Working together with Ferenc Fricsay
What amazed me most was Ferenc Fricsay’s intuitive rela-tionship to the vocal. It isn’t presumptuous in this case, to talk about a sixth sense, so perfect was his empathy for the human voice. He went as far as to give us valuable advice, although he had never had any training as a singer nor had he ever studied the complicated physiological process of singing. His advice helped me personally on my way and it helped other singers as well.
For him, music was absolutely fundamental. That was why the mere word “routine” was hateful to him, to say nothing of a routine singer or a lethargic routine orchestra. Situations like these made him totally helpless; he felt personally insulted and his beloved music violated. In such occasional moments of clashes with his colleagues he forgot diplomacy and flew into a rage. “You don’t care at all about music", he once snapped at a colleague, “you only sing notes!” In these matters he would not accept a compro-mise.
In rehearsals that didn’t turn out to his satisfaction or when he felt opposition, he was driven to desperation. He needed mutual response, attention, an echo for his intentions. Once this echo was created, he was able to lead his colleagues to the highest levels of accomplishments.
(famous Swiss soprano)