WAGNER: Tristan und Isolde (complete opera) Newly translated libretto, program notes, and synopsis. Link to audio tracks.
Helge Brilioth, Catarina Ligendza, Yvonne Minton, Kurt Moll, et al.: vocal soloists
Bayreuth Festival Orchestra & Chorus
Carlos Kleiber: conductor
A magnificent performance of Wagner’s seminal masterpiece, at mid-price. Notable above all for the fiery conducting of Carlos Kleiber, which helps create a reading of unsurpassable power and intensity. Soprano Catarina Ligendza gives a reading of accuracy, stamina, and impulsive drama. Helge Brilioth was one of the best Wagner tenors of recent years, although his career was disappointingly short. His Tristan is one of the best. Kurt Moll and Yvonne Minton are both superb as King Marke and Brangäne. Sir Donald McIntyre, who sings Kurwenal, has enjoyed an international career first in London, then at Wagner’s own theater in Bayreuth. His Met debut took place in 1975 in a Wagner role, and over the next twenty-one years he appeared there in 120 performances, exclusively in the German and Slavic repertoires. Live performance, Bayreuth, July 27, 1974.
Ilustration © Rafal Olbinski,
Courtesy of Patinae Inc.
“This performance is truly stunning: it delivers the most powerful first act I’ve ever heard, with Isolde’s rage absolutely terrifying–and the rest of the opera is up to the same level of dramatic truth.” — ClassicsToday
“Kleiber leads the orchestra through the score with great passion … however, the highlight of this performance is the cast … Essential for Kleiber fans and indispensable for everyone else!” — Fanfare