Hermann Prey (baritone), Franz Hawlata (bass-baritone), Regina Klepper (soprano), Cristoph Spath (tenor), WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne, Helmuth Froschauer (conductor)
The first performance of Victo Nessler's The Trumpeter of Sackingen on 4 May 1884 at the Stadttheater in Leipzig was an unprecedented success. For the hundredth Leipzig performance there was a procession with flaming torches in honour of the composer. The Trumpeter then began its triumphant conquest of the entire German theatre scene; within a few years the opera had been performed several thousand times and, by the turn of the 20th Century, had established its place in the repertoire of all the major opera houses. That great critical authority Eduard Hanslick made an attempt to analyze the 'popular force, the winning something' in Nessler's 'musical mediocrity', and concluded: 'The most remarkable thing in this unprecedentedly successful opera is precisely its success'! In 1884 - the year following Wagner's death, which also saw the premieres of Massenet's Manon and Puccini's first opera, Le Villi, Bruckner's Seventh Symphony and Mahler's Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer) - the tastes of the Biedermeier period and its quaint Romanticism had made their second conquest of the German opera world.
Nessler Der Trompeter von Sackingen