Edith Mathis, who celebrated her 80th birthday last year, is one of Lucerne's most famous "daughters". The 1960s saw her firmly establish herself on the international opera stage. She enthused audiences in New York and London, in Munich, Vienna and Paris, at Glyndebourne and Salzburg, working alongside all major conductors of her time, from Karl Böhm to Herbert von Karajan. The grace and natural charm of her iridescent, silvery soprano voice was inescapable. Mozartian roles in particular, such as Cherubino, Susanna and Pamina, found their ideal representation in Edith Mathis: she shaped the Mozart sound of her time. But her performances of the Bach passions, Haydn oratorios, as Ännchen in Weber's Der Freischütz or as Sophie in Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier were met with equal enthusiasm. She also set the benchmark as a song recitalist, including in the summer of 1975 in her home city of Lucerne.
The 28-page booklet in three languages contains a portrait of the singer by Jürgen Kesting, providing extensive information about her work in Lucerne, as well as previously unpublished photos from the festival archives.
In cooperation with audite, LUCERNE FESTIVAL presents the "Historic Performances" series featuring outstanding concert recordings of artists who have shaped the festival throughout its history. The aim of this CD edition is to rediscover treasures - most of which have not been released previously - from the first six decades of the festival. These recordings have been made available by the archives of SRF Swiss Radio and Television, which has broadcast the Lucerne concerts from the outset. Painstakingly re-mastered and supplemented with photos and materials from the LUCERNE FESTIVAL archive, they represent a sonic history of the festival.