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     Wagner: DIE MEISTERSINGER VON NÜRNBERG    Table of Contents      Wagner: DIE WALKÜRE   [Includes RealAudio Selections]

The Mapleson Cylinders - Program Notes

- Libretti
- Wagner: DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN


Wagner: DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN

Although Die Walkure had been performed in New York prior to the opening of the Metropolitan Opera House in 1883, it fell to the resident German company to extend America's acquaintance with the remaining three operas of the Ring cycle. Siegfried and Götterdämmerung were introduced in the 1887-88 season, and Das Rheingold in 1888-89, which also saw the first complete cycles--two that year and one the next. Not until 1898-99 did New York again hear the full Ring, when Franz Schalk conducted what were billed as the first uncut cycles in America--three of them; the following year's two--also uncut--were in the hands of Emil Paur.

As is occasionally confirmed by the cylinders, in Mapleson's recording years the Ring was not uncut. During the second of the two cycles Walter Damrosch led in 1900-01 (a matinee cycle with Jean De Reszke as Siegfried), Mapleson recorded parts of Siegfried (passages from both Götterdämmerungs that season were evidently among the cylinders now lost). Damrosch also led the single cycle in 1901-02, from which the cylinder of the last pages of Die Walküre with Anton Van Rooy may stem. The following season, Alfred Hertz took over the Ring, and two cycles were presented; the Mapleson collection includes excerpts from all the operas except Das Rheingold in the first cycle (January 16, 19, 23), and from Die Walküre and Götterdämmerung in the second (February 21, 28).


     Wagner: DIE MEISTERSINGER VON NÜRNBERG    Table of Contents      Wagner: DIE WALKÜRE   [Includes RealAudio Selections]