Richard Wagner - Orchestral Music from the Operas (Rienzi, Tannhauser, Lohengrin, Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg,
Das Rheingold, Die Walkure, Siegfried, Gotterdammerung) (Klaus Tennstedt) (2005)
Classical | Eac. Flac, Tracks+Cue, Log | Scans | 420.01 MB
Label: EMI | TT: 1:37:12
When these discs were originally released singly in the early '80s, they were not only marvelous recordings of the purely orchestral music from Wagner's operas, they announced the arrival of a marvelous new conductor. At the time, Klaus Tennstedt was known only as the conductor of several astonishingly good recordings of Mahler's symphonies, but his abilities in the standard repertoire were as yet unknown. But with these two discs of recordings with the Berlin Philharmonic, Tennstedt proved that his Mahler was no accident. Indeed, so strong, so central, and so overwhelmingly compelling are his Wagner recordings that his Mahler recordings seem almost accidental. In the disc of excerpts from the Ring operas, Tennstedt is at once immensely dramatic, ecstatically lyrical, and profoundly musical. In the disc of preludes and overtures from Tannhäuser, Rienzi, Lohengrin, and Meistersinger, Tennstedt is at once intensely concentrated, widely expansive, and deeply human. Aided by the super-virtuoso playing of the Berlin Philharmonic and the stupendous impact of EMI's early digital, Tennstedt's Wagner was as fine or finer than any of his contemporaries and nearly in the same league as his predecessors.