View Full Version : Deccas Siegfried 1962
04-30-2010, 09:35 PM
In Ring Resounding, John Culshaw describes a singer with a magnificent Helden tenor voice who couldn't learn the part and was replaced by Wolfgang Wingassen only as "Our Siegfried". Does anyone know who he was?
04-30-2010, 11:05 PM
From an LA Times 1965 article--
In London's recent Gotterdammerung for instance, the engineers have gone Wagner one better in the magic transformation scene. When Siefgried--tenor Wolfgang Windgassen--masquerades as Gunther--baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau--the tenor's voice is re-recorded at a different speed to mask its identity and add baritonal resonance. I don't have a clue if that helps.
05-01-2010, 02:39 PM
That's interesting, samclem, but I think the OP was asking about the identity of the original pick for the part of Siegfried on this recording, who was replaced by Wolfgang Windgassen.
This site says: (http://parterre.com/discs31.htm)
Casting the tenor parts in Wagner opera recordings has always been a problem, of course. The most famous example must be poor Ernst Kozub, in whom the gap between natural vocal endowment and depth of artistry was, it seems, staggeringly broad. Try though they might, Solti and the Decca engineers could not coax a respectable Siegfried out of him, despite all the time and effort expended in the effort. In the end, they persuaded him to let them dissolve his contract, and Wolfgang Windgassen replaced him on both Siegfried and (later) Goetterdaemmerung.
Kozub's bio (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Kozub) seems to bear this out:
Because of the quality of his voice John Culshaw cast him as Siegfried in the Decca recording of Der Ring des Nibelungen, but his ailing health (kept as a secret by him at that time), which prevented him mastering the role within the short period of time given him by Decca led to his unfortunate replacement at the last minute by Wolfgang Windgassen.
[Cue death scene of Ignorance, who is dramatically and fatally stabbed with an ornate legendary sword, collapses on stage and expires after the final high note of a ten-minute aria.]
05-01-2010, 03:08 PM
Actually, Ziggy gets it from behind with a spear. He tries to whack the bad guy, keels over and has some eighteen lines while he bleeds out. Wagner doesn't have arias in the Ring. :)
05-01-2010, 05:52 PM
That's interesting, samclem, but I think the OP was asking about the identity of the original pick for the part of Siegfried on this recording, who was replaced by Wolfgang Windgassen.]
Hey! It's opera. What do I know from opera?
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