Martti Talvela impressive bass 1935-1989

Martti Talvela Finnish bass 1935-

Martti Talvela is born in Hiitola, Finland (now in the Republic of Karelia), the eighth of ten children he studied in Lahti and Stockholm, and made his operatic debut in Helsinki in 1960 as Sparafucile. He trained as a boxer in his youth and developed the stamina necessary for the biggest roles. Originally Martti Talvela was educated as a primary school teacher in Savonlinna, Eastern Finland (1952–1956), and he worked in that occupation at three schools (1957–1960). Martti Talvela sang at the Stockholm Royal Opera in Sweden from 1961 to 1962, before becoming a regularly employed singer at the Deutsche Oper of Berlin in 1962, the same year as his debut at Bayreuth.

Martti Talvela impressive bass 1935-1989

In 1970, the Senate (government) of West Berlin formally granted him the rank of Kammersänger. Martti Talvela was especially acclaimed as the title character in Boris Godunov, a role he performed 39 times at the Metropolitan Opera between 1974 and 1987, and as Pimen from the same work, as Paavo Ruotsalainen in The Last Temptations, as a Wagnersinger who frequently performed at Bayreuth (King Marke, Hunding, Fasolt, Fafner, Hagen (one critic described his Hagen as an ”elemental force”) and Titurel), as the Commendatore, Sarastro, Dosefei, and Prince Gremin, as King Phillip II, the Grand Inquisitor and, in the later part of his career, the title character in Glinka’s Ivan Susanin.

As Martti Talvela final record he left, terribly thinned out by illness, a warm and heartfelt version of Schubert’s Winterreise. He also left at least two recorded performances of Mussorgsky’s Songs and Dances of Death – one with full orchestraand one with piano accompaniment.

Martti Talvela possessed a ”voice of immense size and wide range” and was able to bring to his roles a combination of both ”grandeur and gentleness”. A large man, 6′ 7″ tall and weighing nearly 300 pounds,he was a fine vocal actor who brought an air of dignity to his roles, even to pure-evil roles like Hagen and the Grand Inquisitor.

Martti Talvela can be seen performing on video as Boris Godunov, as Sarastro, as Osmin, as the Grand Inquisitor (in German) and as Don Fernando, and in the CBS special Beethoven’s Birthday: A Celebration in Vienna, released on DVD as Bernstein on Beethoven: A Celebration in Vienna.

Martti Talvela was the first artistic leader of the Savonlinna Opera Festival in Finland, from 1972 to 1979, and had been appointed general director of the National Opera in Helsinki just before his death.

During the last eight years of his life (1981 to 1989), he worked as a farmer on the Inkilänhovi (Inkilä manor) farm in Juva, Eastern Finland, while continuing his official career as an opera singer. His health had begun to decline in 1975, when he was diagnosed with diabetes and gout. In 1982 alone, he suffered two heart attacks at the Metropolitan Opera. Stomach problems also plagued him at times in the 1980s.
Martti Talvela died of a heart attack at age 54 while dancing at his daughter’s wedding in Juva.n

På svenskah

Martti Talvela var folkskollärare innan han började ta sånglektioner i Lahtis och Stockholm.Han debuterade 1960 på Finlands Nationalopera som Sparafucile i Rigoletto och kom efter två år på operan i Stockholm till Deutsche Oper Berlin,där han sjöng till sin död. Från 1962 var han en ofta förekommande gäst i Bayreuth där han bl.a. sjöng Hunding och Fasolt i Nibelungens ring,kung Marke i Tristan och Isolde och Titurel i Parsifal, men han var också efterfrågad i Verdi partier och sjöng storinkvisitorn i Don Carlos vid sin debut på Metropolitan och Filip II i samma opera i Moskva och Leningrad.

Ett annat av hans glanspartier var Boris Godunov,som han kreerade bl.a på Grand Opéra i Paris,och Dosifej i Musorgskijs Hovansjtjina. Rollen som Pavo Ruotsalainen i Kokkonens De sista frestelserna skrevs för honom. Han ledde festspelen i Savonlinna 1972-77 och framträdde också där. Under hans ledning fördes festspelen upp på internationell nivå samtidigt som de ökade operaintresset i Finland.

Bayreuther Festspiele

1962-70

Metropolitan Opera

[Met Performance] CID:216210
Don Carlo {74}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/7/1968
Debut: Martti Talvela, Claudio Abbado
Review
[Met Performance] CID:216270
Don Carlo {75}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/12/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216330
Don Carlo {76}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/19/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216370
Don Carlo {77}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/23/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216450
Die Walküre {409}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/31/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216500
Die Walküre {410}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/5/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216530
Die Walküre {411}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/8/1968
Debut: Hildegard Hillebrecht
[Met Performance] CID:216540
Don Carlo {78}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/9/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216590
Don Carlo {79}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/14/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216640
Don Carlo {80}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/19/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216680
New production
Das Rheingold {103}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/22/1968
Debuts: Josephine Veasey, Zoltán Kelemen, Gerhard Stolze, Simone Mangelsdorff, Donald Grobe, Edda Moser, Anna Reynolds
Review
[Met Performance] CID:216710
Das Rheingold {104}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/25/1968
[Met Performance] CID:216770
Das Rheingold {105}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/30/1968
[Met Performance] CID:217610  Opera News
Das Rheingold {106}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/22/1969
Debut: Liselotte Rebmann
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:217640
Das Rheingold {107}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/25/1969
[Met Performance] CID:217680  Opera News
Die Walküre {413}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/1/1969
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:220000
Aida {762}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/29/1969
Opening Night {85}
Rudolf Bing, General Manager
The opening of the 1969-70 season was delayed and the season nearly cancelled due to prolonged labor-management negotiations
Review
[Met Performance] CID:239910 
New Production
Boris Godunov {171}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/16/1974
An adapted version of the original Mussorgsky orchestration was used for this production.
Review
[Met Performance] CID:240010
Boris Godunov {172}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/26/1974
[Met Performance] CID:240050
Boris Godunov {173}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/30/1974
[Met Performance] CID:240110
Boris Godunov {174}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/4/1975
[Met Performance] CID:240130
Boris Godunov {175}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/7/1975
[Met Performance] CID:240190
Boris Godunov {176}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/13/1975
[Met Performance] CID:240290
Boris Godunov {177}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/22/1975
[Met Performance] CID:240330
Boris Godunov {178}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/25/1975
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:240390
Boris Godunov {179}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/31/1975
[Met Performance] CID:243020
Boris Godunov {184}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/14/1975
Review
[Met Performance] CID:243960
Boris Godunov {192}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/16/1976
[Met Performance] CID:244040
Boris Godunov {193}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/24/1976
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:248420
La Forza del Destino {177}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/25/1977
[Met Performance] CID:248510
La Forza del Destino {178}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/5/1977
[Met Performance] CID:248540
La Forza del Destino {179}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/8/1977
[Met Performance] CID:248580  Opera News
La Forza del Destino {180}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/12/1977
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:248620
La Forza del Destino {181}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/16/1977
[Met Performance] CID:248660
La Forza del Destino {182}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/19/1977
[Met Concert/Gala] CID:251000
Met Marathon
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/6/1977
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:251010
Boris Godunov {194}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/10/1977
Opening Night {93}
Anthony A. Bliss, General Manager
Debuts: Florence Quivar, Vern Shinall, Robert Sapolsky
[Met Performance] CID:251040
Boris Godunov {195}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/13/1977
[Met Performance] CID:251070
Eugene Onegin {39}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/15/1977
Debuts: Isola Jones, Ray Diffen
Review
[Met Performance] CID:251080
Boris Godunov {196}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/17/1977
Debut: James Atherton
[Met Performance] CID:251110
Eugene Onegin {40}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/20/1977
[Met Performance] CID:251130
Boris Godunov {197}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/22/1977
[Met Performance] CID:251180
Boris Godunov {198}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/27/1977
[Met Performance] CID:251200
Eugene Onegin {42}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/29/1977
Review
[Met Performance] CID:251230
Boris Godunov {199}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/1/1977
[Met Performance] CID:251250
Eugene Onegin {43}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/3/1977
[Met Performance] CID:252300
Boris Godunov {200}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/10/1978
[Met Performance] CID:252350
Boris Godunov {201}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/15/1978
[Met Performance] CID:252420
Boris Godunov {202}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/22/1978
[Met Performance] CID:252450
Boris Godunov {203}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/25/1978
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:252480
Boris Godunov {204}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/28/1978
[Met Performance] CID:252530
Boris Godunov {205}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/4/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255380
New production
The Bartered Bride {58}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/25/1978
Debuts: Alan Crofoot, Pavel Smok
Review
[Met Performance] CID:255430
The Bartered Bride {59}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/30/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255470
The Bartered Bride {60}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/3/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255500
The Bartered Bride {61}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/6/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255550
The Bartered Bride {62}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/11/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255600
The Bartered Bride {63}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/16/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255630
The Bartered Bride {64}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/18/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255650 
The Bartered Bride {65}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/21/1978
Broadcast / Telecast
[Met Performance] CID:255700
The Bartered Bride {66}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/25/1978
Debut: Patricia Craig
[Met Performance] CID:255730
The Bartered Bride {67}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/29/1978
[Met Performance] CID:255760 Opera News
The Bartered Bride {68}
Metropolitan Opera House; 12/2/1978
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:257010
Parsifal {228}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/2/1979
Review
[Met Performance] CID:257080
Parsifal {229}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/6/1979
[Met Performance] CID:257120
Parsifal {230}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/10/1979
Review
[Met Performance] CID:257160  Opera News
Parsifal {231}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/14/1979
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:266530 
Die Zauberflöte {247}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/5/1981
Debut: Thomas Allen
[Met Performance] CID:266580
Die Zauberflöte {248}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/10/1981
[Met Performance] CID:266610
Die Zauberflöte {249}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/13/1981
[Met Performance] CID:266660
Die Zauberflöte {250}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/18/1981
[Met Performance] CID:266690
Die Zauberflöte {251}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/21/1981
[Met Performance] CID:266720
Die Zauberflöte {252}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/24/1981
Debut: Stephen Dickson
[Met Performance] CID:266750
Die Zauberflöte {253}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/27/1981
[Met Performance] CID:267970
Die Entführung aus dem Serail {17}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/22/1982
Reviews
[Met Performance] CID:268030
Die Entführung aus dem Serail {18}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/26/1982
[Met Performance] CID:268090
Die Entführung aus dem Serail {19}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/31/1982
[Met Performance] CID:268120
Die Entführung aus dem Serail {20}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/3/1982
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:270010
Boris Godunov {213}
Metropolitan Opera House; 09/21/1982
Debut: Darren Nimnicht
[Met Performance] CID:270040
Boris Godunov {214}
Metropolitan Opera House; 09/24/1982
[Met Performance] CID:270070
Boris Godunov {215}
Metropolitan Opera House; 09/27/1982
[Met Performance] CID:270110
Boris Godunov {216}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/1/1982
[Met Performance] CID:270160
Boris Godunov {217}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/6/1982
[Met Performance] CID:270200
Boris Godunov {218}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/9/1982
[Met Performance] CID:270280
Boris Godunov {219}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/16/1982
[Met Performance] CID:271300
Boris Godunov {220}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/20/1983
[Met Performance] CID:271380
Boris Godunov {221}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/25/1983
[Met Performance] CID:271420
Boris Godunov {222}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/29/1983
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:275020
Tristan und Isolde {427}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/3/1984
Debut: Lorna Myers
[Met Performance] CID:275070
Tristan und Isolde {428}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/7/1984
[Met Performance] CID:275100
Tristan und Isolde {429}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/11/1984
Debut: Anthony Raffell
[Met Performance] CID:275140
Tristan und Isolde {430}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/14/1984
[Met Concert/Gala] CID:275220
Talvela – Levine Recital
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/22/1984
[Met Performance] CID:282210
New Production
Khovanshchina {5}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/14/1985
Debuts: Helga Dernesch, John Conklin
Shostakovich orchestration
Review
[Met Performance] CID:282270
Khovanshchina {6}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/19/1985
[Met Performance] CID:282300
Khovanshchina {7}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/23/1985
[Met Performance] CID:282340
Khovanshchina {8}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/26/1985
[Met Performance] CID:282360
Khovanshchina {9}
Metropolitan Opera House; 10/29/1985
Review
[Met Performance] CID:282470
Khovanshchina {12}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/9/1985
[Met Performance] CID:282520
Khovanshchina {13}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/14/1985
[Met Performance] CID:282560
Khovanshchina {14}
Metropolitan Opera House; 11/18/1985
[Met Performance] CID:283220
Khovanshchina {15}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/24/1986
[Met Performance] CID:283250
Khovanshchina {16}
Metropolitan Opera House; 01/27/1986
[Met Performance] CID:283300
Khovanshchina {17}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/1/1986
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:283980
Parsifal {251}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/10/1986
Debuts: Kathryn Harries, Gary Bachlund
[Met Performance] CID:284030
Parsifal {252}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/14/1986
Debut: Gail Gilmore
[Met Performance] CID:284090
Parsifal {253}
Metropolitan Opera House; 04/19/1986
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:287540
Boris Godunov {231}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/23/1987
[Met Performance] CID:287580
Boris Godunov {232}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/27/1987
[Met Performance] CID:287610
Boris Godunov {233}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/2/1987
[Met Performance] CID:287650
Boris Godunov {234}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/6/1987
Review
[Met Performance] CID:287680
Boris Godunov {235}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/9/1987
[Met Performance] CID:287730
Boris Godunov {236}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/14/1987
Broadcast
[Met Performance] CID:287780
Boris Godunov {237}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/19/1987
Review
[Met Performance] CID:291560
Khovanshchina {18}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/22/1988
Debuts: Stefania Toczyska, Timothy Noble, Elizabeth Knighton
[Met Performance] CID:291600
Khovanshchina {19}
Metropolitan Opera House; 02/26/1988
[Met Performance] CID:291640
Khovanshchina {20}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/1/1988
[Met Performance] CID:291670
Khovanshchina {21}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/4/1988
[Met Performance] CID:291720
Khovanshchina {22}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/9/1988
[Met Performance] CID:291760
Khovanshchina {23}
Metropolitan Opera House; 03/12/1988

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