The Budapest Festival Orchestra, under the baton of its musical director Iván Fischer, performs works by Liszt and Wagner at the Salle Pleyel. The mezzo-soprano Petra Lang joins them to perform excerpts from Wagner's Twilight of the Gods.
For this concert, Iván Fischer, founder and music director of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, presents a program completely devoted to German mythology, with Liszt's Mephisto Waltz No. 1 at its opening, which theme refers to the legendary characters Faust and Mephistopheles. Then three extracts of operas written by Wagner are performed.
The German mezzo-soprano Petra Lang has already performed on stages of European and international operas. Her repertoire includes numerous roles of works by Wagner. She has on several occasions performed the role of a bright and virtuoso Brünnhilde in Die Walküre, Siegfried and the Twilight of the Gods, last cornerstone of Wagner's tetralogy, which she performs here Siegfried's funeral march and final scene.
The concert appears like a travel through musical stories in Wagner's masterpieces: then the orchestra performs the Tannhäuser's Overture and Bacchanale in the Paris version, that tells the story of the poet Tannhäuser at a singing competition. Then the orchestra performs the Prelude of The Mastersingers of Nuremberg, probably one of its most successful preludes, on a score that highlights the main motives of his opera, from Walther's song to Sachs's dreams. Finally, the climax of this concert are the three extracts of the Twilight of the Gods, with Petra Lang's passionate performance.
Boston Symphony Orchestra, 1959-1961