Wagner on "die meistersinger von nürnberg"
Die Meistersinger had been first performed in Munich in 1868. The Dresden production was the second and it received its first performance on 21 January 1869. Wagner had originally suggested that his disciple Hans Richter might supervise the production. This was not accepted by the Dresden staff and so the composer was forced to observe from afar, relying on his old friend Mitterwurzer, the first Wolfram in Tannhäuser, to inform him of how matters stood.
Mitterwurzer had reported to Wagner the tempi of the conductor Julius Rietz in the forthcoming Dresden production, and Wagner expresses his satisfaction but also his lack of faith in the capabilities of Rietz and other German Kapellmeisters to fulfill his intentions adequately. Wagner acknowledges his trust in Mitterwurzer as a performer, urging him to keep to his own feeling for tempo in his work, mentioning that Schlosser will be present to attend to the nuances of the production, and explaining the necessity of not altering the score in any way if he is to be persuaded to travel to Dresden for the performance:
"If they had wanted me to come to Dresden for this first performance
, they should have taken my opus seriously without any reservation.
I do not want, by my presence, to seem to sanction in this respect
the usual procedures of our conductors, etc., and will therefore not
attend the performance of the Meistersinger in Dresden..."
A complete English translation is included in the lot.
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