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Erna Berger

At the same time when many high sopranos offered only a vapor whistle audio, the cool, pure timbre of Erna Berger’s instrument fell upon the ears being a balm. Though not really large, her device had sufficient having power to end up being noticed in Europe’s largest theaters rather than get lost also on view spaces from the previous Metropolitan Opera where she sang briefly from 1949. Cut and petite, she continued to be a reliable stage amount into her fifties and maintained to the finish of her profession the firmness and clearness of shade which got brought her acclaim young. She was an achieved recitalist and concert vocalist aswell, excelling in the artwork of German music and such concert functions as Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. Created near Dresden, Berger shifted with her family members to Paraguay when extremely youthful, and was reared there on the farm cleared through the jungle. In her past due teens, she worked well like a governess to make funds which allows her to review tone of voice in Dresden. She qualified there with Melizza Hirzel and, in auditioning to get a scholarship, was noticed by conductor Fritz Busch who involved her forthwith. Berger produced her opera debut in the Dresden Opera in 1925 as the Initial Boy in Die Zauberflöte. There, she sang several tasks, most of them in the Italian and French repertories. When she shifted to Berlin, her status grew enormously and conductors throughout European countries began to respect her as essential for many from the coloratura tasks, such as for example Zerbinetta, the Queen of the night time, and Konstanze. From 1930 to 1933, Berger was involved in the Bayreuth Event, her Shepherd in Tannhäconsumer and Woodbird in Siegfried becoming thought to be definitive. The previous role is maintained in the famous Tannhäuser documented at Bayreuth in 1930 with Maria Müller, Herbert Janssen, and Ivar Andrésen. Her Salzburg debut arrived in 1932 when she sang Blondchen in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail; she continuing to sing there until 1954 when her Zerlina still made an appearance and sounded vibrant. On Apr 30, 1934, she made an appearance for the very first time on the London stage when her Marzelline, referred to as “charming,” was noticed with Lotte Lehmann, Franz Völker, and Alexander Kipnis. Her Woglinde in Das Rheingold was furthermore praised as was her Woodbird. A come back engagement was organized for the next calendar year and, in 1938, Berger was finally open to perform Konstanze (Sir Thomas Beecham provides insisted on her behalf). She also sang the Queen of the night time and Sophie in Rosenkavalier. Although her Konstanze was considered lightweight, it had been, regarding to Francis Toye, “officially high quality.” Similar sights were portrayed about her Queen: well sung, if relatively missing the daemonic component. Her Sophie, nevertheless, brought no reservations whatever. When Berger came back in 1949, her Queen was even more fully valued and the general public as well as the critics received both her Sophie and Gilda with unreserved joy. Rosenkavalier was the opera where Berger was presented towards the Metropolitan Opera market on November 21, 1949. Described by Irving Kolodin as “a wonderfully 100 % pure, well-phrased Sophie,” Berger continued to sing various other such specialties as Gilda as well as the Queen of the night time. From composer/critic Virgil Thomson she won this compliment: “She actually is among the great resources of musical fulfillment in our period.”

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