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WAGNER, Don Garrard, April Cantelo, Della Janes, BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra, Edward Downes

Die Feen

  • Don Garrard - bass
  • April Cantelo - soprano
  • Della Janes - soprano
  • BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra - orchestra
  • Edward Downes - conductor
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119.00 PLN

3 CD:

Nr kat.: PO1027
Label  : Ponto

Der Feenkönig Don Garrard Ada April Cantelo Farzana Delia Jones Zemina Elizabeth Gale Arindal John Mitchinson Lora Lorna Haywood Morald Tom McDonnell Gernot Paul Hudson Drolla Teresa Cahill Gunther Richard Greager Harald Don Garrard Ein Bote Jolyon Dodgson Edward Downes BBC Northern Singers and Symphony Orchestra J. Gibbons 5.0 out of 5 stars A Splendid Discovery! 5 August 2009 Die Feen, Wagner's first completed opera, has been almost completely ignored and this is a great pity because it contains some delightful music in the romantic style. The plot is silly, but not more so than many other better known operas. However the writing for orchestra and voice is thoroughly professional and the whole work is a remarkable achievement for a twenty year old composer. Of course Die Feen is very unlike Wagner's later mature operas and, apart from Ada's scena and aria in Act 2, contains little music that is much played today. However, taken on its own terms, it is a work that will certainly be enjoyed by anyone, Wagnerian or not, who like the music of the romantic era and especially that of Weber and Beethoven. This performance, directed by the late lamented Sir Edward Downes, is first class. The orchestra and chorus (BBC Northern) play very well indeed and all the soloists are first class. April Cantelo, Della Jones, and John Mitchinson are outstanding but the rest of the cast are never less than excellent. However, Edward Downes' direction is what really stands out. His pace is perfect. His phrasing is exquisite but his direction is always at the service of his singers and he is able to bring out their best. Recording quality is excellent and this issue can be recommended to all who would like to explore this facinating work. As a bonus, this issue contains some extracts from an abriged concert performance in Vienna conducted by Sixten Ehrling and featuring Gundula Janowitz as Ada. These are interesting to hear but not essential listening. Janowitz sings well but April Cantelo is just as good. Also Ehrling's direction is certainly inferior to Sir Edward's.