Doris Schade (Narrator), Fritz Wunderlich (Tenor).
Hessen Radio Choir, Schwanheimer Children's Choir, South German Radio Choir, Stuttgart Choir of the South German Broadcast,.
Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, Hessen Radio Symphony Orchestra – Dean Dixon.
Fritz Wunderlich sings Stravinsky – a rare combination! Not only is the combination of singer and work an unusual one, but the work itself also is – and has always been – a rarely performed part of Stravinsky’s œuvre.
The part of Eumolpius – Greek for “he who sings beautifully” – in Igor Stravinsky’s Perséphone could have become Fritz Wunderlich’s “signature role” if he had sung it more than only the one time, in 1960, for the Hessische Rundfunk in Frankfurt am Main. Dean Dixon, who was the first Afro-American to become chief conductor of a German Radio Symphony Orchestra in the following year, had programmed this virtually unknown jewel by Stravinsky. The great German actress Doris Schade took on the speaking part of Persephone.
This lyrical melodrama, based on a text by André Gide, was written during Stravinsky’s neo-classical period, its subject matter being the ancient classical myth of death and re-birth. The rewarding tenor role of the priest Eumolpius presents Fritz Wunderlich at the pinnacle of his art. This live recording of this rarely performed work is a unique document and closes a gap in the discographic legacy of the singer who died so prematurely.