Windgassen, Wolfgang (Fritz Hermann)

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Windgassen, Wolfgang (Fritz Hermann)

Windgassen, Wolfgang (Fritz Hermann), distinguished German tenor; b. Annemasse, Haute Savoie, June 26, 1914; d. Stuttgart, Sept. 8, 1974. He received his early vocal training from his father, Fritz Windgassen (b. Hamburg, Feb. 9, 1883; d. Murnau, April 17,1963), who was a leading tenor at the Stuttgart Opera, then continued his studies at the Stuttgart Cons, with Maria Ranzow and Alfons Fischer. He made his operatic debut in Pforzheim in 1941 as Alvaro in La forza del destino; after military service in the German army, he joined the Stuttgart Opera in 1945, remaining on its roster until 1972. From 1951 to 1970 he appeared at the Bayreuth Festivals, where he was a leading Heldentenor. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. on Jan. 22, 1957, as Siegmund, but sang there only that season. He sang regularly at Convent Garden in London from 1955 to 1966. He was especially successful in Wagnerian roles, as Tannhäuser, Tristan, Parsifal, Siegfried, and Lohengrin; he also appeared as Radamès and Don José.


B. Wessling, W. W. (Bremen, 1967).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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