Salzburg Festival: FIDELIO – BEETHOVEN

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Act I

 

Jaquino and Marzelline are alone in Rocco’s house. Jaquino asks Marzelline when she will agree to marry him, but she says that she will never marry him now that she has fallen in love with Fidelio. She is unaware that Fidelio is actually Leonore in disguise. Jaquino leaves and Marzelline expresses her desire to become Fidelio’s wife Rocco enters, looking for Fidelio. Fidelio enters carrying a heavy load of newly repaired chains. Rocco compliments Fidelio, and misinterprets her modest reply as hidden attraction to his daughter. Marzelline, Leonore, Rocco, and Jaquino sing a quartet about the love Marzelline has for Fidelio.

 

Rocco tells Leonore that as soon as the governor has left for Seville, she and Marzelline can be married. He tells them, however, that unless they have money, they will not be happy. Leonore says that she wants something else at least as much as money: to know why Rocco will not permit her to help him in the dungeons, because he always comes back out of breath. Rocco says that there is a prison where he can never take her, and inside is a man who has wasted away for two years because of his powerful enemies. Marzelline begs her father to keep Leonore away from such a terrible sight. Instead Rocco and Leonore sing of courage, and soon Marzelline joins in their acclamations.

 

All but Rocco leave. A march is played as Pizarro enters with guards. Rocco gives Pizarro a message with a warning that the minister plans a surprise visit tomorrow to investigate accusations that Pizarro is a tyrant. Pizarro exclaims that he cannot let the minister discover the imprisoned Don Florestan, who has been thought dead. Instead, Pizarro will murder Florestan. Pizarro orders that a trumpet be sounded at the minister’s arrival. He offers Rocco money to kill Florestan, but Rocco refuses, and instead Pizarro orders him to dig a grave in the ruined well in the dungeons. When the grave is ready, Rocco should sound the alarm. Pizarro will then come disguised into the dungeon, and kill Florestan himself. Leonore has seen Pizarro plotting. She is agitated, but thoughts of her husband calm her down.

 

Jaquino begs Marzelline to marry him, but she refuses. Leonore, hoping to find Florestan, asks Rocco to let the poor prisoners roam in the garden and enjoy the beautiful weather. Marzelline also begs him, and Rocco agrees to distract Pizarro while the prisoners are set free. The prisoners, overjoyed at their freedom, sing joyfully, but, remembering that they could be caught, are soon quiet.

 

Rocco reenters and tells Leonore of his success with Pizarro: Pizarro will allow the marriage, and Leonore will be permitted to join Rocco on his rounds in the dungeon. They prepare to go to the cell of a prisoner who, says Rocco, must be killed and buried within the hour. Leonore is so shaken that Rocco tries to persuade her to stay behind, but she insists on coming. As they prepare to leave, Jaquino and Marzelline rush in and tell Rocco to run: Pizarro has learned that the prisoners are free, and he is furious.

 

Before they can move, Pizarro enters and demands an explanation. Rocco pretends that they are celebrating the King’s naming day, and suggests quietly that Pizarro save his anger for the prisoner in the dungeons below. Pizarro tells him to hurry and dig the grave, then announces that the prisoners will be shut in again. Rocco, Leonore, Jacquino, and Marzelline reluctantly usher the prisoners back to their cells.

 

 

Act II

 

Florestan is alone in his cell, deep inside the dungeons. He sings first of his trust in God, then has a vision of Leonore coming to save him. He collapses and falls asleep. Rocco and Leonore come to dig his grave and find him asleep. As they dig Rocco urges Leonore to hurry.

 

Florestan awakes and Leonore recognizes him. When Florestan learns at last that he is in Pizarro’s prison, he asks that a message be sent to his wife, Leonore Florestan, but Rocco says it is impossible. Florestan begs for a drop to drink, and Rocco tells Leonore to give him one. Florestan does not recognize Leonore but tells her she will be rewarded in Heaven. She begs Rocco to be allowed to give Florestan a crust of bread, and he agrees. Florestan eats.

 

Rocco obeys his orders and sounds the alarm for Pizarro, who appears and asks if all is ready. Rocco says that it is and tells Leonore to leave, but instead she hides. Pizarro reveals his identity to Florestan, who accuses him of murder. As Pizarro brandishes a dagger, Leonore leaps between him and Florestan and reveals her identity. Pizarro raises his dagger to kill her but she pulls a gun and threatens to shoot him.

 

Just then the trumpet is heard, announcing the arrival of the minister. Jaquino enters, followed by soldiers, to announce that the minister is waiting at the gate. Rocco tells the soldiers to escort Governor Pizarro upstairs. Florestan and Leonore sing to their victory as Pizarro declares he will have revenge, and Rocco expresses his fear of what is to come. Together, Florestan and Leonore sing a love duet.

 

The prisoners and townsfolk sing to the day and hour of justice which has come. The minister, Don Fernando, announces that tyranny has ended. Rocco enters, with Leonore and Florestan, and he asks Don Fernando to help them. Rocco explains how Leonore disguised herself as Fidelio to save her husband. Marzelline is shocked. Rocco describes Pizarro’s murder plot, and Pizarro is led away to prison. Florestan is released from his chains by Leonore, and the crowd sings the praises of Leonore, the loyal savior of her husband.

Price:
£19.00 | Concession £17.00 | TLC £17.00
Start: 5th August 2017
End: 5th August 2017

Dates & Times

Saturday 5th August 2017 19:00

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