Karl Schmitt-Walter

Schmitt-Walter always sounds like a German baryton-martin, but that's only due to his timbre, not to his vocal range; after all, his most famous role besides Rossini's Figaro was Don Giovanni. So he was in fact no semi-tenor, and all his recordings of tenor repertory are transposed.

They're excellent nonetheless; if the librettos of the two Zeller operettas were just not in Tyrolese dialect... Schmitt-Walter, Palatine by birth, Bavarian by upbringing and Berliner by decades of professional engagement, had a decidedly un-Tyrolese German diction, and while he maintains an acceptable level of artificial Tyrolese in the Vogelhändler selection, he's right out of it in the Obersteiger waltz, where his attempts at singing "Pfiat di Gott" (Tyrolese for bye-bye) arouse pity. But the singing in and of itself is exemplary.

Karl Schmitt-Walter sings Der Obersteiger: Sei nicht bös'

Karl Schmitt-Walter sings Der Vogelhändler: Wia mei Ahnl zwanzig Jahr'

Karl Schmitt-Walter sings Eine Nacht in Venedig: Komm in die Gondel
I with to thank Anton Bieber for the Nacht in Venedig recording.

Many thanks to Michael Schmitt-Walter for the information on where his father grew up.

Find Schmitt-Walter in his usual repertory here (scroll down to Tannhäuser).

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