Gustav Neidlinger (21 March 1910 – 26 December 1991) was a German bass-baritone, who was most famous for playing Wagner's "howling-and-spitting" villains. Born in Mainz, Neidlinger studied at the conservatory in Frankfurt, where he was trained by Otto Rottsieper. He debuted in 1931 at the Stadttheater in Mainz, where he sang until 1934. From 1934 to 1935, he was engaged at the Stadttheater in Plauen, Sachsen, and, from 1935 to 1950, he was a member of the opera in Hamburg. In 1937, he took part in the world premiere of the opera Schwarzer Peter by Norbert Schultze at this opera house. In 1950, he became a member of the Staatsoper Stuttgart, where he grew to be very popular and was, in 1977, named an honorary member of the ensemble. In Stuttgart, he sang in Igor Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress. In 1956, he also became a member of the Staatsoper in Vienna, where he had sung as early as 1941. He also sang at the Grand Opéra Paris (1953–67) and at Covent Garden in London in tandem with the Stuttgart ensemble (1955, 1963 (Telramund), and 1965 (Alberich)).[1] He as honored with the title German Kammersänger in 1952.

Neidlinger's vocal abilities were marked by an imposing richness of sound, dark timbre, and cannon-ball density as well as a gift for delivering powerful, dramatic performances, bringing him success as a major Wagner interpreter. His interpretation of the role of Alberich in Der Ring des Nibelungen was celebrated worldwide, and still is, through Sir George Solti's famous DECCA studio recording, and Karl Böhm's recorded performance from Bayreuth 1967, both of which have been mainstay recordings since the vinyl days. He sang at the Bayreuth Festival from 1952 until 1975, mainly Alberich, but also Klingsor from Parsifal, Kurwenal from Tristan und Isolde, Fritz Kothner from Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, and occasionally, Hans Sachs and Friedrich von Telramund. He sang Alberich at the Metropolitan Opera in 1972. In addition to his triumphs in Wagner, Neidlinger also had great success in Buffo roles as well. He died in Bad Ems.

Partial discographyEdit

Bass solos in Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B Minor. Vienna 1959, Dir.: Hermann Scherchen (Deutsche Grammophon). Jules Massenet: Manon. 1950, Dir.: Wilhelm Schüchter (Myto). van Bett in Albert Lortzing: Zar und Zimmermann. Stuttgart 1952, Dir.: Ferdinand Leitner (Deutsche Grammophon). Ollendorf in Karl Millöcker: Der Bettelstudent, Dir.: Werner Schmidt-Bölcke. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: The Marriage of Figaro. Sung in German translation. Vienna, Dir.: Clemens Krauss (Preiser). He plays Doctor Bartolo. W.A. Mozart: Don Giovanni. NDR Hamburg 1951, Dir.: Leopold Ludwig (Urania). He plays Masetto. Strolch in Carl Orff: Die Kluge. London 1956, Dir.: Wolfgang Sawallisch (EMI). Richard Strauss: Daphne. NDR, Dir.: Arthur Grüber (Myto). Colonna in Richard Wagner: Rienzi. Stuttgart 1957, Dir.: Lovro von Matačić (Living Stage). Telramund in Richard Wagner: Lohengrin. La Scala 1965, Dir.: Wolfgang Sawallisch (Living Stage). Kurwenal in Richard Wagner: Tristan and Isolde. Bayreuth 1953, Dir.: Eugen Jochum (Melodram). Kurwenal, Holland Festival The Hague 1959, Dir.: Ferdinand Leitner (Myto). Kurwenal, Staatsoper Stuttgart 1973, Dir.: Carlos Kleiber (Living Stage). Fritz Kothner in Richard Wagner: Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg 1956, Dir.: Rudolf Kempe (EMI). Hans Sachs in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. Bayreuth 1957, Dir.: Clutyens (Walhall). Hans Sachs in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. Buenos Aires 1968, Dir.: Ferdinand Leitner (Living Stage). Alberich in Richard Wagner: Das Rheingold. RAI 1953, Dir.: Wilhelm Furtwängler (EMI). Alberich in the complete Der Ring des Nibelungen. Bayreuth 1953, Dir.: Clemens Krauss (Gala) Alberich. Bayreuth 1953, Dir.: Joseph Keilberth (Andromeda) Alberich. Bayreuth 1955, Joseph Keilberth (Testament) Alberich. Bayreuth 1956-7, Dir.: Hans Knappertsbusch (Melodram) Alberich. Bayreuth 1967 Dir.: Karl Böhm (Philips). Alberich. Vienna 1958, 1962, 1964. Dir.: Georg Solti (The famous Decca studio recording). Alberich. Das Rheingold, 1952, Dir.: Wilhelm Schüchter (Gebhardt Records). Alberich, Der Ring des Nibelungen, Bayreuth 1969. Dir.: Lorin Maazel ( Klingsor in Richard Wagner: Parsifal. Bayreuth 1954. Dir.: Hans Knappertsbusch (Melodram). Also, 1956, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, and 1966, all under Knappertsbusch at Bayreuth. Amfortas in Parsifal. Grand Opera, Paris. March 26, 1954. Dir: Ferdinand Leitner. (Profil). Debussy - Pelléas et Mélisande, sung in German. (Wissmann, Windgassen, Welitsch, Hagner Rec. 1948 (Stuttgart, broadcast) Dir. Wetzelsberger (Walhall Eternity) Beethoven - Don Pizarro in Fidelio (King, Jones, Greindl) Berlin 1970 Dir: Böhm (Deutsche Grammophone DVD) Beethoven - Don Pizarro in Fidelio (Jurinac, Peerce, Ernster) Baveria 1961 Dir: Knappertsbusch (Theorama Records) Franz von Suppe - Boccaccio (Glawitsch, Streich, Fiedler) recorded Oct-1949 & bonus Dec-1949 Dir. Schuchter and Marszalek (Membran) Carl Maria von Weber - Euryanthe (Eipperle, Windgassen, Kinasiewicz) recorded 8-Jan-1954 Dir. Leitner (Walhall Eternity) Mussorsky - Father Varlaam in Boris Godunov, sung in German by Welitsch, Hann, Moedl, Schock, Rothenberger from Hamburg, 1950 (Walhall) Gustav Neidlinger: Dokumente einer Sangerkarriere, an anthology of exerpts from Preiser Records Can be seen on film/DVD in rehearsal as Alberich, also performing in the Choral Symphony under Klemperer.


1.Jump up ^ Karl Josef Kutsch und Leo Riemens: Großes Sängerlexikon. 3. Auflage. Verlag K.G. Saur, München 1999

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