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Die Fledermaus

Johann Strauss II Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: £14.99
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Product details

  • Composer: Johann Strauss II
  • Audio CD (6 Sep 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Emi Classics
  • ASIN: B000026CJ6
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 261,812 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Overture
2. Taubchen, das entflattert ist
3. Hahahaha!
4. Dialog: Ich muss mir fur heute abend Ausgang erschwindeln!
5. Ach, Ich Darf Nicht Hin Zu Dir!
6. Dialog: Wie glucklich die alte Tante ist
7. Nein, Mit Solchen Advokaten
8. Beruh'ge endlich diese Wut
9. Rekurrieren, appellieren
10. Dialog: Also, noch verscharft die Strafe?
See all 17 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Ein Souper Heut' Uns Winkt
2. Dialog: Amusement! Amusement!
3. Ich lade gern mir Gaste ein
4. Dialog: Das sind allerdings nationale Eigentumlichkeiten
5. Ach, Meine Herren Und Damen
6. Mein Herr Marquins, ein Mann wie Sie
7. Dialog: Na, Herr Marquis
8. Wie fliechen schnell die Stunden fort
9. Dialog: Es ist also wirklich wahr
10. Dieser Anstand, So Manierlich
See all 26 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Amazon.co.uk Review

Viennese operetta is a fearful genre to get right. It demands great (often coloratura) voices which can still sparkle with improvisatory freshness, and the whole project has to sound like it was thrown together that afternoon on a whim. It has to fizz like the champagne that so often plays a part in the plot. For the most part, this recording possesses all the right ingredients and mixes them with superb skill. Karajan directs the proceedings with light-hearted precision, and keeps the pace crackling with comic energy. Rita Streich is a fantastic Adele and makes the most of this soubrettish soufflé of a role with a host of silvery voiced coloratura pyrotechnics. She is also an excellent foil to the richer voiced Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, who throws herself into the spirit of things with equal energy. The cons are the laboured German dialogue, given in full, and the casting of a man to sing the mezzo drag role of Orlofsky: but these aside, this account is pure Veuve Cliquot. --Warwick Thompson

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Come with me to a supper. 7 July 2002
By John Austin HALL OF FAME TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
"Come with me to a supper."
So sings Dr Falke to his crony Eisenstein.
And what a supper it turns out to be! Besides the champagne, the dancing and the food provided at the villa of the world-weary young Prince Orlovsky, we see Eisenstein flirting with a masked "Hungarian lady" (Eisenstein's wife in disguise), Eisenstein's maid Adele (in a ball dress filched from her mistress's wardrobe) pretending to be an actress, and Dr Falke arranging a "pay back" for Eistenstein who had recently concocted a joke by which Dr Falke had been made to sneak home, after a fancy dress ball, through the city streets dressed as a bat.

Listening to the music that Johann Strauss Jnr provided for this "supper", it is hard to believe that "Die Fledermaus" was taken off after only 16 performances at its premiere Vienna season. Soon after, however, it was taken up elsewhere, notably in Hamburg where it was conducted by Mahler. Nowadays, it can be seen everywhere (often in up-dated productions), and music lovers can select from umpteen recorded versions.

This one has recently gravitated to the prestigious "Great Recordings of the Century" eminence. It is one of a classic series of recordings made in the mid 1950s by the producer Walter Legge. Featuring the orchestra he created (the Philharmonia), his wife Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, and the conductor whose career he had thus far promoted (Herbert von Karajan), it still remains one of the best recommendations despite its limited monaural sound. There is verve and sparkle a-plenty, the casting is flawless, there is a strong sense of ensemble, and dialogue is included.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best 3 July 2007
Karajan's first recording is often ovelooked, but it is a wonderful thing, and once you own it you will not need any others. Schwarzkopf's Rosalinde is fine, as is Gedda's Eisenstein, but the real star of the show is Rita Streich as Adele. She gives a wonderful performance, and the det is worth buying for her alone. Kunz as Falke is fine, but Franz Boheim's extremely drunk Frosch is slightly annoying. However, a great introduction to Fledermaus, and a bargain at the price Amazon is offering.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
SOURCE:
Studio recording made in the Kingsway Hall, London February 26 to April 30, 1955.

SOUND:
Leading edge 1955 mono. The recording was highly regarded when it was issued and still remains a fine example of the old technology. The newer stereo recording techniques were available as early as 1954 but were not used for this "Fledermaus." Walter Legge (1906-1979), in one of the few truly bad decisions of a spectacular career as a producer, completely underestimated the value of stereo sound reproduction and stubbornly believed that he could ignore it.

CAST:
Gabriel von Eisenstein, a prosperous Viennese gentlemen with a roving eye - Nicolai Gedda (tenor)
Rosalinde, his wife - Elisabeth Schwarzkopf (soprano)
Alfred, Rosalinde's would be lover - Helmut Krebs (tenor)
Adele, Rosalinde's maid - Rita Streich (soprano)
Dr. Falke, Eisenstein's good friend but also the victim of one of his practical jokes - Erich Kunz (baritone)
Herr Frank, Governor of the City Prison - Karl Doench (baritone)
Prince Orlowsky, a jaded and bored visiting aristocrat - Rudolf Christ (tenor)
Dr. Blind, Eisenstein's lawyer - Erich Majkut (tenor)
Ida, Adele's sister - Luise Martini (speaker)
Frosch, a jailer - Franz Boeheim (speaker)

CONDUCTOR:
Herbert von Karajan with the Philharmonia Orchestra and Chorus.

TEXT:
The spoken dialogue has been trimmed down by Walter Legge until it provided only the minimum required plot development and connectivity. Unlike Karajan's recorded live performance of five years later, there is no interpolated "gala" of interpolated performances in Act II. Also omitted from that act is the ballet music.

COMMENTARY:
This was the third complete recording of "Die Fledermaus.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
5.0 out of 5 stars sumptuous,first rate production 20 Jan 2014
By Great Faulkner's Ghost - Published on Amazon.com
This mono recording was produced by the great EMI engineer Walter Legge, and conducted by Herbert von Karajan, and is a valued relic of the Golden Age of the LP era. Karajan brings a definite Viennese lightness into the performance, with fast tempi -- some would say too fast. The cast boasts the stellar trio of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Rita Streich and Nicolai Gedda. Unlike the Krauss version that preceded it, this studio production comes with spoken dialogue. It is a sumptuous, first rate production in every way.
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