Fidelio

Ludwig van Beethoven

Fidelio

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Overview

Following a string of awe-inspiring Met performances, soprano Lise Davidsen stars as Leonore, who risks everything to save her husband from the clutches of tyranny. Tenor David Butt Philip is the political prisoner Florestan, sharing the stage with bass-baritone Tomasz Konieczny as the villainous Don Pizarro, veteran bass René Pape as the jailer Rocco, and soprano Ying Fang and tenor Magnus Dietrich, in his company debut, as the young Marzelline and Jaquino. Bass Stephen Milling sings the principled Don Fernando, and Susanna Mälkki conducts the Met’s striking production, which finds modern-day parallels in Beethoven’s stirring paean to freedom.

Please note that video cameras will be in operation during the March 12 and March 15 performances as part of the Met’s Live in HD series of cinema transmissions.

Production a gift of Alberto Vilar

Languages

Languages sung in Fidelio

Sung In

German

Titles

Title languages displayed for Fidelio

Met Titles In

  • English
  • German
  • Spanish

Timeline

Timeline for the show, Fidelio

Estimated Run Time

2 hrs 35 mins

  • House Opens

  • Act I

    75 minutes

  • Intermission

    30 mins

  • Act II

    50 mins

  • Opera Ends

Fidelio

World Premiere: Theater am Kärntnertor, Vienna, 1814
Fidelio’sunusual structure, glorious score, and life-affirming aura make it a unique experience. It has been called a hymn to freedom and human dignity. Formally a singspiel (with musical numbers separated by spoken dialogue), Fidelio had a long and complex gestation. Its uplifting spirit made it the obvious choice for several important productions marking the end of World War II, including the reopening of the Vienna State Opera in 1955.

Creators

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770–1827) was a pivotal figure in music whose orchestral, piano, and chamber works are at the center of the repertoire. He is especially known for his nine symphonies, which redefined the possibilities of the classical orchestra for all successive generations. Joseph Sonnleithner (1766–1835) was a librettist, director, and the secretary of the Vienna court theaters.

PRODUCTION

Jürgen Flimm

SET DESIGNER

Robert Israel

COSTUME DESIGNER

Florence von Gerkan

LIGHTING DESIGNER

Duane Schuler

Headshot of Ludwig van Beethoven

Composer

Ludwig van Beethoven

Setting

Fidelio

The opera is set in Seville toward the end of the 18th century, during the time of political upheaval following the French Revolution. The Met’s production places the action in an unspecified contemporary setting.

Music

The powerful and innovative use of the orchestra found throughout Fidelio is not surprising from Beethoven. Likewise, the chorus’s evocative music is expected from the composer of such notable choral works as the Missa Solemnis and the triumphant choral finale of Ninth Symphony. Yet some of the score’s greatest surprises and pleasures derive from solo and ensemble vocal writing. Beethoven creates hierarchies among his characters, from the earthly to the exalted, which are instantly recognizable in their music.

Fidelio