Personalities | Ludwig Schnorr von Carolsfeld | High Romantic | Opera

1836–65, German

After making his debut at Karlsruhe in 1854, playing small roles, Ludwig Schnorr von Carolsfeld attracted Wagner’s attention, who considered his dramatically powerful voice ideal for tenor roles in his operas. Schnorr von Carolsfeld created a sensation as Lohengrin and another as Tannhäuser. When Tristan und Isolde premiered in Munich on 10 June 1865, Schnorr von Carolsfeld created the role of Tristan. Six weeks later, on 21 July, the tenor died suddenly in Dresden. Wagner was profoundly upset, as was the tenor’s wife, the Danish soprano Malvina Garrigues (1825–1904), who had created the part of Isolde. Garrigues could not face continuing in opera without him, and retired soon after he died.

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