Joel Berglund hovsångare och basbaryton

Joel Berglund hovsångare och basbaryton Joel Berglund - basbaryton

Joel Ingemar Berglund, född 4 juni 1903 i Torsåkers församling i Gästrikland, död 21 januari 1985 i Stockholm, var en svensk operasångare (basbaryton), operachef  och hovsångare.

Joel Berglund hovsångare och basbaryton

Berglund läste en notis i Norrlands-Posten om att man kunde få gratis sångutbildning vid Musikaliska Akademien i Stockholm. Han for dit för att provsjunga. Han kom in och blev snart en av Sveriges största sångare. Han studerade sång för Oskar Lejdström och John Forsell vid Musikkonservatoriet i Stockholm 1922–1928.

Han scendebuterade 1929 som Monterone i Rigoletto på Kungliga Teatern. Han gästspelade ofta i Wien, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Berlin, Budapest och New York. Berglund vann särskilt stor ryktbarhet som uttolkare av Richard Wagners roller, bland annat titelrollen i Den flygande holländaren, en roll han även framförde i Bayreuth.

Debut Metropolitan Opera

Berglund debuterade på Metropolitan Opera som Hans Sachs i Mästersångarna från Nürnberg i januari 1946. Han avslutade sin sejour genom att sjunga Gurnemanz i Parsifal  i april 1949. Sammanlagt medverkade han i femtiofem föreställningar.

Han var chef för Kungliga Teatern mellan åren 1949 och 1956, och pensionerades från densamma år 1957. Därefter gav han konserter och gästspel, och var verksam senast våren 1968, som Filip II i Verdis Don Carlos .

Berglund var också verksam som sångpedagog. Edith Thallaug och Gösta Winberg var några av hans elever.

Utmärkelser

Joel Berglund utnämndes till hovsångare 1943. Invaldes som ledamot nr 655 av Kungliga Musikaliska Akademien den 24 februari 1949 och tilldelades Litteris et Artibus 1950.

Metropolitan Opera

Met Performance] CID:140480
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {238}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/9/1946
Debut: Joel Berglund
Review
[Met Performance] CID:140660
Die Walküre {345}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/25/1946
[Met Performance] CID:140750
Tristan und Isolde {315}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/2/1946
Broadcast
Review
[Met Performance] CID:140790
Die Walküre {346}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 02/5/1946
[Met Performance] CID:140840
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {239}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/9/1946
Review
[Met Performance] CID:140870
Tristan und Isolde {316}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/14/1946
[Met Performance] CID:141110
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {240}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/8/1946
[Met Performance] CID:141310
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {241}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 03/26/1946
Review
[Met Performance] CID:141360
Die Walküre {347}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/30/1946
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:143080
Tristan und Isolde {318}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/20/1946
Debut: Dezsö Ernster
[Met Performance] CID:143190
Tristan und Isolde {319}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/30/1946
Broadcast
Review
[Met Performance] CID:143240
Die Walküre {350}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/5/1946
[Met Performance] CID:143320
Tristan und Isolde {320}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/13/1946
[Met Performance] CID:143410
Die Walküre {351}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/21/1946
Review
[Met Performance] CID:143580
Tristan und Isolde {321}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/4/1947
[Met Performance] CID:143600
Siegfried {203}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 01/7/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:143720 
Die Walküre {352}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/17/1947
Debut: Mihály Székely
Review
[Met Performance] CID:143770
Siegfried {204}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/22/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:144060
Siegfried {205}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/20/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:144110
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {245}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/26/1947
[Met Performance] CID:144280
Parsifal {170}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/13/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:144500 
Parsifal {171}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/2/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:144520
Parsifal {172}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/4/1947
[Met Performance] CID:146350
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {249}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/13/1947
Review
[Met Performance] CID:146580
Tristan und Isolde {326}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/3/1948
Broadcast
Review
[Met Performance] CID:146630
New production
Das Rheingold {93} Ring Cycle [77] Uncut
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/7/1948
Debut: Lee Simonson
Reviews
[Met Performance] CID:146730
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {250}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/15/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:146790
New production
Siegfried {206} Ring Cycle [77 Uncut
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/21/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:146970
Das Rheingold {94} Ring Cycle [78] Uncut
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/6/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:147020
Die Walküre {357} Ring Cycle [78] Uncut
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/10/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147140
Tristan und Isolde {328}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/20/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147270
Die Walküre {358}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 03/2/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:147350
Parsifal {173}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/10/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:147400
Tristan und Isolde {329}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/13/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147460
Siegfried {208}
Boston Opera House, Boston, Massachusetts; 03/19/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147510
Parsifal {174}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 03/23/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147530
Parsifal {175}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/24/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:147540
Parsifal {176}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/26/1948
[Met Performance] CID:147720
Die Walküre {359}
Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, California; 04/14/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:147780
Tristan und Isolde {330}
Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, California; 04/19/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149310
Die Walküre {360}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/29/1948
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149440
Die Walküre {361}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/10/1949
[Met Performance] CID:149580
Tristan und Isolde {334}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/22/1949
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149630
Siegfried {210}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/27/1949
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149660
Die Walküre {362}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/29/1949
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:149690
Siegfried {211}
American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 02/1/1949
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149720 
Gianni Schicchi {40}
Salome {25}

Metropolitan Opera House; 02/4/1949
Debuts: Ljuba Welitsch, Fritz Reiner, Reginald Tonry Jr.
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149750
Tristan und Isolde {335}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/7/1949
Review
[Met Performance] CID:149850
Die Walküre {363}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/17/1949
[Met Performance] CID:149920
Tristan und Isolde {336}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/23/1949
[Met Performance] CID:149980
Siegfried {212}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/28/1949
[Met Performance] CID:150180
Parsifal {177}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/18/1949
Review
[Met Performance] CID:150240
Gianni Schicchi {46}
Salome {31}

Boston Opera House, Boston, Massachusetts; 03/24/1949
[Met Performance] CID:150470
Parsifal {178}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/13/1949
[Met Performance] CID:150490
Parsifal {179}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/15/1949

In English

Commanding a voluminous bass-baritone of striking beauty and perfect formation for Wagner (deep pedal tones in the lower register firmly supporting a sturdy middle and finely focused upper register). Joel Berglund enjoyed considerable success in several international venues before assuming the directorship of the Stockholm Opera in his mid-forties. Berglund continued to sing in numerous productions there for another decade while guiding the fortunes of his country’s foremost opera house. Berglund ranks with the twentieth century’s foremost artists in his vocal category in addition to having been a shrewd and galvanizing singing actor.

After study at the Stockholm Conservatory with the famous baritone John Forsell, Berglund made his debut with the Stockholm Opera as Monterone (Rigoletto) in 1929. And continued as a house artist in Stockholm for the ensuing two decades. Thereafter, he combined singing with administrative responsibilities as the company’s director (1949 – 1956) and, still later, appeared regularly as a guest artist until 1964. Following appearances in America as a concert singer, the Metropolitan Opera became interested in Berglund to bolster its roster of artists capable of sustaining heroic roles in Wagner and Strauss.

Metropolitan Opera

Expected at the Metropolitan on the eve of WWII, Berglund was kept by the hostilities from his New York stage debut while the aging Friedrich Schorr was sorely tested in continuing to meet the needs of the bass-baritone wing. Berglund did sing abroad, however, making an appearance at Bayreuth in 1942 as Vanderdecken in Der fliegende Holländer.

When Berglund finally arrived at the Metropolitan as “a strong, well-detailed Sachs” in a January 9, 1946 Meistersinger, he was welcomed as an artist of the first rank. In quick succession, Berglund impressed critics and audiences alike as the Walküre Wotan and Kurwenal.

During the 1946 – 1947 season, a March 15 Parsifal enabled Berglund to prove how comfortable he was in the lower reaches of a true bass role when he sang a Gurnemanz to particular acclaim. Earlier, he sang a powerful Wanderer in Siegfried.

During the 1947 – 1948 season, a Ring cycle mounted concurrently with the Metropolitan’s first venture with Peter Grimes was strengthened considerably by Berglund’s participation, his Rheingold Wotan being singled out both for his canny portrayal of the young god and for the sovereign command he brought to his singing.

Final season

In his final season at the Metropolitan, Berglund was the Jochanaan at the February 4 debut of Ljuba Welitch in Salome, and managed not to disappear under her dramatic and vocal onslaught. Indeed, his virile singing and realization of the prophet’s fanaticism enabled the red-haired soprano to surpass herself and provide the New York house one of the most talked-about nights in its history. Just before his return to Sweden to assume the directorship in Stockholm, Berglund repeated his “excellent” Gurnemanz, thereafter leaving the Metropolitan without a leading bass-baritone until the arrival of Hans Hotter and Paul Schöffler.

While Berglund’s American career focused on Wagner and Strauss, he sang French and Italian roles in Sweden (primarily in the Swedish language). He was an insinuating Mephistopheles in Faust and a profoundly troubled Athanaël in Thaïs. In the Italian repertory, he was celebrated for his Scarpia as well as for his Simon Boccanegra and Filippo II in Don Carlo. Berglund’s stage savvy and flexible singing technique made him a notable Figaro in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro.

 

 

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