of "Antigonae," but the set is cheap enough that you can skip those tracks with a clear conscience. If your appetite is whetted by the Wagner selections, many of the live performances excerpted can be found on labels that specialize in historical reissues. Recommended for fans of great Wagner singing.