Gustav Neidlinger

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Gustav Neidlinger (21 March 1910 – 26 December 1991) was a German bass-baritone most famous as the pre-eminent leading performer of Wagner's "howling-and-spitting" villains, especially Alberich and Klingsor, from the early 1950s to the early 1970s. Born in Mainz, Neidlinger studied at the Frankfurt conservatory, where he was trained by Otto Rottsieper. He debuted in 1931 at the Stadttheater in Mainz, where he sang until 1934. In 1934 and 1935, he performed at the Stadttheater in Plauen, Sachsen. From 1935 to 1950, he was a member of the Hamburg opera, where In 1937 he took part in the world premiere of the opera Schwarzer Peter by Norbert Schultze. In 1950, he joined the Stuttgart Staatsoper, where he became very popular and was, in 1977, named an honorary member. In Stuttgart, he sang in Igor Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress. In 1956 he moved to the Vienna Staatsoper, where he had sung as early as 1941. He also sang at the Paris Opéra (1953–67) and at Covent Garden in London in tandem with the Stuttgart ensemble (1955, 1963 (Telramund), and 1965 (Alberich)).[1] He was honored with the title German Kammersänger in 1952.

Neidlinger's vocal abilities were marked by an imposing richness of sound, dark timbre and cannonball density as well as a gift for powerful, dramatic delivery, bringing him success as a major Wagner interpreter. His portrayal of the villainous Alberich in Der Ring des Nibelungen was celebrated worldwide, and still is, through Sir Georg Solti's famous DECCA studio recording (1958–64), and Karl Böhm's 1967 recorded performance from Bayreuth, both of which have been mainstay recordings since first issued on vinyl. He sang at the Bayreuth Festival from 1952 to 1975, mainly Alberich, but also Klingsor from Parsifal, Kurwenal from Tristan und Isolde, Fritz Kothner from Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, and occasionally Hans Sachs and Friedrich von Telramund. He sang Alberich at New York's Metropolitan Opera in 1972. In addition to his triumphs in Wagner, he also had great success in buffo roles. He died in Bad Ems.

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  1. ^ Karl-Josef Kutsch and Leo Riemens: Großes Sängerlexikon. 3. Auflage. Verlag K.G. Saur, München 1999

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