Search - Richard Wagner, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Plácido Domingo :: Der fliegende Holländer / Weikl, Studer, Domingo, Sotin, Seiffert; Sinopoli

Der fliegende Holländer / Weikl, Studer, Domingo, Sotin, Seiffert; Sinopoli
Richard Wagner, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Plácido Domingo
Der fliegende Holländer / Weikl, Studer, Domingo, Sotin, Seiffert; Sinopoli
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (16) - Disc #2

For some bizarre reason only failing marketing execs know, this fascinating reading of Dutchman has been sitting, unreleased, in DG's vaults since 1991. The performance is, to be sure, unorthodox: Even if one argues, corre...  more »

     
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For some bizarre reason only failing marketing execs know, this fascinating reading of Dutchman has been sitting, unreleased, in DG's vaults since 1991. The performance is, to be sure, unorthodox: Even if one argues, correctly, that this is Wagner's most Italianate opera (and that he was writing treatises in defense of Bellini at the time), the sheer "Italian-ness" of Sinopoli's reading is certain to amaze. The long melodies are emphasized, legato is ever-present (Senta's opening humming actually sounds like Bellini), rubato is thick, and even the singers' diction seems to be (purposefully) soft. Bernd Weikl, with a voice ideally about only 2/3 the weight really needed for the role, sings a highly nuanced, interesting Dutchman, and Cheryl Studer's Senta, while lacking the insane intensity Rysanek brought to the role, is weirdly, wonderfully interior and sings up a storm. Placido Domingo is cookie-cutter ardent, singing with bright tone and little thought. Hans Sotin's Daland is dullish; Peter Seiffert's Steersman is distinguished. Highest marks go to Sinopoli, though: Tempi are quick and tension is high, but there's never a feeling of being rushed, and dynamic markings are scrupulously observed. The chorus is super, as is the orchestra. Bellini's music, Wagner wrote, had "real passion." You'll find it here. --Robert Levine
 

CD Reviews

An essential modern Wagner performance.
lebaut | 08/26/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Here is the perfect answer to the Beckmessers who keep saying that no Wagner recording of today can match the historical recordings of the 50's and the 60's. For this may, in fact, be the best Fliegende Holländer ever. Well... of course, as far as vocal power and musical intelligence are concerned, Weikl can't rival the supreme Hotter - or even the brutish London -. But still, his presence is real, and he uses the occasional weaknesses of his ageing voice to compose a deep and haunted and attaching character. As for Sotin, who can be a most routine-minded singer if badly conducted, he will seem rather transfigured to those who have seen him in Bayreuth, as he takes full advantage of his still very beautiful voice to explore all the aspects of Daland's character. But the true marvels of this album lie elsewhere. The first jewel is undoubtedly Domingo's performance, which simply eclipses all the Eriks of the whole discography : the incredible beauty, the unimaginable warmth and the baffling youth of the voice, along with the incandescence of the incarnation alone would make this album worth buying. But they are more than matched by a young Studer at her best, in what may be her best recorded opera performance. One doesn't know what to praise most : the purity, the power and the magnificence of the voice, the extreme commitment of the artist (who shows once more that, though limited as an actress on stage, she can convey an immense range of emotions with her only voice) or her capacity to impose, with her own, specific abilities, a completely new vision of Senta's character - a sort of child-woman, lost in her dreams but with an incredibly strong personality -. But all of that would certainly not have been possible without the iron hand of a fantastic project manager. Imposing a lightning tension from the very beginning of the Overture, Maestro Sinopoli never releases his grip until the very end of the opera, and manages to keep the listener's full attention to the drama from the very first note to the very last, thus delivering an amazing lesson of how young Wagner should be conducted - somewhere between Dorati's italianism end Klemperer's romantism, but with more dramatic sense than the first, and less German heaviness than the second -. So... good news : for once, you won't have to make do with the cracklings of a live recording from 40 years ago to enjoy a Wagner opera at its best !"
The best modern Dutchman, in great sound
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 09/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The Flying Dutchman has always been a conductor's opera. The orchestral writing is stormy and dramatic, the overture a great showpiece, the third act full of ensemble work for the chorus. Sinopoli masters all these aspects of the opera and is aided by wonderful, natural recorded sound.

His cast includes a great lyrical Senta in Cheryl Studer and stellar casting in Domingo as the hapless lover Eric. Everyone in fact is so good that this would be a unsurpassed modern Dutchman if it weren't for Weikl in the lead role. Germany ra out of first-rate Wagner baritones for a while, and Weikl filled the void as best he could. He has a good solid voice but a stolid sense of characerization--his cursed sea captain doesn't resonate with suffering or mythical loneliness. But in his middle-of-the-road way Weikl is far from being bad, and all around him you get an absolutely riveting rpoduction."
The Ultimate Dutchman
Eric S. Kim | Southern California | 01/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Sinopoli's rendition of Wagner's first successful opera, Der Fliegende Hollander, is something that (almost) everyone should own. The orchestral feeling of the stormy sea is both enchanting and furious at the same time. Cheryl Studer is magnificient when singing Senta's Ballad, and Placido Domingo does what he does best as Erik. The choir and the orchestra are in top form and the fast tempi Sinopoli chooses is well done and exhilarating.

I don't know about the other two reviewers that gave this CD one and two stars out of five, but this Hollander is here to stay. And stay away from James Levine's rendition; it's so slow that you'll fall asleep right after the Overture."