WILLIAM WILDERMANN as Hagen by Seattle Opera published on 2014/03/24 11:43:22 +0000 William Wildermann was with Seattle Opera from before the very beginning. During the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, Wildermann sang Ramfis in the magnificent Seattle Symphony “Aida” that whet the appetite of Seattle for magnificent opera productions and opened the door to the creation of Seattle Opera. In the company’s first full season (1964/65), Wildermann sang Méphistophélès in “Faust,” Sparafucile in “Rigoletto,” and Colline in “La bohème”—the only performances Beverly Sills ever gave as Mimì. Wildermann’s quick thinking as Rocco in “Fidelio,” in 1968, saved the show, according to Glynn Ross. And when Glynn Ross lured Wildermann out of retirement, ten years later, to sing Hagen (and Hunding) in our first RINGS, he revived his career and went on to successes at the New York City Opera, Metropolitan Opera, and Dallas Opera. (His last Seattle Opera performance was Timur, in 1981—reprising a role he sang in our first “Turandot,” in 1967.) Wildermann’s white-hot intensity and artillery-like articulation are apparent from this 1976 recording of him singing Hagen’s Watch Song, resenting the easy friendship of Gunther and Siegfried. Wildermann sang his RING roles in both German and English. You sons of freedom, joyful companions, joyfully sail on your way! Though you may scorn me, you’ll serve me soon, the Nibelungen son. Andrew Porter, translation. Henry Holt conducted the Seattle Opera orchestra.