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Wagner: Die Walküre

20/08/2006
The Sunday Herald Sun (Australia)
Bob Crimeen
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THE first instalment of the anticipated Australian recording project – the world’s first six-channel super audio CD production of Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen four-opera cycle – is reality. For Wagnerphiles, this Walküre should be a compulsory acquisition.

Curiously, Melbourne-based Melba founder Maria Vandamme has released the cycle’s second opera first, but Walküre, the most accessible and familiar Ring opera, is the one most likely to grab the public’s attention.

Under young Israeli conductor Asher Fisch’s direction, the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and an almost all-Australian assemblage of singers thrillingly bring to life music as brutally demanding as any composed for the human voice.
 
The recording’s dedicatee, Melba Foundation founding benefactor, Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, is surely a proud woman.