[Met Performance] CID:167810
Tannhäuser {376} Matinee Broadcast ed. Metropolitan Opera House: 01/29/1955., Broadcast

(Broadcast
Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
January 29, 1955 Matinee Broadcast


TANNHÄUSER {376}

Tannhäuser..............Ramon Vinay
Elisabeth...............Astrid Varnay
Wolfram.................George London
Venus...................Blanche Thebom
Hermann.................Jerome Hines
Walther.................Giulio Gari
Heinrich................Paul Franke
Biterolf................Clifford Harvuot
Reinmar.................Norman Scott
Shepherd................Heidi Krall

Conductor...............Rudolf Kempe

Review signed R. A. E. in Musical America

The Saturday afternoon broadcast of Wagner's opera was its second performance of the season, with recasting in the two leading feminine roles. Astrid Varnay, the Venus of the first performance, sang Elisabeth, and Blanche Thebom sang Venus. Miss Varnay has sounded better on other occasions, but there was no flaw in her interpretation. Her "Dich, theure Halle" was ecstatically joyful, her defense of Tannhäuser dramatically passionate, her final prayer inwardly dedicated and serene. In the face of such a heartfelt, communicative and understanding singing, the quality of Miss Varnay's voice became an academic matter. Miss Thebom's Venus was properly seductive in manner, but somewhat strained vocally except in softer passages, where she achieved lovely tones. Rudolf Kempe's conducting was assured and musicianly, keeping the opera moving along in a manner that understated its effects - refreshingly so. Ramon Vinay (Tannhäuser), George London (Wolfram), and Jerome Hines (the Landgrave) headed the male contingent of the cast.



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