Opera - Fidelio

The 2001 production of Fidelio at Glyndebourne under Deborah Warner’s direction was heralded as the ‘must see’ of the year by The Independent. It is revived at Glyndebourne this season with Warner in the driving seat once again, accompanied by two of the most prolific conductors of our time on the podium – Mark Elder and Edward Gardner. They will conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra, in separate performances, in this acclaimed production of Beethoven’s only opera. In a nutshell, Fidelio tells the story of Lenore, the courageous wife, who dresses as a man to become ‘Fidelio’ in an attempt to save the life of her imprisoned husband Florestan. He is a political prisoner, who has been jailed illegally for over two years and is being slowly starved to death. The climax of the opera comes when Lenore prevents her husband’s execution, reveals her true identity, and they are ecstatically reunited.

Dark and oppressive prison scenes are the order of the day and if some critics found Warner’s set a bit too messy or grungy first time round they may do so again. Famously committed to liberty and freedom as Beethoven was, this opera could have been set in any period of our history, and indeed echoes of Guantanomo Bay resound for a modern audience. Lenore/Fidelio is powerfully played by the German soprano Anja Kampe, and Florestan is played by the German tenor Torsten Kerl. KA

Glyndebourne: Returns can be had for as little as £25
De Montfort Road, Lewes
When? 11am-2pm
When? sold out returns on the day as little as £25.

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