CD: Wagner – Die Walküre: Act 1
LPO conducted by Tennstedt
Richard Wagner (1813–1883)
Die Walküre: Act 1
Klaus Tennstedt conductor
London Philharmonic Orchestra
David Nolan leader
Premiered in Munich in 1870, Die Walküre remains one of the most popular operas. Act 1 is often performed alone in concert, with its satisfying concentration on the very human story of the blood ties, love and loyalty between three characters. Packed full of thrilling music, it displays Wagner's musical exuberance and assured grasp of orchestral colouring, vividly brought to life in this live recording conducted by Klaus Tennstedt in 1991 (released here, from the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s archives, for the first time). He exposes the anguish and passion of this tale of love and betrayal, with three of the greatest singers of these roles at the height of their powers.
BBC Radio 3 Record Review Disc of the Week 1 October 2016
No. 8 in the Official Specialist Classical Chart 7 October 2016‘
Typically, [Tennstedt] takes his time, but it’s so intelligently paced and powerfully animated that the tension and the passions build from that orchestral introduction until they explode in the third scene ... it absolutely deserves the accolade [of Disc of the Week]'.
Andrew McGregor, BBC Radio 3 Record Review, October 2016
‘By 1991 illness had made Klaud Tennstedt’s appearances few and far between. He also recorded little Wagner, so this live recording of Act 1 of Die Walküre from the Royal Festival Hall is a rare souvenir ... playing of special depth and inspiration. Nothing Tennstedt did was every ordinary’.
Financial Times, October 2016
‘This 1991 concert performance still sweeps you away, such is the beauty of the LPO’s playing, and such is Tennstedt’s command of dynamics and passionate engagement with Wagner’s music at the zenith of its mastery’.
The Sunday Times, November 2016 (four stars)
This is more than just a record of a great occasion. It is that of course, but it is also a terrific performance ... This is definitely desirable for the library shelves ... a vividly dramatic moment in operatic history’.
Planet Hugill, November 2016
‘The chief cause of ecstasy is the inspired playing of the LPO, whose intensity is electrifying ... Rarely have I heard it feel so complete as in this performance’.
BBC Music Magazine, November 2016 (four stars)
‘The orchestral playing is at boiling point right from the start here, with Tennstedt on inspirational form ... These must have been nights to remember for listeners at the Royal Festival Hall ... Excellent sound quality’.
Hi-Fi News, December 2016
‘Tennstedt certainly gives it a compelling sense of sweep and cohesiveness in an account that is distinguished by a refreshing lyrical generosity and some fabulous playing from the LPO. The recorded sound ... is extremely good, too’.
Opera, December 2016
‘A well-worked triumph for its intelligent and experienced performers’.
Gramophone, December 2016