Wagner: Die Walküre - Varnay, Zadek, Hurshell, Høiseth, Kenney; Quennet. Berlin, 1963


Listen to a Sample:


In 1963, when this performance of Die Walküre took place, Astrid Varnay was 44, an age normally when dramatic sopranos start moving into Wagner.  For Varnay, however, she had been singing it for over twenty years.   Few sopranos in the history of opera can make that claim.   Her experience pays off in this performance and she delivers a poignant portrayal.   Her voice may bare some of the scars of such a long time singing Wagner but she manages, like the intelligent singer she was, to work through the rough patches.  Hilde Zadek's voice also seems a little rough around the edges at times especially in the middle of the voice.   However her top is very exciting and the notes gleam.   Kolbjørn Høiseth is a fine Siegmund.   Edmond Hurshell is sturdy as Wotan although the pitches sag at times.  The sound is excellent. 

OD 10303-3