This 50-CD set is released to mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Richard Wagner, and is an outstanding sound document of the history of the Bayreuth Festival during the first half of the 20th century. The collection includes music from all operas authorised by Wagner for performance in Bayreuth. To complement the edition, scenes and solo titles out of the decades of the festival direction of Cosima, Siegfried and Winifred Wagner are included. They go back to the festival summer of 1904 and communicate impressions from important and famous performances until 1943.
Recordings from New Bayreuth of the Wagner grandsons Wieland and Wolfgang lead to the newest era of the festival. All performances on the 50 CDs are original recordings from Bayreuth and are directed by Siegfried Wagner, Richard Strauss, Wilhelm Furtwängler, Victor de Sabata, Karl Muck, Herbert von Karajan, Clemens Krauss, Joseph Keilberth, Hans Knappertsbusch, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Lorin Maazel and André Cluytens – a role call of some of the 20th century’s greatest conductors.