Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen
Stolze, Gerhard; Moussa-Felderer, Ingeborg; Hoffmann, Grace; Kraus, Herold; Steiner, Elizabeth; Hoeffgen, Marga; Ward, David; Kempe, Rudolf; Uhl, Fritz; Roth-Ehrang, Peter; Schmidt, Wilma; Bayreuther Festspiele; Hines, Jerome; Stewart, Thomas; Thaw, David; Crespin, Regine; Schärtel, Elisabeth; Bayreuth Festival Chorus; Frick, Gottlob; Hopf, Hans; Varnay, Astrid; Kraus, Otakar; Milligan, James; Nilsson, Birgit; Resnik, Regina
Richard Wagner’s Ring has been performed in the highly reduced version by Wieland Wagner at the eight Beyreuth festivals since the re-opening of the theatre in 1951. Although his version- still sparing in comparison with today’s staging concepts- depended on its use of lighting and special effects, he took the opportunity to bring in a complete musical overhaul: direction of the production was given to the 48-year-old conductor Rudolf Kempe. While a younger generation was taking over on the conductor’s rostrum at the new Bayreuth, a new generation of singers was also finding its feet in the great Ring roles. In the new production, tenor Gerhard Stolze was able to build on his finely acted, declamatory portrayal of Mime that he had taken on in 1957. Regine Crespin, who had successfully taken the role of Kundry in Parsifal in Bayreuth since 1958 and only appeared in the Ring that one year, imbued the role of Sieglinde with the touching emotionality of her highly dramatic soprano voice, and gave a persuasive reading, with the young Fritz Uhl playing her loving brother.