Fidelio (also named Leonore or The Triumph of Married Love) is a German opera with spoken dialogue in two acts by Ludwig van Beethoven. It is his only opera, which premiere was performed in Vienna 1806 titled Leonore, and 1814 as Fidelio.
Shortly the opera tells how Leonore, disguised as a prison guard named “Fidelio”, rescues her husband Florestan from death in a political prison. Bouilly’s scenario fits Beethoven’s aesthetic and political outlook: a story of personal sacrifice, heroism and eventual triumph (the usual topics of Beethoven’s “middle period”) with its underlying struggle for liberty and justice mirroring contemporary political movements in Europe. The success of these performances was hindered by the fact that Vienna was under French military occupation, and most of the audience were French military officers. That what disturbs is pure music, Beethoven with his “nostalgia of liberty”.
The Volksoper is Vienna’s main stage for operetta, opera, musicals and ballet, offering sophisticated musical entertainment. Colourful, eclectic and full of vitality, it is the only theatre dedicated to the genre of operetta.
Also performed are operas from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, as well as classic musicals and ballet. In addition, the Volksoper has a fifth longstanding and proven speciality: it stages soirées, cabaret and burlesque performances under the name of “Volksoper Spezial”.
Why did I choose this performance on 25th of March? Actually I didn’t.
It was my daughter’s SMS that said: “Dear Mum, best wishes for the upcoming Mother’s day – two tickets are waiting for you at Volksoper Wien.” I thought, how precious she is, thoughtful and good with internet (purchasing presents).
No! No! It all began one cold winter day in Obertauern, Austria. Roy Cornelius Smith, an Opera singer was standing in front of my daughter in the middle of the slope wondering: “Is this young girl really going to teach me how to ski? Well lets see.”