Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen [Box Set]

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
If Decca had issued this 1955 Bayreuth performance of Wagner's "Der Ring des Nibelungen" in 1956 instead of shelving it until Testament issued it in 2007, what would have happened? As the first complete "Ring" cycle, it would no doubt have been greeted with cheers from the composer's many fans, and as a real, if cramped, stereo recording in the early years of stereo, it would likely have been embraced by the burgeoning fans of the incipient technology. But what then? Would a generation of music lovers have embraced Wagner's 14-hour masterpiece on the basis of this performance and this recording? Would studio recordings of the work by other conductors have followed? Would ...
See more details below
CD
$196.64
BN.com price
(Save 5%)$206.99 List Price
Other sellers (CD)
  • All (2) from $162.16   
  • New (2) from $162.16   

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
If Decca had issued this 1955 Bayreuth performance of Wagner's "Der Ring des Nibelungen" in 1956 instead of shelving it until Testament issued it in 2007, what would have happened? As the first complete "Ring" cycle, it would no doubt have been greeted with cheers from the composer's many fans, and as a real, if cramped, stereo recording in the early years of stereo, it would likely have been embraced by the burgeoning fans of the incipient technology. But what then? Would a generation of music lovers have embraced Wagner's 14-hour masterpiece on the basis of this performance and this recording? Would studio recordings of the work by other conductors have followed? Would live performances by Knappertsbusch and Furtwängler have been released? Probably not. There are great moments in these performances of "Das Rheingold," "Die Walküre," "Siegfried," and "Götterdämmerung" led by Joseph Keilberth, one per opera and always right at the end. The entry of the gods in the "Walhalla" is majestic, the "Magic Fire" music is scorching, the duet of Siegfried and Brünnhilde is searing, and the apocalypse at the close of "Götterdämmerung" is all-consuming. But through too much of the rest of the operas, Keilberth merely seems to be beating time with the stage action. The rich web of Wagner's thematic counterpoint and the irresistible surge of his harmonic waves are pretty much missing, replaced by reliable but uninspired music making from the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra. There are, admittedly, many fine vocal performances here. Both Astrid Varnay's passionate Brünnhilde and Hans Hotter's tragic Wotan are superb realizations. Wolfgang Windgassen's "Siegfried" is less compelling, but his voice is at its freshest and that helps a lot. But fine as these performances are, they were to a greater or lesser extent typical of Bayreuth in the '50s, a true silver age for Wagner singing, and performances of this quality can also be heard in many other productions from those years. Had this "Ring" been released at the time, these performances would probably have been outstanding souvenirs of that period much prized by vocal enthusiasts. But the Keilberth "Ring" would not have changed the world, and the most important result of it not being released at the time is that Decca instead recorded and released Georg Solti's "Ring." Recorded in resplendent studio stereo with a strong cast and the hyperkinetic Hungarian on the podium, the Solti "Ring" did change the world. Not only did it make the conductor's reputation, it turned on a generation of classical music fans for whom listening straight through the Solti "Ring" became a rite of passage and a badge of honor. While any Wagner fan will surely welcome the release of the Keilberth "Ring," few will wish it had been released instead of the Solti.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/12/2008
  • Label: Testament Uk
  • UPC: 749677141226
  • Catalog Number: 1412
  • Sales rank: 94,624

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–191 Der Ring des Nibelungen, opera tetralogy - Richard Wagner & Toni Blankenheim (843:52)
Read More Show Less

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Joseph Keilberth Primary Artist
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews