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Mahler – Des Knaben Wunderhorn – Maureen Forrester Heinz Rehfuss – WSO Felix Prohaska

Enregistré au Konzerthaus de Vienne –  27 mai – 1er juin 1963

Il est presque inutile de présenter cet enregistrement, un des fleurons de la discographie de l’œuvre.

Il a été publié sur microsillons et sur CD, mais aussi sous forme de bande magnétique, et c’est cette édition qui est la plus convaincante.

Dans l’édition CD, l’Orchestre du Festival de Vienne a été identifié comme étant le Wiener Symphoniker (WSO).

La contralto canadienne Maureen Forrester (1930-2010) est une interprète de référence des œuvres de Mahler qu’elle a enregistrées avec des chefs aussi divers que Bruno Walter, Fritz Reiner, Ferenc Fricsay , Charles Münch, Bernard Haitink, Zubin Mehta et ici le chef autrichien Felix Prohaska (1912-1987). Elle a été, avec Kathleen Ferrier et Aafje Heynis, une des rares vrais contraltos du siècle dernier, et sur cette bande, sa voix de « bronze » est magnifiquement restituée.

Le baryton-basse allemand Heinz Rehfuss (1917-1988) a chanté un vaste répertoire de Bach à Luigi Nono. Il a enregistré des mélodies et des Lieder notamment avec le compositeur Frank Martin. Dans le domaine de l’Opéra, où il a joué plus de 80 rôles, il a notablement enregistré le Comte des « Nozze di Figaro », et Golaud de « Pelléas et Mélisande ».

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Recorded at the Vienna Konzerthaus – May, 27 – June 1st 1963

Presenting this recording is almost useless, as it is one of the highlights of the discography of this work. It has been published on LP, on CD, but also on reel-to-reel tape, which is the most convincing.

In the CD edition, the « Vienna Festival Orchestra » is identified as being the Vienna Symphony Orchestra (WSO).

The Canadian contralto Maureen Forrester (1930-2010) is a reference performer of the Mahler compositions which she recorded with very different conductors, namely Bruno Walter, Fritz Reiner, Ferenc Fricsay, Charles Münch, Bernard Haitink, Zubin Mehta and here the Austrian conductor Felix Prohaska (1912-1987). She was with Kathleen Ferrier and Aafje Heynis one of the very few true contraltos of the last century, and on this tape, her « bronze » voice is sumptuously reproduced.

The German bass-baritone Heinz Rehfuss (1917-1988) has sung a vast repertoire from Bach to Luigi Nono. He has recorded melodies and Lieder especially with composer Frank Martin. In the field of Opera, in which he played more than 80 parts, his recordings of the Count in « Nozze di Figaro », and of Golaud in « Pelléas et Mélisande » are particuliarly noteworthy.

Les liens de téléchargement sont dans le premier commentaire. The download links are in the first comment.

4 réponses sur « Mahler – Des Knaben Wunderhorn – Maureen Forrester Heinz Rehfuss – WSO Felix Prohaska »

As an almost rabid Mahler fan, thank you so much for this. If the material is available, please, more Mahler. I’m also hoping you have some open reels lined up for future offerings. When i began listening in the early 1960s, open reel, even before Dolby came in to reduce tape hiss, always seemed to give the most detailed sound and remarkable presence.

Thanks for you warm comments! Yes, I have available material with Mahler recordings.

As to open reels, I have also a good collection of them, not only from the 60s (when the tapes were 4-track) but also, from the 50s with either mono and stereo 2-trak tapes, including rare EMI/HMV tapes with Furtwängler, Fischer, Klemperer, Beecham, etc… .

Of course, the older the tape, the higher the probability of it being no longer playable. I must say I have been very lucky with the Ramin Christmas Oratorio, because the 2-track stereo tape is from 1957, and no stereo LPs of this recording were ever issued! Although showing slight signs of wear (in the upper frequencies), it is still impressive, and it is also a real rarity, because these tapes were expensive and did not sell well (a few hundred copies at the utmost), and maybe the stereo master tape no longer exists.

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