[Met Performance] CID:112980
Die Walküre {264}
Ring Cycle [54} Uncut
. Matinee Broadcast ed. Metropolitan Opera House: 02/2/1933., Broadcast

(Broadcast (Partial)
Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
February 2, 1933 Matinee Broadcast


DIE WALKÜRE {264}
Der Ring des Nibelungen: Cycle [54] Uncut

Brünnhilde..............Frida Leider
Siegmund................Lauritz Melchior
Sieglinde...............Grete Stückgold
Wotan...................Friedrich Schorr
Fricka..................Maria Olszewska
Hunding.................Siegfried Tappolet
Gerhilde................Phradie Wells
Grimgerde...............Philine Falco
Helmwige................Dorothee Manski
Ortlinde................Margaret Halstead
Rossweisse..............Ina Bourskaya
Schwertleite............Faina Petrova
Siegrune................Elda Vettori
Waltraute...............Doris Doe

Conductor...............Artur Bodanzky

[Beginning in the middle of Act II, part of Die Walküre was broadcast.]

Review of W. J. Henderson in the Sun

'Die Walküre' at Metropolitan

Mmes. Leider, Stuckgold, and Olszewska and Messers. Schorr and Melchior Sing Roles.

The series of performances of the dramas of "Der Ring des Nibelungen" reached "Die Walküre" at the Metropolitan Opera House yesterday afternoon. The unfolding of the tale was followed with keen attention by an audience of impressive size. "Die Walküre" is customarily called the most popular of the chapters of the "Ring," but possibly the most potent element in its attraction is not always discerned. It is the most touching of the four dramas. "Das Rheingold" is confessedly a preface, and its purpose is to establish the first cause of the tragedy, which was Wotan's transgression of the moral law.

"Siegfried" is the drama of youth and adventure, joy and consummation. "Götterdämmerung" is that of stern justice, retribution and finality. But "Die Walküre" combines the forces of elemental human passion, overmastering womanly sympathy and parental love. It searches the heart and, when interpreted with affection and with competence, as it was yesterday, it loosens the fountains of emotion. The performance was of exceptional worth. It had its shortcomings, but its spirit and balance of its component parts were so good that it published eloquently the thought of Wagner.

The sustained high level of the representation was reached through the general merit of the cast and the temperamental conducting of Mr. Bodanzky. He has often been reproached for a cool and dispassionate attitude toward the Wagner scores, but no want of enthusiasm could be found yesterday. He gave full value to the splendors of the marvelous pages, and the singers on the stage immersed themselves in the drama with devotion and sensibility, producing noteworthy results. Every role was well assumed and some had acting and singing of an order quite up to the best traditions of the Metropolitan.

Mme. Leider, not in the best of voice and manifestly tired before the end, nevertheless presented a Brünnhilde of conquering loveliness. The interpretation conceived with rich intelligence, attained its highest point in the annunciation of death. The scene was sung with beautiful repose and a perfectly suitable quality of tone. It has become the fashion to applaud the Valkyr's outcry at the beginning of the second act. It is a bad fashion and especially to be deprecated when the cry is not wholly victorious. Mme. Leider was overcome by dizziness for a few moments in the third act. Mme. Manski, who was in the wings, prepared for an emergency, took up the singing of the part for a few phrases. Mme. Leider quickly recovered, however, continued her role. Few in the audience noticed the incident.

Mme. Stuckgold's Sieglinde has grown since it was first made known here, and is now a tender, moving and vocally beautiful achievement. The soprano's voice is peculiarly fitted to the music, possessing, as it does, a singularly girlish character, coupled with a supple adaptation to shades of feeling.

There is a genuinely noble Fricka in Mme. Olszewska. The role is brief but very important and extremely difficult. It is much easier to make Fricka a mere shrew than an outraged goddess. Wagner's divinity is not much more than an angry woman till she delivers that supernaturally regal passage" "Deiner ewigen Gattin heilige Ehre schirme heut ihr Schild." Mme. Olszewska's impersonation swept on grand lines directly up to that majestic utterance. She placed before the eye a figure of grand dignity and plastic pose. Her Fricka will be listed with the great ones who have adorned the local stage.

Mr. Schorr's Wotan was a fit companion for the women of the story. It was broadly planned and executed, and the famous farewell was made a deeply felt climax to a strongly drawn delineation. Mr. Melchior's Siegmund was no stranger to New York, and yesterday it showed improvement over its acknowledged excellence of former seasons. Mr. Tappolet was a commendable Hunding and there was a capable choir of Valkyrs, composed of singers usually entrusted with solo parts. The mounting of the drama could be improved in these days of advanced devices in stage illusion, but the opera house cannot be expected to embark on costly enterprises just now. When it can give such a performance of "Die Walküre" as it gave yesterday afternoon, it is entitled to gratitude.



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