Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Sound and Führer

The Berlin Deutsche Oper opened on November 12, 1912 with a performance of Beethoven's Fidelio. By 1933, the Nazis were in power and Dr. Josef Goebbels, Minister of Culture and Propaganda renamed this institution the Deutsches Opernhaus. This ten-minute B&W film segment shows Goebbels introducing the audience to a performance of Richard Wagner's Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. The opera house was destroyed in World War II.

I understand that this clip comes from the documentary "Great Conductors of the Third Reich: Art in the Service of Evil," and although I know very few details of the performance, I do know that Hans Sachs is sung by bass baritone Wilhelm Rode, and that conductor Karl Böhm leads the orchestra. If anyone knows more details concerning this performance, feel free to leave a comment on this blog.

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