Notes & Reviews:
"Of the work's three "official" recordings, the first one still boasts the most cohesive ensemble work, supplest conducting, and a level of singing that you'll be hard pressed to find elsewhere. Even if you already own EMI's 1987 transfer of this classic recording, do consider this sonic upgrade, for it sounds much better. Tape hiss is reduced, yet the voices and instruments sport more dimension, color, and amplitude. What delicious, blue-blooded siblings Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Eberhard Wächter make, while Nicolai Gedda's yummy Flamand and the volatile Olivier of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau add vivid fuel to the music's gentle fires. Clarion, the actress, reveals the 30-something Christa Ludwig in her element. Best of all, however, is Hans Hotter. His portrayal of the oafish theater director La Roche offers a thousand lessons in what a singing actor is all about, just like his better-known Wotan. The smaller roles are also cast with distinction, and the Philharmonia Orchestra soars under Sawallisch's lithe, eloquent leadership. Who cares if it's mono? If you love late Strauss, life isn't complete until you add this set to your collection." -Classics Today
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