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Strauss, Richard: Elektra (DECCA The Originals) Box set

5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Performer: Birgit Nilsson, Regina Resnik, Marie Collier
  • Orchestra: Wiener Philharmoniker
  • Conductor: Georg Solti
  • Audio CD (19 Mar. 2007)
  • SPARS Code: ADD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Decca
  • ASIN: B000KLRUJS
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 20,185 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist - Artist (Sample)
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Product Description

Strauss: Elektra / Solti, Nilsson, Resnik, Collier, Krause . Release Date: 05/08/2007 . Label: Decca . Catalog #: 475 8231 . Spars Code: ADD . Composer: Richard Strauss . Performer: Marie Collier, Tom Krause, Gerhard Stolze, Regina Resnik, ... Conductor: Sir Georg Solti . Orchestra/Ensemble: Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra . Number of Discs: 2 . Recorded in: Stereo . Length: 1 Hours 48 Mins. Works on This Recording: 1. Elektra, Op. 58 by Richard Strauss Performer: Marie Collier (Soprano), Tom Krause (Baritone), Gerhard Stolze (Tenor), Regina Resnik (Mezzo Soprano), Birgit Nilsson (Soprano), Leo Heppe (Bass), Gerhard Unger (Tenor), Pauline Tinsley (Soprano), Felicia Weathers (Soprano), Yvonne Minton (Mezzo Soprano), Jane Cook (Soprano), Maureen Lehane (Alto), Helen Watts (Alto), Margarita Lilowa (Mezzo Soprano), Margarete Sjösted (Mezzo Soprano), Tugomir Franc (Bass) Conductor: Sir Georg Solti Orchestra/Ensemble: Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra Period: 20th Century Written: 1906-1908; Germany Date of Recording: 1967 Venue: Sofiensaal, Vienna Length: 107 Minutes 50 Secs. Language: German

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By Mondoro TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 12 May 2009
Format: Audio CD
This classic recording of Strauss' most harmonically-adventurous opera has become the benchmark agaianst which later versions can be measured. Decca assembled an ideal cast: for the two sisters, Nilsson, in her vocal prime as Elektra, obsessed in her quest to avenge the murder of her father Agamemnon, and the Australian soprano Marie Collier (whose career was tragically cut short) as the more vulnerable younger sister who does not share her sister's obsession and merely wishes for a normal life. But both must give way to Regina Resnik's chilling portrayal of the tormented Queen Klytemnestra, assailed by nightmares and dread images. John Culshaw's production of the scene between Elektra and her mother - which has so impressed Amazon reviewers of another issue of this Solti set - is one of the great moments in recorded opera. Once heard, never forgotten. Strauss' men play small parts as compared with their dominant womenfolk, but Tom Krause's Orest has his moment at the emotional high point of the opera, the recognition scene with Elektra, where Nilsson demonstrates her ability to sing softly. Aegith's role is even slighter, as befits his insignificance: the talented character tenor Stoltze has literally seconds to convey this insignificance.

Strauss was fortunate in his librettist Hugo von Hoffmansthal who produced a text that summons up the murky world of Sophocles' ancient Greece, and makes skilful use of irony to develop the characters and move the drama forward to the ultimate act of vengeance. The result is an engrossing experience, enriched by fine soloists and a good supporting cast with many leading singers from the 1960s and 70s, and Georg Solti and the VPO in top form.

A 'must' for any followers of modern opera, which stands next to that other dark jewel in the Decca/Solti/Culshaw crown, 'Salome'.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This famous recording of Elektra has held its place in the catalogue, since it was first issued on LP in 1967. The recording in its latest 24 bit re-mastering is sensational. There have been some great singers of the part of Electra recorded, notably Inge Borkh and Astrid Varnay, but none seem to have ever had the sheer ease and power that was possessed by Birgit Nilsson in this taxing role. It is not however just her gleaming top notes and untiring singing that make her such a great interpreter of the part. Often it is her soft singing, her heart breaking opening monologue in which she yearns for her dead father is one of the most moving accounts of this monologue. The anxiety in her scene with Orest in which she asks him not to look at her, as she is now a shadow of her former self, shows how Nilsson could scale down her voice to a delicate whisper for what must be one of the most tender and touching scenes in all opera. I also feel that this recording captures the Nilsson voice as it was in the theatre. She is supported by a brilliant cast. Regina Resnik one of the greatest Klytamnestra's is superb. Marie Collier is a very feminine Chrysothemis. She does however have a fast vibrato that may irritate some, but her voice is so different from Nilsson's that you are never in any doubt who is singing. Tom Krause is a young sounding forthright Orest. Sir Georg Solti and The Vienna Philharmonic play as if their lives depended on it. Solti's interpretation is a far more violent and dynamic reading than say Karl Bohm, but with Decca's sonicstage recording you are drawn into the intense drama that this opera is. I have a number of recordings of Elektra but if I was cast away on that mythical desert island this is the recording I would want to take with me,(but with hopefully the wonderful Inge Borkh recording smuggled in as well) though it may cause some sleepless nights !!!
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Format: Audio CD
To my meaning, this recording cannot be bettered. It captured all main singers at the absolute hight of their powers. Nilsson in unapproachable in the title role, Resnik does not fall into the trap of overacting and Marie Collier is a very sympathetic Chrysotemis. By the way she jumped in for Berit Lindholm who should have sung Elektra's sister, but cancelled as she thought she still had too little experience, having sung the role only a couple of times. The men are imposing too. Solti has every single note and bar in his hand and the playing of the Vienna Philharmonic is overwhelming. So is the sound. First choice!
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A great cast all in fine voice and an orchestra that really brings Strauss to life. Although the evident star is the astonishing Birgit Nilsson, Regina Resnik's portrayal of Klytemnestra is filled with the same passion and begs to be listened to again and again. Srauss may not be for everyone and the subject matter isn't exactly pleasant but, if you do want this musical tale of bloodthirst and revenge brought to life, this must surely be the best recording
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