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"On wings of song" - Heine's words and Mendelssohn's immortal melody, sung here by the inimitable Rita Streich, perfectly encapsulate the spirit of this collection. Six of the greatest voices of the last half-century perform a range of familiar music: romantic Wagner from Gré Brouwenstijn and collectors' items such as Egk's four Italian songs from the matchless Irmgard Seefried. These were the commanding voices of their day, from Christa Ludwig's warm mezzo, to Gundula Janowitz's crystalline soprano and the dramatic brilliance of Galina Vishnevskaya, all captured in their prime.
“With Vishnevskaya the odd-Russian-out, these 1960s films preserve the art of female singers mostly in the German Lied repertoire. Visual and sonic quality is variable, platform manners quaint, but the vocalism regularly excellent.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.