The Wagner Journal

Derek Hughes, New Witnesses of Toscanini’s Bayreuth

Derek Hughes, New Witnesses of Toscanini’s Bayreuth

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March 2023, Volume 17, Number 1, 45–54.

Many readers of The Wagner Journal will take pleasure in collecting old books and scores with Wagnerian associations. With such books come, often, the half-glimpsed ghosts of their original owners, whose faded names persist on the flyleaves and title-pages. There is the ‘Schubert’ – not, I fear, Franz – who once owned my first edition of Peter von Winter’s Das unterbrochene Opferfest. There is Robert Ewald Zapp, a bibliophilic SS officer who owned a book on Wagner by the half-Jewish scholar Felix Gross: a book that hailed Wagner as the precursor of Tagore and Gandhi, and as heralding a translatio studii from West to East. There are the two girls who, in about 1920, thought Theodor Fritsch’s poisonous Handbuch der Judenfrage a suitable present for their stenography teacher. And there are Willi and Margarete Paubel of Suhl.

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