1966-03-12, English, Article, Journal or magazine article edition: RECORDS Fallen Angel (12 March 1966)

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RECORDS Fallen Angel (12 March 1966)
 
Bookmark: https://trove.nla.gov.au/version/258406048
Physical Description
  • 572 words
  • article
  • Journals
  • Magazines
Published
  • xna, John Haynes and J.F. Archibald, 1966-03-12
Language
  • English

Edition details

Title
  • RECORDS Fallen Angel (12 March 1966)
Appears In
  • The bulletin., v.88, no.4488, 1966-03-12 (ISSN: 0007-4039)
Other Contributors
  • JOHN CARGHER
Published
  • xna, John Haynes and J.F. Archibald, 1966-03-12
Physical Description
  • 572 words
  • article
  • Journals
  • Magazines
Series
Part Of
  • The bulletin.
  • Vol. 88 No. 4488 (12 Mar 1966)
  • John Ryan Comic Collection (Specific issues).
Subjects
Summary
  • RECORDS Fallen Angel The Tales of Hoffmann. (Offenbach) Nicolai lai Gedda, Gianna d’Angelo, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Victoria de los Angeles, George London, Ernest Blanc, Paris Conservatoire servatoire Orchestra (Andre Cluytens). Angel SAN 154/​6. The Magic Flute. (Mozart) Dietrich Fischer- Dieskau, Evelyn Lear, Fritz Wunderlich, Roberta Peters, Franz Crass, Lisa Otto, Hans Hotter. Berlin Philharmonic (Karl Boehm). Deutsche Grammophon SKL 181/​3. “ITlhe best laid plans of mice and mep . . .” No plan could have been better laid than the new recording of “The Tales of Hoffmann” and no one is sadder than I to see it fail on so many counts. Admittedly the latest version sion of Offenbach’s minor masterpiece is the best to date, but it was clearly intended tended to become some kind of milestone on Angel’s highway to success. The combination bination of Elizabeth Schwarzkopf and Victoria de los Angeles in one set should mean major sales and probably will long after the critics’ opinions have been forgotten. gotten. The casting of Nicolai Gedda, at the peak of a not inconsiderable career right now, could hardly be bettered. George London’s presence should please his many American followers and the large cast of French supporting singers and Cluytens’ conducting assures good sales in France. What then went wrong? To begin, the production lacks theatrical rical feeling for a most theatrical subject. There is no sense of movement or dramatic atic continuity, sound effects are dismal and one has a mental picture of singers standing stodgily with sheets of music in their hands. With the exception of Gedda none seems to have any feeling for their parts at all. Gianna d’Angelo is best all round as the doll, Olympia. Vocally Schwarzkopf sounds oldish, but Giulietta lietta is surely an ageing courtesan seducing ing a young man, and the voice is surprisingly prisingly lush for Schwarzkopf. Victoria de los Angeles (Antonia), on the other hand, is the greatest disappointment of the set. Not only is the voice forced at times, more often than not it is way off the note. What a pity! The casting of two baritones as the villains of the three stories is hard to understand. Three or one, yes. But two? In any case George London, who sings (?) both Coppelius and Dr Miracle, is incredibly coarse in voice and manner, in strong contrast to Ernest Blanc who does very well as Dapertutto. The radical cal departure from tradition of using a baritone instead of a contralto as Nicklaus laus succeeds in my opinion and a newcomer, comer, Jean-Christophe Benoit, makes the most of his chances. That leaves Gedda who is superb in every way, though £ven he allows some sloppiness during the climaxes which he can clearly handle with ease. Overall, then, one can only express surprise that Cluytens (who conducts very well indeed) deed) and the producers were satisfied to leave a basically excellent set with so many unnecessary blemishes. The new “Magic Flute” in contrast is fine in all departments and starts with the flying handicap of being fully a third cheaper than its only serious competitor, the Klemperer Angel set. With one exception ception all of Deutsche Grammophon’s artists are as good or better than Angel’s, only Roberta Peters being comparatively weak as a precise, lady-like and totally unthrilling Queen of the Night. Wunderlich lich (superb), Dieskau, Crass and Lear excel and Boehm conducts with all the right touches in all the right places. Definitely recommended! JOHN CARGHER
Terms of Use
  • In Copyright
Language
  • English
Identifier
  • AP7 (LC)

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