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Inaugurations: Beethoven's Fidelio at the Fenice in Venice, conducted by Myung-Whun Chung
The only opera written by Beethoven opens the 2021-22 season

La Fenice Theater Foundation Presents

The Venetian Theater opens with Fidelio, the only opera composed by Beethoven - a doubly significant choice, which on the one hand honors the Master of Bonn by recovering the homage for the 250th anniversary canceled by the pandemic, and on the other emphasizes the longing for liberation in a spirit of brotherhood, the main theme of Fidelio, as pointed out by the Superintendent Fortunato Ortombina. "... Fidelio is the work of liberation par excellence. We all see each other as prisoners in this pandemic period. Of prisoners who feel the desire for liberation. "

The opera will be staged in a new staging of La Fenice, with the musical direction by Myung-Whun Chung and the directed by Joan Anton Rechi. In the main roles of the cast, Ian Koziara (Florestan), Tilmann Rönnebeck (Rocco) and Tamara Wilson (Leonore).

Unicum in Beethoven's production, Fidelio it went through a complex process before assuming its final form, the result of cuts, revisions and modifications. There are in fact three versions of the work, from the first in 1805, to the second of the following year, to reach the final form in 1814. The first two versions made their debut with poor acclaim in Vienna at the Theater an der Wien, both with the title 'Leonora or marital love". The third rewrite, this time with the title 'Fidelio'and the famous baritone Johann Michael Vogl in the role of Don Pizarro, was staged on May 23, 1814 at the Teatro di Porta Carinzia, finally enjoying the desired success.

The plot tells of an unjustly incarcerated man, Florestan, who is freed by his wife Leonore, who entered his place of detention in the male guise of Fidelio. The subject, well known at the time, is taken from the French drama 'Léonore ou amour conjugal' from Jean-Nicolas Boully represented in 1798 with music by Pierre Gaveaux, text which in the same years they drew Ferdinand Paër (Leonora, Dresden 1804) and John Simone Mayr (Marital love, Padua 1805).

It was part of a very popular genre in France and Germany in those years, the pièce à sauvetage, in which the positive heroes representing the forces of good, after having suffered unjust persecutions, triumph at the end of an adventurous plot, finding salvation from serious danger thanks to a providential twist.

If the first draft of the text set to music by Beethoven was by the hand of the librettist, theater director and archivist Joseph Sonnleithner (Vienna 1766 - 1835), the definitive version of the libretto is due to Georg Friedrich Treitschke (Leipzig 1766 - Vienna 1842, librettist, playwright and entomologist, director of the Theater an der Wien from 1809 to 1814) who at the request of the composer himself revised the work, making the theatrical plot more stringent.

In this last version Beethoven fully developed themes dear to him such as the dialectic between good and evil, between justice and tyranny, and the final triumph of Reason and Love, enhancing them with music with epic contents.


Fidelio will be on stage with another staging also at the Maggio Fiorentino from 28 December 2021 to 7 January 2022
Inaugurations: Beethoven's Fidelio at the Fenice in Venice, conducted by Myung-Whun Chung


Don Pizzarro, Oliver Zwarg
Florestan, Ian Koziara
Leonore, Tamara Wilson
Rocco, Tilmann Rönnebeck
Jaquino, Leonardo Cortellazzi
Marzelline, Ekaterina Bakanova

Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro La Fenice

Director Myung-Whun Chung

Directed by Joan Anton Rechi

Scenes Gabriel Insignares

Sebastian Ellrich Costumes

Fabio Barettin lights



Opera in two acts by Ludwig van Beethoven

libretto by Joseph Sonnleithner and Georg Friedrich Treitschke
from Léonore ou l'ou conjugal by Jean-Nicolas Bouilly


November 24
November 28

Who organizes

Author: Sabine Frantellizzi

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