It's his birthday - James Morris

James Morris - Wotan
A favourite with audiences worldwide, the Met in particular over the last forty or so years, Bass-Baritone James Morris celebrates his birthday today.  With a career including the operas of Mozart, Verdi, Rossini, Puccini, and Wagner, it is perhaps for one role he is now synonymous with, that of Wotan, King of the Gods, from Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen.

His highly intelligent, gorgeously sung performance is forever preserved in the Otto Schenk production for the Metropolitan Opera in the 80's, fortunately on both film and disc formats.  He also recorded the role for EMI under the conductor Bernard Haitink.  I have both recordings (and DVD) and must say that of all the late Twentieth Century 'Wotans' he rates as possibly the best.

Below is the great Farewell from the conclusion of Die Walkure, from the Metropolitan Opera as tribute to a great singer.  Happy birthday James Morris.