Opera Scotland

Meistersinger von Nürnberg Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg; The Mastersingers of Nuremberg; Mastersingers

Tours by decade

1890s - 2 tours

1894 - Royal Italian Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1896 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1900s - 2 tours

1908 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1909 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1910s - 2 tours

1912 - Denhof Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1913 - Denhof Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1920s - 7 tours

1920 - Beecham Grand Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1921 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1922 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1923 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1924 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1927 - British National Opera Company
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1929 - Covent Garden Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1930s - 1 tour

1932 - Covent Garden Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1950s - 1 tour

1952 - Hamburg State Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1970s - 3 tours

1976 - Scottish Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1977 - Scottish Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra
1978 - Scottish Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra

1980s - 1 tour

1983 - Scottish Opera
Fully Staged with Orchestra

2000s - 2 tours

2010s - 4 tours

Tours by location

Scotland, UK - 39 entries

1896 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Glasgow
1894 - Royal Italian Opera Company
Edinburgh
1896 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Edinburgh
1908 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Glasgow
1909 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Edinburgh
1909 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Aberdeen
1909 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Dundee
1909 - Moody-Manners Opera Company
Glasgow
1912 - Denhof Opera Company
Glasgow
1912 - Denhof Opera Company
Edinburgh
1913 - Denhof Opera Company
Edinburgh
1920 - Beecham Grand Opera Company
Glasgow
1921 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Edinburgh
1922 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Glasgow
1923 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Glasgow
1924 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Aberdeen
1924 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Greenock
1924 - Carl Rosa Opera Company
Glasgow
1927 - British National Opera Company
Glasgow
1927 - British National Opera Company
Edinburgh
1927 - British National Opera Company
Aberdeen
1927 - British National Opera Company
Dundee
1929 - Covent Garden Opera
Aberdeen
1929 - Covent Garden Opera
Edinburgh
1932 - Covent Garden Opera
Edinburgh
1952 - Hamburg State Opera
Edinburgh
1976 - Scottish Opera
Glasgow
1977 - Scottish Opera
Edinburgh
1977 - Scottish Opera
Aberdeen
1977 - Scottish Opera
Glasgow
1978 - Scottish Opera
Edinburgh
1983 - Scottish Opera
Glasgow
1983 - Scottish Opera
Edinburgh
2006 - Edinburgh International Festival
Edinburgh
2007 - Edinburgh Players Opera Group
Edinburgh
2011 - Glyndebourne Festival Opera
Edinburgh
2013 - Wagner Society of Scotland
Stirling
2015 - Wagner Society of Scotland
Edinburgh
2016 - Glyndebourne Productions
St Andrews

England, UK - 10 entries

Music
Richard Wagner (born Leipzig, 2 March 1813; died Venice, 13 February 1883)

Text
The composer.

Source
Original.

Premieres
First performance: Munich (Royal Court Theatre), 21 June 1868.
First UK performance: London (Drury Lane), 30 May 1882.
First performance in Scotland: Edinburgh (Royal Lyceum Theatre), 15 September 1894.
Scottish Opera premiere: Glasgow (Theatre Royal), 15 December 1976.

Background
In the middle of composing The Ring, Wagner broke off to produce Tristan, and after that effort he decided to produce a light comedy before returning to The Ring. Meistersinger developed into a far larger work than he seems to have intended, and though it is certainly a comedy, it is a piece of great humanity, perhaps the most three-dimensional of all his works. Unusually for opera, many of the situations arising in Die Meistersinger are occasions when singing is an entirely natural activity, whether the opening scene in church, or the subsequent trials and rehearsals of new songs, or the final song contest itself.

Characters
Walther von Stolzing, a young knight (tenor)
Eva, daughter of Pogner (soprano)
Magdalene, her nurse (mezzo-soprano)
David, Sachs’ apprentice (tenor)
Hans Sachs, a shoemaker and Mastersinger (bass-baritone)
Veit Pogner, a goldsmith and Mastersinger (bass)
Sixtus Beckmesser, Town Clerk and Mastersinger (baritone)
Nine more Mastersingers (various)
Nightwatchman (bass)

Plot Summary
The opera is located in sixteenth century Nuremberg, where the guilds of master craftsmen also take pride in their abilities as singers and poets. Walther, a young knight visiting the town, attends a church service, where he is attracted to Eva, the goldsmith’s daughter. He discovers that her hand is to be the prize in the approaching song contest, and resolves to enter. His main rivals are both middle-aged masters. Sachs is a cobbler, a leading member of the Mastersingers, and an upholder of the traditional virtues of the guilds, while also being open-minded enough to accept innovations. Beckmesser, the Town Clerk, is both more unscrupulous and far less talented and imaginative. Walther’s initial efforts at composition are derided by Beckmesser and the other masters, but Sachs observes a latent talent in the youth, and also recognises that Eva favours this young knight. He nobly gives up his own claim, and the final contest rests between Walther and Beckmesser. The clerk steals the song lyric which he finds in Sachs’ workshop, not knowing it is Walther’s composition, but at the contest his grotesque attempt to improvise a melody makes him a laughing stock. In a petulant outburst he confesses that the dreadful verses are actually by Sachs, who then reveals the author to be Walther, whose performance makes him a clear winner of the contest and of Eva.

The Cast

Augustin Moser
 a tailor
Balthasar Zorn
 a pewterer
David
 apprentice to Sachs
Eva
 daughter of Pogner
Fritz Kothner
 a baker
Hans Foltz
 a coppersmith
Hans Sachs
 a shoemaker
Hans Schwarz
 a stocking-weaver
Hermann Ortel
 a soap-boiler
Konrad Nachtigall
 a tinsmith
Kunz Vogelgesang
 a furrier
Magdalene
 Eva's nurse
Nightwatchman
 
Sixtus Beckmesser
 town clerk
Ulrich Eisslinger
 a grocer
Veit Pogner
 a goldsmith
Walther von Stolzing
 a young knight

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