Original Air Date: 01/21/1978
Levine; McCracken, Kubiak, Bumbry, Weikl, Macurdy
This is McCracken’s only broadcast outing as Tannhauser, and he is really very fine. Weikl and Bumbry are tops in these roles and Kubiak is a very decent Elisabeth. Levine is at his very best. What is inexplicable to me is why this performance has not made its way to MOoD. McCracken has 597 Met appearances, more than 300 of them after his return as Otello in March 1963. Bumbry, to my mind is the most important American mezzo of the 20th century. Venus was a breakthrough role for her in 1960 at the Bayreuth Festival. This is her only broadcast from the Met of Venus. This performance does great honor to all of the cast and I am grateful that it has been regularly on Sirius, but the better sound afforded in MOoD would definitely benefit Tannhauser.

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