Monday, September 17, 2007

Fritz Wunderlich Sings Handel-Xerxes-Holy Art Thou

I once trod amongst the Germans, so I know there is a tenor buried in that land, in Munich, born 1930 and died 1966. Had he lived longer, the whole world would've been in his hands. His name was Fritz Wunderlich, who as a widow's young son sang of mornings in the bakery where he made bread. The bakery's patrons demanded he take his voice to a conservatory and project it to others. Which he did.

My favorites of his are not yet on YouTube, but if you click on the video above, the finest tenor of the 20th century will sing 'Ombra Mai Fu' (Holy Art Thou) for you. The first of his songs I ever heard was 'Selig Sind, die Verfolgung Leiden' (Blessed Are The Meek), from Der Evangelimann, a children's bible opera. He lifted it up into the music of the spheres, and I'll see what I can do about tracking the performance down. It's been 25 years, an apostasy or two hence, and still I miss it.

Wunderlich's death was officially an accident, from falling down a flight of stairs. Every German I ever knew believed he was poisoned by a jealous rival.


Naj said...


you have way with words brother.

Listening, although I rarely ever Youtube on my laptop, as the fan flies out of the window if I do :)


MarcLord said...

As do you, my dear sister, especially when you use them to praise me!

Wunderlich really was awesome.