Wagner: Die Walküre

Les APB (Belgium)

This recording of Walküre comes as a testimony of the complete Ring Cycle staged in Adelaide, Australia in 2004.

It deserves a special place on the top shelf of your CD library.

Right from the beginning the orchestra sound is sumptuous, under the passionate direction of the Israeli conductor Asher Fisch – a sort of World Wandering Wagnerian – who works mainly in Vienna in order to perform works which are banned in Israel.

One must underline that the cast consists mostly of local artists. It deserves a special accolade for its global level of excellence. It would make us believe in the return of great Wagnerian Voices!The first act sets the pace with a Deborah Riedel / Sieglinde in super vocal form and her heldentenor Twin, Stuart Skelton / Siegmund, who - as a follower of the great anglo-saxon tradition established since Lauritz Melchior – holds its cry of despair ad libitum for 26 seconds! Such heroism is a must when confronted with Richard Green / Hunding’s cavernous and ferocious bass.

Compared with this super hero world, the gods appear more trivial ... If Elizabeth Campbell’s Fricka sounds a bit shrewish, Lisa Gasteen’s Brünnhilde turns up to be a fierce warrior when it comes to saving the condemned couple.

The best asset of the recording is the SACD technique that magnifies the sound, giving it relief and depth. You have never heard in your life such a 'Ride of the Valkyries', prancing, jumping, neighing, calling and thundering forth ...