Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Oct 22, 2018

Carl Jöken (Tenor) (Krefeld, Germany 3. November 1893 - Hamburg, Germany 7. April 1971)

First he studied chemistry and from 1914 to 1918 as a soldier took in the First World War. Without proper vocal studies he made his debut in 1918 at the Stadttheater of Krefeld as Manrico in "Trovatore". In the 1920-1923 seasons he was a soloist of the Stadttheater in Freiburg i. Br., Since 1923 he appeared at the Berlin Staatsoper. Here he sang the parts of Pinkerton in "Madame Butterfly" and Eisenstein in "Fledermaus" and also participated in the Berlin premiere of  L. Janáček’s  "Jenufa" (1924). Although he had in his repertoire roles such as Tamino in "Zauberflöte", Rodolfo in "La Bohème" and Cavaradossi in "Tosca", but he gladly took over also buffo roles like Pedrillo in "Entführung aus dem Serail", Don Curzio and Basilio in "Figaros Hochzeit", David in "Meistersingern"and Mime in the Ring Cycle. In 1928 he appeared at the Berlin State Opera in the world premiere of Franz Schreker's "Der singende Teufel". Until 1934 he remained a member of the Berlin State Opera. During this time he also appeared at the Berlin Kroll Opera, u.a. 1927 in the world premiere of "Royal Palace" by Kurt Weill. He later turned mainly to the operetta, after he had tremendous successes in 1930 at the Metropol Theater in Berlin in Millacker's "Bettelstudent" and in the premiere of "Das Veilchen vom Montmartre"  by Kalmán. In 1930 he sang in Amsterdam in "Fledermaus" under Bruno Walter, the same performance was repeated at the Covent Garden Opera in London. In the 1931-1932 season he worked at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, especially in buffo repertoire, and worked there in 1931 in the premiere of Stravinsky's "Oedipus Rex". Since 1933 he had a huge successes at the Berlin Theater of the West in operettas such as "Die lockende Flamme" by Künnecke (world premiere on 27. 12. 1933), "Der Page dsr Königs" (1933) and "Der goldene Pierrot"  by Walter W.Goetze. The career of the singer took a long time, even in 1956 he sang at the Hamburg Operetta Theater. Married the actress and cabaret artist Käthe König. With his second wife Edith Schollwer, who performed in operettas, he made a few records on Electrola.

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