, September 2012
This is a fascinating Siegfried, that, while certainly not lacking in power, volume, or intensity, manages to come across as an almost chamber-like performance. The back and forth between Siegfried and Mime in the first act is sassy and natural…The text is always audible and diction is superb; so is the voice/orchestral balance.
The scene changes are handled with true craft…
…the…Wanderer/Alberich duet is a gem: the former calm, the latter manic and desperate. It’s very exciting storytelling.
I suspect this bright “tinta” is due not only to conductor Sebastian Weigle’s leadership and the surprisingly brilliant playing by the Frankfurt forces, whose brass is shiny and whose strings shimmer, but also to two other factors: the spotless recording, in which the harps and triangle can be heard even when up against the full complement of strings and winds, and to the casting. In Lance Ryan, the Siegfried, we have a true tenor…Ryan has no problem with high notes—he even articulates, right on the note…his Forging Song is absolutely joyful…He’s the finest Siegfried I’ve heard in years…
Also helping this shiny “tinta” is the Wanderer of Terje Stensvold, a pure Heldenbariton whose low notes are always there but without the woolly darkness of Hotter. I’d never heard him before and assumed he was new to the opera world; in fact, he is 68 years old and has been singing for decades, with no deterioration of the voice’s core. It is a wonderful performance.
…Weigle’s leadership is paramount. He has no fear of pulling out all the stops, but he never drowns out the singers…this “modern” set is a keeper. © 2012 ClassicsToday.com