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Weber: Der Freischütz / Kleiber, Janowitz, Mathis, Schreier

Album Summary

>Weber, Carl Maria von : Der Freischütz, opera, J. 277 (Op. 77)
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"The DG set marked Carlos Kleiber's first major recording venture and this fine, incisive account of Weber's atmospheric and adventurous score fulfilled all expectations." -Penguin Guide"Kleiber's preparation of his thoroughbred Dresden ensemble and the precision of its execution is impressive." -Metropolitan Opera Guide

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
Carlos Kleiber's fine set of Der Freischütz earns reissue on CD for a number of reasons. One is the excellence of the actual recorded sound with a score that profits greatly from such attention.

Weber's famous attention to details of orchestration is lovingly explored by a conductor who has taken the trouble to go back to the score in manuscript and observe the differences between that and most of the published versions. So not only do we hear the eerie sound of low flute thirds and the subtle contrast of unmuted viola with fourpart muted violins in Agathe's 'Leise, leise', among much else, with a new freshness and point, but all the diabolical effects in the Wolf's Glen come up with a greater sense of depth, down to the grisliest detail. The beginning of the Overture, and the opening of the Wolf's Glen scene, steal upon us out of a primeval silence, as they should. All this would be of little point were the performance itself not of such interest. There's a good deal to argue about but this is because the performance is so interesting. Even if some of Kleiber's tempos are possibly unwise, they spring from a careful, thoughtful and musical mind.

The singing cast is excellent, with Gundula Janowitz an outstanding Agathe to a somewhat reflective Max from Peter Schreier, at his best when the hero is brought low by the devilish machinations; Edith Mathis is a pretty Aennchen, Theo Adam a fine, murky Caspar. The dialogue, spoken by actors, is slightly abbreviated and occasionally amended. Kleiber's reading produces much new insight to a magical old score.


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Works Details

>Weber, Carl Maria von : Der Freischütz, opera, J. 277 (Op. 77)
  • Performers: Theo Adam (Bass); Franz Crass (Bass); Renate Hoff (Soprano); Gundula Janowitz (Voice); Renate Krahmer (Soprano); Günther Leib (Baritone); Edith Mathis (Soprano); Brigitte Pfretzschner (Alto); Peter Schreier (Voice); Ingeborg Springer (Mezzo Soprano); Siegfried Vogel (Bass); Bernd Weikl (Baritone)
  • Conductor: Carlos Kleiber
  • Ensemble: Dresden Staatskapelle
  • Running Time: 9 min. 48 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1817-1821