Composer(s):
Genre(s):
Opera
Period(s):
Romantic
Label:
Orfeo
Catalogue No:
C787102I
Barcode:
4011790787220
Release Date:
03/2017
Available Format(s):
CD

Die lustigen Weiber von Windsor

Hans Knappertsbusch conducted a far broader spectrum of repertoire – at least in Munich – than his unique reputation for Bruckner, Wagner and Strauss might let us suppose. Knappertsbusch even left his mark on the Romantic comic opera The Merry Wives of Windsor by Otto Nicolai (after Shakespeare). He conducted it at the Prinzregententheater, which became the legendary, temporary home of the Bavarian State Opera in the years after World War Two. The stark contrasts between the tender lyricism of the score and its earthy, humorous elements are savoured to the full by Knappertsbusch and the Orchestra of the Bavarian State Opera. Nicolai was born two hundred years ago on 9 June 1810. His different stylistic models all come to the fore here – such as Mendelssohn (whose teacher Zelter also taught Nicolai) and the Italian operas that Nicolai was able to get to know when he worked as an organist in Rome. At the Bavarian State Opera in 1957, the year when Knappertsbusch conducted the opening night of this production, the Merry Wives were above all an example of great ensemble theatre. The most prominent casting was of Mr and Mrs “Fluth” (in Shakespeare the “Fords”), namely Annelies Kupper – Munich’s favourite lyrical soprano of the day, singing roles from Mozart’s Countess via Verdi’s Desdemona to Wagner’s Elsa – and Karl Schmitt-Walter, perhaps the most versatile baritone of his generation, of stage and concert hall alike. Falstaff was sung by Max Proebstl, a perfect example of a singer whose commitment to a single ensemble shows up the pros and cons of today’s industry of the travelling stars. For a basso profondo such as he, possessing the characterizational abilities of a singer in the buffo genre, would enrich the everyday repertoire of any opera house. The second married pair on stage, sung by Lilian Benningsen and Kieth Engen, also offers proof of the virtues of a permanent ensemble, for their characterization of members of the old English bourgeoisie have profited from their experience of singing roles such as Princess Eboli or King Heinrich. As rivals for the hand of Anna (charmingly sung by Liselotte Fölser after the manner of Pamina) we find two brilliant tenors in the shape of Richard Holm (Fenton) and Paul Kuën (Junker Spärlich). And just like them both, the chorus of the Bavarian State Opera also guarantees what are the most important ingredients in a piece such as this (even without the accompanying visuals), namely a delight in humour and playfulness throughout.


Die lustigen Weiber von Windsor
1.     Overture
07:39
2.     Act I: Duet: Nein, das ist wirklich doch zu keck! (Frau Fluth, Frau Reich)
06:28
3.     Act I: Was werden wir beginnen? (Frau Fluth, Frau Reich)
02:16
4.     Act I: Dialogue
01:21
5.     Act I: Recitative: So geht indes hinein (Herr Reich, Sparlich, Cajus, Fenton)
02:02
6.     Act I: Recitative: Wenn eure Seele je empfunden (Herr Reich, Sparlich, Cajus, Fenton)
02:30
7.     Act I: Recitative: Bin ich erhort? (Herr Reich, Sparlich, Cajus, Fenton)
01:58
8.     Act I: Recitative and Aria: Nun eilt herbei, Witz, heitre Laune (Frau Fluth)
04:19
9.     Act I: Recitative and Aria: Frohsinn und Laune wurzen das Leben (Frau Fluth)
02:58
10.     Act I: Finale: So hab' ich dich errungen (All)
05:24
11.     Act I: Finale: Seht, da steht ein Korb (All)
01:53
12.     Act I: Finale: Herein! herein! So hab' ich dich errungen (All)
03:40
13.     Act I: Finale: Da sind die Jager wieder (All)
04:25
14.     Act II: Finale: Verzeiht, mein liebes Weibchen (All)
02:17
15.     Act II: Dialogue
04:37
16.     Act II: Als Bublein klein (Falstaff, Burgerm Kellner, Chorus)
06:29
17.     Act II: Gott gruss Euch, Sir! (Falstaff, Burgerm Kellner, Chorus)
05:36
18.     Act II: Recitative: In einem Waschkorb? (Herr Fluth, Falstaff)
06:17

Disc 2

1.     Act II: Dies ist die Stunde, wo sie oft (Sparlich, Cajus, Fenton)
03:29
2.     Act II: Romance: Horch, die Lerche singt im Hain! (Fenton)
02:32
3.     Act II: Duet: Fenton! (Anna, Fenton)
06:02
4.     Act II: Quartet: Besturmen denn die last' gen Freier (Fenton, Anna, Sparlich, Cajus)
03:22
5.     Act II: Dialogue
01:31
6.     Act II: Duet: So! jetzt hatt' ich ihn gefangen! (Herr Fluth, Frau Fluth)
07:14
7.     Act II: Finale: Wer klopft? - Macht auf, Herr Fluth! (Herr Fluth, Sparlich, Cajus, Herr Reich, Frau Fluth, Frau Reich, Falstaff)
01:58
8.     Act II: Finale: Stutz Euch, Mutter Klatsch, auf mich (Herr Fluth, Sparlich, Cajus, Herr Reich, Frau Fluth, Frau Reich, Falstaff)
02:04
9.     Act II: Finale: Schorft die Augen! (Herr Fluth, Sparlich, Cajus, Herr Reich, Frau Fluth, Frau Reich, Falstaff)
01:37
10.     Act III: Dialogue
03:59
11.     Act III: O susser Mond! (Anna, Chorus)
03:21
12.     Act III: Trio: Die Glocke schlug schon Mitternacht (Falstaff, Frau Fluth, Frau Reich)
05:54
13.     Act III: Ihr Elfenm weiss und rot und grau (Anna, Fenton, Herr Reich, Chorus)
05:49
14.     Act III: Du schweigst? (Anna, Fenton, Herr Reich, Chorus)
01:57
15.     Act III: Mucken, Wespen, Fliegenchor (Herr Reich, Falstaff, Cajus, Sparlich, Chorus)
02:15
16.     Act III: Er gesteht noch immer nicht (All)
04:12
17.     Act III: Trio - Finale: So hat denn der Schwank der frohlichen Nacht (Frau Fluth, Anna, Frau Reich, Falstaff, Chorus)
02:44

Total Playing Time: 02:12:09