One of our early releases was the 1908 recording of Bizet's Carmen sung in German by a cast headed by the larger than life Bohemian soprano, Emmy Destinn. During that year she also participated in a similar recording of Gounod's Faust, which in Germany was titled Margarethe to differentiate it from Goethe's revered masterpiece. We have, over the years, received requests from our customers to reissue this earliest recording of Gounod's opera, and we are finally issuing this recording as a two-CD set. The cast includes tenor Karl Jörn, mezzo Marie Goetze, baritone Desider Zador, and bass Paul Knüpfer. The orchestra and chorus are in the capable hands of Bruno Seidler-Winkler. Michael Aspinall's informative essay includes biographical information on the singers and a thorough critical analysis of the performance. The second CD will conclude with ten of Emmy Destinn's most revered recordings from the period 1906 to 1910.
The French dramatic soprano, Germaine Lubin (1890-1979) will be remembered for her stunning Wagnerian portrayals, her striking beauty, and the accusations of Nazi sympathies that shaped her later life and career. Lubin received her initial training at the Paris Conservatory; debuted at the Opéra-Comique as Antonia in Les contes d’Hoffmann; studied with Felia Litvinne; sang Isolde at Covent Garden under Thomas Beecham, to Lauritz Melchior’s Tristan (1939); appeared in Berlin singing Kundry, Sieglinde and Strauss’s Ariadne with the composer conducting (1939); and depicted Sieglinde to Flagstad’s Brünnhilde under Furtwaengler (1939). This 2 CD set features Lubin's complete recorded output and includes two important essays that provide insight into the woman whose life was inextricably woven with her art: an essay by the French scholar Vincent Giroud on her life and career and a personal memoir by André Tebeuf. To complete this two CD set Marston had included recordings by Marcelle Bunlet and Lucienne de Méo whose first name has sometimes been incorrectly listed as Cléontine.
Over the past several years, we have published four volumes (2 CDs each) containing the complete known recordings of the Catalan mezzo, Conchita Supervia. We delayed issuing volume four because there were four recordings which we were still trying to locate: Ki3512 Canço de traginers (Longás); SO6942 Boires baixes (Granados); SO7901 El milagro de la virgen: Romanza (Chapi); SO7902 La reina mora: Romanza (Serrano). After what we thought was exhaustive searching, we more or less gave up hope and issued the final volume minus these titles. Now that the series has been completed, those four sides have finally surfaced. Thanks to a library in Barcelona and a private collector, we are issuing these very rare sides, together with six alternative takes not included in our previous releases. The accompanying booklet contains only a list of the contents.
The Muse Surmounted
A Celebration of Sincerity of the Heart and Transfixed Dedication in Singing Which Has Otherwise Gone Unrecognized
There are singers who were so enthusiastic about their own singing that they believed they were great despite their lack of technique or musicianship. This is a compilation of recordings by singers such as Florence Foster Jenkins, Tryphosa Bates-Batcheller, Mari Lyn, and many others.
Robert Levine in Classics Today said “This has to be heard to be believed, and believe me, it has to be heard ... This is priceless as a study in aberrant behavior, the history of opera, and sociology ...” Larry Holdridge in The Record Collector felt the singers contained in this compilation “...are demonstrating music from a different perspective. Theirs is simply the joy of performing without being restricted by the printed score and vocal technique ...” Rick Robertson for Amazon stated The Muse Surmounted “... is an uproariously funny excursion into what I would label ‘mal canto’. Each singer in this collection set her own substandard for vocal art, and each one is presented in transfers that allow the holes in one's technique to shine through. Brightly.... This is also a first-class production, with attention to quality in presentation. The program notes alone are worth the price of the CD. Gregor Benko has carefully researched these singers, often waiting years for leads to information.... ” (This is issued on the Homophone label.)
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Free CDs to Preferred Customers!
In recognition of our Preferred Customers, Marston created the Lagniappe Series. This series consists of single disc issues that are given to Preferred Customers free of charge. Read More.