Wagner: Die Walküre - Varnay, Hines, Crespin, Uhl, Resnik, Frick; Kempe. Bayreuth, 1961
Listen to a Sample:
This performance of Die Walküre has some very interesting features. First, is the Wotan of bass Jerome Hines. Although Hines had a long career at the Metropolitan Opera, he was often overlooked in the major Wagner roles. He brings an attractive bass-baritone and a straight-forward approach, making his Wotan seem more the "everyman" than god. Astrid Varnay was still in excellent voice in 1961 and sings with urgency and vigor. Regina Resnik brings a little bit of Klytämnestra to her Fricka making the character come across about as formidable as I have ever heard (you can see why Wotan would fold to her will so easily.) We all know Régine Crespin's Sieglinde from the Solti Ring. Out of the studio, she brings even more abandon to the role. Fritz Uhl is a sturdy, if somewhat monochromatic, Siegmund. The sound is excellent.