Need some inspiration in lockdown? Watch Birmingham Opera’s Fidelio this weekend5:17, 20th November 2020
Set yourself free
Beethoven’s opera about the power of love as an agent for personal redemption and bringing an end to tyranny. Graham Vick’s 2002 production was staged in a tent in the grounds of Aston Hall, Birmingham, with the performers mingling among the audience. It took Beethoven’s opera into the heart of a community in Birmingham and broke down the ‘fourth wall’ of traditional stagings entirely. Even watching it on a screen 18 years later , you’re drawn inexorably into this performance. It’s a lesson in how moving immersive theatre can be – something we have missed sorely in a year of social-distancing. Don’t expect musical perfection – it can be rough around edges; but revel in committed, unflinching performances from a marvellous cast led by Jane Leslie Mackenzie as Leonore/Fidelio and Ronald Samm as Florestan. This is opera delivered in the raw – at its most urgent and compelling.