Wagner: Tannhäuser - Konwitschny
Tower Records Definition Serie TDSA-187/9 (3 discs)
Classical - Opera
Gottlob Frick (Hermann, Landgraf von Thüringen)
Hans Hopf (Tannhäuser)
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (Wolfram von Eschenbach)
Fritz Wunderlich (Walther von der Vogelweide)
Rudolf Gonszar (Biterolf)
Gerhard Unger (Heinrich der Schreiber)
Reiner Süss (Reinmar von Zweiter)
Elisabeth Grümmer (Elisabeth)
Marianne Schech (Venus)
Lisa Otto (Ein junger Hirt)
Manfred Koop, Arnold Schremm, Michael Wein & Karl-Heinz Voortmann (4 Edelknaben)
Chor und Orchester der Staatsoper Berlin
Franz Konwitschny (conductor)
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Comment by Andre Vital - July 5, 2022 (1 of 1)
Well...no previous EMI -TOCE equivalent remastering here!
This remastering vindicates this recording, not in isolated elements, as the Kempe Lohengrin, but as a Whole that is for sure, much more the mere sum of its parts.
The Decca/EMI "we have made the best recordings ever" has a strong prosecutor in this Tannhäuser. Hopf isn't the ideal protagonist, but it is "törig, wenn nicht gar tückish" to proclaim that other FAMOUS tenor set any standards, as far as this part is concerned! Had the recording been made 5 or some years before, Hopf would have swept the board, as he sounds here, he is a STANDART fo this part, and all the harmonics of his voice, that weren't present in all other editions (including LP and RTR ones).
And, on this subject - this is a thoroughly German effort, with a Stylistic awareness totally lacking in other recordings, because the Tonmeister approach, contrary to what John Culshaw preached, says wonderful dividends, added to that, I pretty much suspect that Vacuum Tube equipment was used here, because the recording has a clarity AND a deepness that not even the Janowski recording can match - the "holographic picture" of this recording establishes itself with the very first chord of the overture, and unshakably holds its ground up to the 2 huge act ensembles (and now one is able to hear Hopf's line, (written in so an embedded into the texture, that proves that, sung as it is should be sung, Tannhäuser is the most difficult Wagner Tenor's part - and one can here him do this live, on the Solti MET recording).
To say that all the other soloists are excellent is an understatement, they have channelled the composer's intentions up to the hilt, and Konwotschny is the main 'Medium'.