Strauss, R: Der Rosenkavalier
Brigitte Fassbaender (Octavian), Claire Watson (Marschallin), Karl Ridderbusch (Ochs), Lucia Popp (Sophie), Benno Kusche (Faninal), Annelie Waas (Marianne), David Thaw (Valzacchi), Margarethe Bence (Annina) & Gerhard Unger (Italian singer)
Bavarian State Opera, Carlos Kleiber
Carlos Kleiber conducted Der Rosenkavalier in the most famous opera houses all over the world, but nowhere as much as at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich. These performances justifiably remain in the audiences' memory, as proven by this recording of a 1973 festival performance. A year after the première of this Munich production, the performances had become that of a perfect ensemble: the different vocal characteristics of the various singing personalities also inspired Kleiber to bring to light other details of the score: the blackness and the seriousness of the bass Karl Ridderbusch as Baron Ochs is made all the more intense by the almost threatening quality of the orchestra, and even more refreshing by the purposefully performed comic punchlines; the wise melancholy of the Marschallin is celebrated by Claire Watson and Carlos Kleiber with equally shadowed quality and accentuation; the vocal freshness and natural impetuosity of Lucia Popp as Sophie and Brigitte Fassbaender in the title-role match Carlos Kleiber's direction in its unrestrained vigour.