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Wagner - Die Feen [Box set]

Richard Wagner Audio CD
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: £11.88 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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The German composer Richard Wagner was born on 22nd May 1813 in Leipzig and was raised by his mother and step-father in Dresden. His step-father, Ludwig Geyer, was an actor and playwright and Wagner's first forays into the creative world were on the stage. Whilst still at school, Wagner wrote the tragic play Leubald which he decided to set to music.

Aged 14 and living in Leipzig, ... Read more in Amazon's Richard Wagner Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Wagner - Die Feen + Das Liebesverbot (Wien, 1962)
Price For Both: £23.10

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Teatro Comunale di Cagliari Orchestra
  • Conductor: Gabor Ötvös
  • Composer: Richard Wagner
  • Audio CD (11 Aug 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Documents
  • ASIN: B000HWXSK0
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 222,306 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Wagner's Die Feen: Discography 10 May 2014
Format:Audio CD
"Die Feen" ("The Fairies") was the twenty year old Wagner's first opera, (1833).
First performed in 1888, five years after Wagner's death.

Wagner Completists need at least one recording of it.
It has been recorded four times - all are on CD.
Not yet available on DVD or Blu-Ray.

"Complete" recordings of "Die Feen", in ascending order of completeness:

2 hours, 46 minutes = Wolfgang Sawallisch, Munich Opera, 1983: Feen-Comp Opera

2 hours, 53 minutes = Sebastian Weigle, Frankfurt Opera, 2011: Die Feen

3 hours, 1 minute = Gabor Otvos, Cagliari Opera, 1998: The recording under review. *

3 hours, 20 minutes = Edward Downes, BBC, 1976: Wagner: Complete Operas (Limited Edition)

Since "Die Feen" is such a rarity, I can only recommend a performance that is both complete and comes with a libretto and English translation.
That makes it easy.
Curiously enough, the oldest recording (1976) is the only one to meet these minimum requirements.

Edward Downes with the BBC is, therefore, my first choice for "Die Feen".
Fortunately its a spirited performance in nice stereo sound.

It was released in 2005 as a 3 CD set on the Italian label Ponto (no libretto or translation), in violation of BBC copyright - since withdrawn.
Luckily, DG picked it up for inclusion in their 13 Opera, 43 CD Box:
... Read more ›
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Amazon.com: 3.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wagner's First Opera 21 April 2014
By Jorge - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Completed in 1833 when he was just 20 years old, Wagner called Die Feen a "Grosse romantische Oper" (a grand romantic opera). As such the influence of Marschner, Carl Maria von Weber and the Italian operas can be detected. Alan Blyth, Gramophone's regular Wagner reviewer states "...that, by avoiding the aping of Italian opera in Das Liebesverbot and of grand opera in Rienzi, the result was an opera more stylistically unified than its successors. The later works may contain individual passages that are more 'advanced' than anything in the youthful imitative ways of Die Feen, but as entities they are less satisfying". In The New York Times, critic John Rockwell acknowledges the presence of passages imitative of Weber and Marschner but, says that there are "wonderfully original passages too...Some of the instrumental writing is exquisite. And especially in the final two acts, there are ensembles and scenes of undeniable strength of personality. This is not some quaint antiquarian resurrection, but an opera that can work for today's audiences on stage." As there are less than a half dozen aural recordings and no video recordings of Die Feen this does not permit many in depth evaluations of this early work. This particular recording should be compared to that of Sawallisch in order to achieve some understanding of Wagner's early operatic compositional efforts.
3.0 out of 5 stars Wagner's Die Feen: Discography 10 May 2014
By John Fowler - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
"Die Feen" ("The Fairies") was the twenty year old Wagner's first opera, (1833).
First performed in 1888, five years after Wagner's death.

Wagner Completists need at least one recording of it.
It has been recorded four times - all are on CD.
Not yet available on DVD or Blu-Ray.

"Complete" recordings of "Die Feen", in ascending order of completeness:

2 hours, 46 minutes = Wolfgang Sawallisch, Munich Opera, 1983: Feen-Comp Opera

2 hours, 53 minutes = Sebastian Weigle, Frankfurt Opera, 2011: Die Feen

3 hours, 1 minute = Gabor Otvos, Cagliari Opera, 1998: The recording under review. *

3 hours, 20 minutes = Edward Downes, BBC, 1976: Wagner: Complete Operas (Limited Edition)

Since "Die Feen" is such a rarity, I can only recommend a performance that is both complete and comes with a libretto and English translation.
That makes it easy.
Curiously enough, the oldest recording (1976) is the only one to meet these minimum requirements.

Edward Downes with the BBC is, therefore, my first choice for "Die Feen".
Fortunately its a spirited performance in nice stereo sound.

It was released in 2005 as a 3 CD set on the Italian label Ponto (no libretto or translation), in violation of BBC copyright - since withdrawn.
Luckily, DG picked it up for inclusion in their 13 Opera, 43 CD Box: Wagner: Complete Operas (Limited Edition)
The booklet includes a link to the website where librettos and translations can be downloaded (clumsy but unavoidable in a bargain box like this).

DG also licensed the Downes/BBC recording of Wagner's second opera "Das Liebesverbot" for their Big Wagner Box.
The best available performances of Wagner's first three operas, on nine CDs with complete librettos, for only $75 would be a bargain all by itself.
Think of the remaining ten operas as a bonus.

P.S. I have also prepared discographies of Wagner: Das Liebesverbot - and - Wagner: Rienzi

* The original, pricier release of the Otvos recording on the Dynamic label: Wagner - Die Feen included the text and translation.
Still 19 minutes shorter than Downes in the DG box.
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