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Lauritz Melchior


Lauritz Melchior was the to begin the fantastic Wagnerian heldentenors (heroic tenors) to sing on information, and he was the very first operatic tenor to sing on radio. His documented legacy is known as a benchmark for all those following Siegfrieds and Tristans. You can just imagine just what a legacy was dropped when he and his wife fled Germany in 1939; his house there was eventually occupied and looted by both German and Russian military and a assortment of unpublished recordings was useful for focus on practice. Contemporary review articles indicated that he was often lax to keep rhythms, and several of his debuts weren’t completely effective, but he previously an extended operatic profession. Melchior started performing young, whenever a boarder in his father’s home who was simply a voice instructor gave Melchior as well as the various other children within the family members performing lessons. He frequently followed his sister (who was simply blind) towards the opera, and from her reactions he discovered how dramatically effective a voice could be, also without stagecraft. Like many Wagnerian and heroic tenors, he began his career being a baritone (and incredibly briefly being a bass), initial learning privately with Paul Bang, and after he changed 21, their studies at the Copenhagen Royal Opera College. His unofficial debut is at 1912 as Germont in La Traviata with a little touring firm, the Zwicki and Stagel Opera Firm, and he produced his formal debut in 1913 as Silvio in I Pagliacci on the Royal Opera. He continued to be there for many seasons, initial in comprimario jobs, and afterwards in major jobs, beginning what appeared as if a solid profession being a Verdi baritone when performing di Luna in Il Trovatore as well as the elder Germont in La Traviata. A colleague noticed him consider an unwritten high C in Il Trovatore one night time and informed the directors from the Royal Opera she noticed the foundation of the heldentenor in Melchior’s tone of voice. The management decided and produced agreements for him to restudy his tone of voice using the tenor Wilhelm Herold. He produced his debut being a tenor in 1918 as Tannhauser, once again on the Copenhagen Royal Opera. Nevertheless, he was still uncertain of his technique and tone of voice. In 1919, a rich patron prompted the conductor Henry Woods to audition him, and he previously his London debut on the Proms in 1920. He found the eye of another patron, Hugh Walpole, the mentioned author, who offered Melchior having a nice allowance to help expand his studies in addition to support his family members. His Covent Backyard debut is at 1924 as Siegmund. He auditioned for Siegfried Wagner (the child from the composer) and produced his Bayreuth debut in 1924 as Parsifal. He continuing to consider leading assignments there, like the renowned 1930 Tristan und Isolde under Toscanini, who dubbed him “Tristanissimo,” until quickly before World Battle II. His Metropolitan debut is at 1926 as Tannhauser and he sang there frequently until 1950, when among Rudolf Bing’s initial activities as general supervisor was to drop to renew his agreement. This was partially for extra-musical factors, including a predilection for useful jokes and showing up on “low brow” locations such as for example radio humor and variety displays with Fred Allen and Bing Crosby, and partially for an evergrowing disinclination to wait lengthy rehearsals. Following this dismissal, Melchior retired in the stage, though he continuing to surface in movies and operettas, sang on the air (including a broadcast from the initial action of Die Walküre from Copenhagen on his 70th birthday), so when section of his very own touring music firm.

Quick Facts

Full Name Lauritz Melchior
Died March 19, 1973, Santa Monica, California, United States
Profession Actor, Singer
Nationality American, Danish
Spouse Mary Markham, Maria Hacker, Inger Nathanson
Children Ib Melchior
Music Songs Without a Song, In Fernem Land - "Lohengrin", Thrill of a Romance: Please Don't Say No, I Love You Truly, Schwanengesang, D. 957: No. 4. Serenade, The Emperor Waltz: The Kiss in Your Eyes, Vive l'amour, Drinking Song, Ein Schwert verhieß mir der Vater, Kornmodsglansen ved midnatstid, The Student Prince, Act I: Serenade, Kongernes Konge, Jenny i Rugen, Nu brister i alle de kløfter, Inbrunst im Herzen, Du bist der Lenz, Please Don't Say No, Lohengrin: "In fernem Land", Parsifal: "Nur eine Waffe taugt", Meistersinger: "Prize Song", Götterdämmerung, Otello: Dio Mi Potevi, Tannhäuser Act 1, Walküre Act 1, Tannhäuser Act 3, Tannhäuser: Dich Teure Halle, Mime hiess ein mürrischer Zwerg, Er Und Sie, Because, Siegfried: Waldweben, Tannhauser: Dir tone Lob, Tristan und Isolde: Act II Scene 2: Isolde! Geliebte!
Albums Tristan und Isolde, Wagner: Tannhäuser, Heldentenor Of The Century, Skandinavian Songs, Lauritz Melchior Anthology Vol. 1, Lauritz Melchoir - The German and Italian Repertoire, Die Walküre (Erich Leinsdorf, The London Symphony Orchestra feat. Nilsson, Vickers & London), Treasury of Opera, Wagner: Tristan und Isolde (New York, 1941), At His Best, Wagner : Die Walkure (New-York 1946), Lauritz Melchior Memorial, Great Opera Recordings / Richard Wagner: Tristan und Isolde [1937], Volume 2, Wagner: Tristan Und Isolde, Vol. 1, Richard Wagner : Tristan Und Isolde, Wagner: Tristan Und Isolde, Vol. 2, Wagner, Wagner: Lohengrin (Live), Wagner: Tristan Und Isolde, Vol. 3, Wagner: Premier acte de La Walkyrie (Mono Version), Wagner: La Walkyrie, Extraits & Le crépuscule des Dieux, Extraits (1941 Live Version, Mono Version), Lauritz Melchior Anthology Vol. 2, Wagner: Die Walkure Act 1, Melchoir & Flagstad in Copenhagen, Great Opera Recordings / Richard Wagner - Tristan Und Isolde, Vol. 1 [1937], Wagner Tristan And Isolde, Great Opera Recordings / Richard Wagner - Tristan Und Isolde, Vol. 3 [1937], Lebendige Vergangenheit II, Richard Wagner: Lohengrin (New York 1947), Voix immortelles (Mono Version), Tristan und Isolde (Metropolitan Opera Orchestra feat. conductor: Erich Leinsdorf), Wagner: Die Walkure Act II, Sing Wagner, Lauritz Melchior Anthology Vol. 5, Lauritz Melchior Anthology Vol. 6, Bruno Walter Conducts Wagner: Die Walküre - The Legendary Recording of Act One, Lauritz Melchior: Thrill Of Romance - 2 Sisters from Boston - Film Songs & Popular Songs, Wagner: Tristan und Isolde, Tannhäuser, Wagner, R.: Siegfried (Ring Cycle 3) (Excerpts) (Melchior, Tessmer) (1929-1932)
Movies The Stars Are Singing, Luxury Liner, This Time for Keeps, Two Sisters from Boston, Thrill of a Romance
TV Shows The Ed Sullivan Show, The Voice of Firestone

  • Facts
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1 Grandfather of Dirk Melchior.
2 Has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for recording at 1718 Vine Street in Hollywood, California.
3 Although an acclaimed tenor in his later professional career, he made his debut at the Royal Opera House in Copenhagen as a baritone in "Pagliacci".
4 Recorded some Richard Wagner arias and duets with Helen Traubel and conductor Arturo Toscanini.
5 He was the most famous Wagnerian tenor of his time, although he did record arias from other operas such as "Otello" and "I Pagliacci". He sang with both of the leading Wagnerian sopranos of the era, Kirsten Flagstad and Helen Traubel.
6 Often partnered with American soprano Helen Traubel.
7 Known for his incredibly high tenor and long-running performances as the bold-faced hero of composer Richard Wagner's best-known, "long-haired" operas, including "Tristan and Isolde" (223), "Tannhauser" (144), "Die Walkure" (183), "Lohengrin" (106), "Siegfried" (128) and "Parsifal" (81).
8 Debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in "Tannhauser".
9 Danish opera star who played character parts in MGM musicals in his twilight years.
10 Father of writer/director Ib Melchior
11 Died after emergency surgery.



Here's Edie 1963 TV Series
Make Room for Daddy 1959 TV Series Otto Nielsen
The Stars Are Singing 1953 Jan Poldi
Luxury Liner 1948 Olaf Eriksen
This Time for Keeps 1947 Richard Herald
Two Sisters from Boston 1946 Olstrom
Thrill of a Romance 1945 Mr. Nils Knudsen



Make Room for Daddy 1959 TV Series performer - 1 episode
The Stars Are Singing 1953 performer: "My Heart is Home", "Because", "Vesti la Giubba"
Luxury Liner 1948 performer: "Finale, Act III", "Helan Gar", "Come Back to Sorrento", "Spring came back to Vienna" reprise - uncredited
This Time for Keeps 1947 performer: "La donna è mobile", "M'Appari", "Ora è per sempre addio", "Agnus Dei" - uncredited
Two Sisters from Boston 1946 performer: "Opera Sequence Marie Antoinette" 1946, "Opera Sequence from 'Lohengrin'" 1850, "Preislied The Prize Song" 1868 - uncredited
Thrill of a Romance 1945 performer: "Please Don't Say No, Say Maybe", "Vesti la giubba", "Lonely Night", "Ich Liebe Dich", "Vive L'Amour", "I Want What I Want When I Want It" 1905, "Mattinata" - uncredited



Die alte und die neue Met 1966 TV Movie Himself
The Merv Griffin Show 1965 TV Series Himself
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson 1964 TV Series Himself - Guest
About Faces 1960 TV Series Himself
The Jack Paar Tonight Show 1959 TV Series Himself
The Arthur Murray Party 1952-1959 TV Series Himself / Himself - Guest
Glamorous Hollywood 1958 Documentary short Himself
This Is Your Life 1958 TV Series Himself
The Lux Show 1958 TV Series Himself
The Big Record 1957 TV Series Himself
The Spike Jones Show 1957 TV Series Himself
The Name's the Same 1952-1955 TV Series Himself - Contestant
The Jimmy Durante Show 1954 TV Series Himself
The Dave Garroway Show 1953 TV Series Himself
The Voice of Firestone 1950-1952 TV Series Himself
The Ed Sullivan Show 1950-1952 TV Series Himself
All Star Revue 1951 TV Series Himself - Guest Opera Tenor
What's My Line? 1951 TV Series Himself - Mystery Guest
Ford Star Revue 1951 TV Series Himself - Opera Singer
Texaco Star Theatre 1948 TV Series Himself - Opera Tenor

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