This page will attempt to bring together all the information that’s available on this website about Lehmann’s portrayal of the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier by Richard Strauss .
Since Lehmann is best known for that role it’s interesting to see where she sang the role and how often. The total number of performances is somewhere between 131 and 141, but that’s just the number that we can discover from the various sources at our disposal.
Here’s a breakdown: Though Lehmann had sung Octavian at the Vienna Opera, once she’d begun to perform the Marschallin at Covent Garden in 1924, she was in demand for that role in Vienna and ended up singing it 45 times there. The next most performances were 26 at the Met, then 23 with Covent Garden, 18 at the Salzburg Festival, 7 for the San Francisco Opera. Her final opera appearance was as the Marschallin in 1946 for the San Francisco Opera on tour in Los Angeles. There were four Marschallins in Chicago, two appearances in Paris, Berlin, and Hamburg. The other times that Lehmann sang the Marschallin were single performances in Cleveland, Philadelphia, Basel, and Graz.
Berlin offers the single greatest lapse in such numbers. There were three opera companies in that city during Lehmann’s time and there’s little authentic information about the various works performed or with which casts. That we only know of two is an obvious undercount, but there’s just no serious scholarship yet on this.
From the Apple iBook, volume 2, but in website format, you’ll hear Lehmann sing excerpts from the role, speak about the whole opera, hear her in interviews about the role, and discover information on the 1933 recording.
(One can hear Lehmann’s portions of the 1933 HMV Rosenkavalier recording at: https://lottelehmannleague.org/the-lehmann-recordings/ Just scroll down to recording 212.)
You can hear LL recite (not sing) the monolog from Act I ‘Die Zeit…’ https://lottelehmannleague.org/2022/volume-2-her-legendary-marschallin/
You may want to read magazine articles that may reference LL’s role in Der Rosenkavalier (use your search tool on the page). Or you can read about the famous recorded performances of the opera with Lehmann as the Marschallin. Finally, you can read Lehmann’s summary of the whole Der Rosenkavalier.
In her retirement, Lehmann painted tiles representing the whole Rosenkavalier story. You can view them here. They begin on number 35.
Was the Marschallin Lehmann’s favorite role? Here’s an early radio interview with her on that subject.
Conductor Maurice Abravanel on Lehmann’s Marschallin:
Here in her own words is an article by Judy Sutcliffe that shows her Lehmann connection through the role as the Marschallin.