Opera Scotland

Rosenkavalier 1974Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Rosenkavalier

After the Edinburgh Festival Alceste, with its brief excursion to Aldeburgh, Scottish Opera's autumn tour in 1974 centred on the first revival of the 1971 Der Rosenkavalier using the Scottish National Orchestra, and being sung this time in German.  The Scottish Chamber Orchestra played in further performances of Elegy for Young Lovers and The Magic Flute.  With the addition of some more players the SCO became the Scottish Philharmonia, who were in the pit for the new production, Lucia di Lammermoor.  The tour took in Glasgow, Leeds, Newcastle and Aberdeen.

In October, a strongly cast reviv al of The Barber of Seville was taken to Stirling and Ayr.  Then in December the company played in Edinburgh, when Rosenkavalier and Lucia were supplemented by a revival of La bohème, not seen since 1967.

This was the  first revival of the outstandingly memorable Strauss staging.  From now on it was sung in German, and the linch-pin of every performance was the great characterisation of Ochs by Michael Langdon, who had sung the role over 100 times at Covent Garden, as well as at Vienna, Paris, the Met, and most of the major German houses.  Helga Dernesch returned as the Marschallin, with an equally elegant Catherine Wilson taking over at Christmas.  The excellent new Octavian was Anne Howells (except for the final performance, when she had a sprained ankle and the current Salzburg incumbent was flown in - surely an indication of the production's reputation).  The revival was directed by David Pountney, who had been Anthony Besch’s assistant in 1971.

The programme indicated that and excellent Swedish soprano, Birgit Nordin, sang Sophie in the autumn.  Eventually three sopranos appeared in the role, but we still need confirmation of specific dates other than those shown, which come from programmes.

This was the series of performances of which extracts were recorded by EMI for release on Classics for Pleasure.  Helga Dernesch,  Anne Howells and Teresa Cahill appear, with a tantalising glimpse of the wonderful Langdon as Ochs.

Performance Cast

Feldmarschallin Marie-Therese, Princess of Werdenberg (the Field-Marshal's wife)

Helga Dernesch (Sep; Oct)

Catherine Wilson (Dec)

Octavian Count Rofrano

Anne Howells (Exc Dec 12)

Trudeliese Schmidt (Dec 12)

Page to the Marschallin

Konuhen Akauny

First Footman

Peter Bodenham

Second Footman

James Paterson

Third Footman

Michael Royle

Fourth Footman

David Scrivens

Ochs Baron Ochs auf Lerchenau

Michael Langdon

Major- domo to the Marschallin

Frederick Donaldson

Noble Widow

Margaret Aronson

First Noble Orphan

Elizabeth Ritchie

Second Noble Orphan

Morag MacKay

Third Noble Orphan

Joyce McCrindle


Enid Bannatyne

Animal Seller

David Fieldsend


Richard Evans 2


Tano Rea


Norman White


David Conyers

Kitchen Boy

Campbell Hughes


Forrester Pyke


Derek Blackwell

Flute Player

John Brackenridge

Valzacchi an intriguer

John Robertson

Annina Valzacchi's accomplice

Claire Livingstone

Leopold Baron Ochs' bastard son

Gordon Sandison

Faninal Herr von Faninal, a rich merchant

Thomas Hemsley

Sophie Sophie von Faninal, his daughter

Teresa Cahill

Glenys Fowles (Sep 18; Dec 12)

Birgit Nordin (Oct 7)

Marianne Marianne Leitmetzerin, Sophie's duenna

Judith Pierce

Major-domo to Faninal

David Fieldsend

First Follower in Baron Ochs' retinue

Gerald Blakely

Second Follower

Anthony Feltham

Third Follower

Garrick Forbes

Fourth Follower

Arthur Jackson

Fifth Follower

Ian McKinven

Notary's Clerk

Peter Bodenham


Norman White


David Fieldsend

First Waiter

Malcolm Aitken

Second Waiter

Gerald Blakely

Third Waiter

Ian McKinven

Fourth Waiter

David Scrivens

Commissioner of Police

Malcolm Donnelly

Performance DatesRosenkavalier 1974

Map List

King's Theatre, Glasgow | Glasgow

10 Sep, 18.30 12 Sep, 18.30

Grand Theatre, Leeds | Leeds

18 Sep, 18.30 20 Sep, 18.30

Theatre Royal, Newcastle | Newcastle-upon-Tyne

28 Sep, 18.30 30 Sep, 18.30

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

7 Oct, 18.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

10 Dec, 18.30 12 Dec, 18.30

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