Wagner: Die Walküre - Valkki, Vickers, Watson, Gorr, Hotter, Langdon; Solti. London, 1961
Listen to a Sample:
If you love Georg Solti's Ring Cycle, you will probably love this recording. Like the Decca set, it features Hans Hotter as Wotan who is in slightly fresher form here. Claire Watson has graduated from Gutrune to Sieglinde. I prefer her to Regine Crespin (although she is wonderful, too.) Her high notes gleam in a way Crespin's do not and there is more purity in her tone. Jon Vickers sings Siegmund. In 1961 he hadn't adopted all of his mannerisms yet and sings sincerely and with amazing power. The Brünnhilde is a soprano named Anita Valkki. I had never heard of her before but she sings it quite well with lush, Nordic tone. Rita Gorr is a regal Fricka. As for Solti, he conducts Wagner with such fire. He is a wonderful antidote to some of the conductors who use glacially slow tempi. The sound is very good.