Gewandhausorchester-Logo1938   Tristan und Isolde

                     Leipzig New Theatre

SLIDESHOW: Scenes from the Leipzig production of “Tristan” photographed by director Wolfram Humperdinck and set designer Max Elten.
Fotos: Leipziger Festschrift zum 125. Geburtstag Richard Wagners 1938


Margarete Bäumer als Isolde in "Tristan und Isolde", 1938 © Foto aus dem CD-Booklet - Stadtgeschichtliches Museum Leipzig, Paul Cichorius Sammlung

Margarete Bäumer as “Isolde”
in “Tristan und Isolde”, 1938
© Foto aus dem CD-Booklet – Stadtgeschichtliches Museum Leipzig, Paul Cichorius Sammlung

Richard Wagner
„Tristan und Isolde“
Premiere: Sunday, April 5, 1938

Conductor: Paul Schmitz
Director: Wolfram Humperdinck
Set designer & costume designer Max Elten

Isolde: Margarete Bäumer
Tristan: Carl Hartmann MET NY / August Seider
Kurwenal: Walter Zimmer / Willi Schwenkreis
Melot: Horst Falke / Walter Streckfuß
König Marke: Ernst Osterkamp / Friedrich Dalberg
Brangäne: Camilla Kallab

Gewandhaus Orchestra
Leipzig Opera Choir




Notice in a German record store in 1943
Advertisement showing the regulations pertaining to the purchase of records under wartime conditions:
The purchase of a new gramophone record (because of the scarcity of the shellac imported from British India) necessitated handing in to the record dealer initially one and later at least two old records.
They were “mixed with new raw materials and processed into the homogeneous mass from which new records were produced”.
This recycling process inevitably had an adverse affect on sound quality.
Document: Collection Dr. Jens Uwe Völmecke


The “Tristan und Isolde”-Recording

The major portion of the Leipzig recording was released only after the end of the war.
Because of the scarcity of materials, only poor-quality material was available for pressings, which severely impaired sound quality.
Because Odeon’s headquarters were in the American sector of Berlin, release permission had to obtained from the “news clearance office” of the military government censors – as the label shows.

The recording made of Brünnhilde’s final chorus from Götterdämmerung (with Bäumer and Dalberg) on August 17, 1943 was never released. On the recording sheet, the remark “wait and see” was noted on October 12, 1943.



Provisional postwar record label used by Odeon in 1947/1948 for the Leipzig Tristan recording of 1943.

Richard Wagner
Aus Tristan und Isolde
Soll ich lauschen?“ – „Laß mich sterben!   Scene II. Aufzug
Conductor: Paul Schmitz
Isolde: Margarete Bäumer
Tristan: August Seider
Kurwenal: Willi Schwenkreis
Melot: Walter Streckfuß
König Marke: Friedrich Dalberg
Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra
Record: Leipzig, 20. August 1943
Odeon O-8806-8808 Matrizen: xxB9187-9192 Erstveröffentlicht: Nov./Dez. [1943] 1947



More opera performances with Paul Schmitz and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra

Lautsprechersymbol-klein-1 PRODUKTIONSDETAILS ZU “DON CARLOS” 1943