Lotte Lehmann & Her Legacy: Volume 6

LL tells the story of her contract with Bruno Walter at Covent Garden; all three roles in Der Rosenkavalier; singing actress; imitation a sign of artistic weakness; open to new conceptions; she’s learned from the role of the Marschallin; stopping her singing career; then lost her voice; connection with audience; thrown out of voice school, advice to students; Bruno Walter offers his tribute to Lehmann, recorded later and elsewhere.

LL/Terkel 1960 #1

Two different worlds: Lied/Opera; acting not as important earlier; Elsa as beginner; dislikes being called “Wagnerian soprano”; good training today, but lack of opportunity; Grace Bumbry; today’s singers live different life; ensemble of artists, not stars; presently stylized Wagner; she’d build opera houses in America; translations of opera; advice to students: don’t give up.

LL/Terkel 1960 #2
LL/Terkel “Lotte Lehmann is in Chicago…” returning to the previous interview “1960 #1” heard above.
LL/Terkel on the Marschallin (an excerpt from “1960 #1” heard above.

One of the best interviews: LL discusses her book Five Operas and Richard Strauss; about her portrayals of famous roles; Age of Marschallin, Ochs; Marschallin’s feelings toward Ochs, Octavian; Strauss memories; never a correct singer, but the story more important; retirement from opera; Lieder became her career, but when she stopped singing Lieder, knew that opera had been more important for her; sings vicariously through her students; Meistersinger Quintet story; Strauss telling her to do nothing when not singing, but still in character; why Strauss wrote Octavian for a woman; complicated story in Frau ohne Schatten, but love breaks through; Strauss wrote for a fighting woman, perhaps inspired by his wife; LL reads that last lines of her Five Operas and Richard Strauss.

LL/Terkel 1967

Short wrap-up of the interview and a few words about some of her favorite recordings. LL mis-remembers: Hunding wasn’t sung by Kipnis, but rather by List.

LL/Terkel 1967 wrap-up
LL/Terkel on Bumbry

Terkel was so fascinated with Lehmann’s 1951 Farewell Recital in New York’s Town Hall that he fashioned the whole last chapter of his book And They All Sang around that recital and this speech that she so movingly spoke.

LL’s 1951 Farewell speech in Town Hall
Intro to Die Walküre
Intro to Andrea Chénier
Intro to Die Meistersinger

Two introductions to Der Rosenkavalier.

Intro to Der Rosenkavalier (Acts I & II)
Intro to Der Rosenkavalier (Act III)
“Let’s Talk It Over” about Eternal Flight and even Singing ‘Neath the Southern Cross, a diary that Lehmann wanted to publish as a book with photos taken from her 1937 tour of Australia. Sadly, that project was never completed.
Lehmann on her Eternal Flight which is read dramatically.
LL 1937 Australia
Lehmann was always fascinated by animals.
LL/Gutman on Arabella
LL in the winter costume as Arabella with the opera’s composer Richard Strauss

Interview by Dick Johnston; KDB; 14 June 1960; on the MAW, teaching in London, visiting Salzburg, Bayreuth, and Munich for operas; preparations for the MAW production of Arabella.

LL/Dick Johnston

At the MAW in 1958 Maurice Abravanel introduces LL who is directing the school’s Der Rosenkavalier. She tells the story of the opera with insight into the various character’s psychological motivation.

LL on Rosenkavalier #1

The 1958 talk continues: background of Der Rosenkavalier with the Trio, analyzing the interactions of the characters. “Ja, ja” story, though not exactly correct. Strauss anecdotes: their first meeting (Ariadne), singing Intermezzo, his home life, as conductor, jokes, character, “reluctant with praise.”

LL on Rosenkavalier #2

5 February 1938 Metropolitan Opera intermission feature in which LL discusses the role of the Marschallin. She likes roles with dramatic possibilities; the voice is the instrument of feelings; power of self-transformation. Covent Garden first performance; Strauss approval; “Ja, ja” story (only partially correct).

An early interview with Lehmann on her role as the Marschallin.

Interview by John Gutman; 22 February 1958; Metropolitan Opera intermission feature on LL’s interpretation of the role of the Marschallin, her age, age of Ochs, Octavian. LL’s first Sophie, first Marschallin. LL never a correct singer, but story more important. Her retirement from opera, Lieder, now as a teacher, living vicariously through her students.

LL/Gutman on Der Rosenkavalier

In a poorly recorded segment, LL, (in Santa Barbara) unaware that she’s being taped, tells of the famous contralto Fleischer-Edel criticizing her “ugly legs” as seen in her costume as Octavian (seen above). In that production, Tily de Garmo (Zweig) sang Sophie, and recently met with LL and said something along the same lines. It’s difficult to decipher some of the talk.

LL tells of her ugly legs as Octavian

January 1963 Interview on WQXR after her direction of the three leads in the Met’s Der Rosenkavalier. Many celebrities recorded LL tributes for this broadcast: Ormandy, Schwarzkopf, Kipnis, Ulanowsky, Bruno Walter, etc. LL speaks of her Hamburg and Vienna times; her life in Santa Barbara. Music selections have been removed.


February 1967 Interview by Richard Calhoun; for “Hall of Song”; on first appearances in US, Metropolitan Opera, early career, Vienna; Strauss as a person; acting; Wagnerian roles, Covent Garden roles; Bruno Walter; Melchior, other greats; her work on Metropolitan Opera production of Der Rosenkavalier; present activities.

LL/MJ Early Ariadne
LL/MJ Second Ariadne
LL/MJ Strauss as composer/conductor
LL/MJ Elektra, Salome, Rosenkavalier
LL/MJ Puccini: Tosca, Il Tritico
LL/MJ Die Frau ohne Schatten
LL/MJ Contemporary Singing
LL/Terkel: Teaching Interpretation
LL/PJ #1
LL/PJ #2
This was a TV interview from 1963, but only the audio is available.
LL on Toscanini
LL on Bruno Walter (edited)
LL on Bruno Walter (unedited)
Lehmann on her trip to Vienna
LL/Desert Island
LL/Slade (opens with unknown hilarious interchanges); actual interview with Slade begins at 2:50.
LL/Cross & Slade?
LL/Cross & Amis
LL/Faulkner #1
LL/Faulkner #2
LL/Faulkner #3
LL/Unknown Interviewer #1
LL/Unknown Interviewer #2
LL/Unknown Interviewer #3
LL/Unknown Interviewer #4
LL/GH (edited)
LL/GH (lightly edited)
LL/GH on Melchior (no editing)
LL with Melchior