[Met Performance] CID:127330

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
Metropolitan Opera House, Sat, December 23, 1939

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (224)
Richard Wagner | Richard Wagner
Hans Sachs
Herbert Janssen

Irene Jessner

Walther von Stolzing
Charles Kullman

Karin Branzell

Karl Laufkötter

Walter Olitzki

Norman Cordon

Julius Huehn

Max Altglass

Louis D'Angelo

Nicholas Massue

Lodovico Oliviero

Giordano Paltrinieri

James Wolfe [Last performance]

John Gurney

Night Watchman/Ortel
George Cehanovsky

Erich Leinsdorf

Review 1:

Review signed R. L. in the Herald Tribune

"Meistersinger" Is Given Again At Metropolitan

Irene Jessner and Kullman in Major Roles; Cordon Sings His First Pogner

"Die Meistersinger von Nurenberg" of Richard Wagner received its third performance of the season at the Metropolitan Opera House last night with a largely familiar cast. Irene Jessner and Charles Kullman repeated their Eva and Walther von Stolzing; Karin Branzell was the Magdalene, and Walter Olitzki reappeared as Beckmesser.

Herbert Janssen, singing his second Hans Sachs at the Metropolitan, chose once more to emphasize the lyric elements in Sachs's character rather than the robust. After two somewhat uneven acts, he finally accomplished much that was praiseworthy in the scene of Sachs's workshop. The "Wahn, Wahn," except for a momentary slip, went expressively, and Mr. Janssen achieved some really beautiful singing in his advice to Walther, "Mein Freund, in holder Jugendzeit." On the whole, however, his interpretation is still not conclusively drawn and needs more fundamental strength for a complete realization of the character.

One of the more rewarding aspects of a frequently dull performance was the assumption of the role of Pogner for the first time by Norman Cordon. Creating a dignified figure, he sang the first-act monologue so well that one sincerely regretted the loss of the " Das wir in Deutsche Reich" section, which Erich Leinsdorf has seen fit to cut. Not since the departure of Ivar Andressen from the Metropolitan has the music of Pogner been projected here with such consistent tonal steadiness; and the climatic "F" of the monologue was gratifyingly taken by Mr. Cordon - not evaded. Last night, it seemed that the young basso had not yet worked out his second act in a way to equal what had gone before. But, barring minor considerations, here was a Pogner of distinction.

Credit must also be given to Karl Laufkötter who, as David, showed signs of vocal improvement in a role which he has long since mastered dramatically. Mr. Leinsdorf conducted and, with his hasty tempi during the riot scene, precipitated a second and unscheduled riot among the chorus.

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