Personalities | Joseph Tichatschek | High Romantic | Opera

1807–86, Bohemian

The Bohemian tenor Joseph Tichatschek made his debut at the Kärntnertor Theatre in Vienna in 1833, as the farmer, Raimbaut, in Meyerbeer’s Robert le diable. After a year, 1837, at Graz, Tichatschek found a regular berth at Dresden, where he sang between 1838 and 1870. He also performed at the Drury Lane Theatre in London in 1841. Tichatschek was not impressive as an actor, but his impassioned singing, brilliant tone and heroic stage presence made him much admired by Berlioz, Liszt, Otto Nicolai (1810–49) and Wagner, who wrote of his ‘lively nature, glorious voice and great musical ability’. Tictatschek created two important title roles for Wagner, in Rienzi and Tannhäuser. In total contrast, Tichatschek was also adept at Mozart roles. He sang the title part in Idomeneo and the Javanese prince Tamino in Die Zauberflöte.

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