Beethoven: Leonore, Op. 72

Composer Ludwig van Beethoven
Artist Theo Adam bass-baritone
Edda Moser soprano
Helen Donath soprano
Eberhard Büchner tenor
Rundfunkchor Leipzig
Staatskapelle Dresden
Herbert Blomstedt conductor
Format 2 CD
Cat. number 94868
EAN code 5028421948683
Release April 2014

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About this release

At the time of its first release in 1977, this was a groundbreaking set, presenting for the first time to an international public the first thoughts – or the first extant thoughts – of Beethoven in his protracted attempts to write an opera. Subjects came and went, but the story, already the subject of two operas now consigned to historical oblivion, of a political prisoner rescued by his wife in travesti, retained an obvious and persistent appeal to a composer who had already distinguished himself – and lost not a few clients in the process – for his passionate embrace of enlightenment, even revolutionary ideals.

But when first performed in Vienna in 1805, the opera, named after the woman ahead of her time, had a frosty reception, not least because Vienna was under French military occupation, and most of the audience were French officers who could have taken none too favourably to the critique of a brutal dictatorship which can only be resisted through the last powers of marital love. Revisions followed in 1806, but the version now universally known and loved was finally created and heard in 1814, by which time Beethoven’s own style had undergone a sea-change towards concision and dislocation. Fidelio largely follows those changes, so that the earlier version is much fuller, in three acts, perhaps more of its time but with much music that no lover of Beethoven should miss.

Other information:
- Reissue of this near legendary recording of Beethoven’s Leonore (the first version of what later became Fidelio).
This recording from 1977 was the first recording of this opera, and since then remains a benchmark.
- Featuring the best singers of the time: Eberhard Büchner, Edda Moser, Edith Mathis, Theo Adam, Karl Ridderbusch, and the Staatskapelle Dresden conducted by Herbert Blomstedt.
- “I was enthralled by this performance, which I would recommend to all Beethovenites and all opera-lovers.” (Gramophone, August 1977)
- Libretto available at www.brilliantclassics.com (on release)

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Leonore, Op. 72: Overture
  2. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Fidelio kommt nicht zurück! (Marzelline)
  3. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Aria “O wär’ ich schon mit dir vereint” (Marzelline)
  4. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Wenn ich diese Tür nicht” (Jaquino, Marzelline)
  5. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Duet “Jetzt, Schätzchen” (Jaquino, Marzelline)
  6. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Höre, Jaquino” (Marzelline, Jaquino, Rocco)
  7. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Trio “Ein Mann ist bald genommen” (Rocco, Jaquino, Marzelline)
  8. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Ist Fidelio noch nicht nach Hause gekommen?” (Rocco, Marzelline, Jaquino, Leonore)
  9. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Canon “Mir ist so wunderbar” (Marzelline, Leonore, Rocco, Jaquino)
  10. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Höre, Fidelio” (Rocco, Marzelline, Leonore)
  11. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Aria “Hat man nicht auch Gold beneiben” (Rocco)
  12. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: “Ihr könnt das leicht sagen” (Leonore, Rocco, Marzelline)
  13. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 1: Trio “Gut, Söhnchen, gut” (Rocco, Leonore, Marzelline)
  14. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: March
  15. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Drei Schildwachten auf den Wall” (Pizarro, Rocco)
  16. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: Aria with Chorus “Ha! Welch ein Augenblick!” (Pizarro, Rocco)
  17. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Rocco!” (Pizarro, Rocco)
  18. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: Duet “Jetzt, Alter, jetzt hat es Eile!” (Pizarro, Rocco)
  19. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Nun ist es endlich entschieden” (Marzelline, Leonore)
  20. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: Duet “Um in der Ehe froh zu leben” (Marzelline, Leonore)
  21. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Sie doch, wie du so schnell” (Marzelline, Leonore)
  22. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: Recitative & Aria “Ach, brich noch nicht” (Leonore)

Disk 2

  1. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: Finale “O welche Lust!” (Chorus of the Prisoners)
  2. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Entfernt euch jetzt!” (Rocco, Leonore)
  3. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Wir müssen gleich zu Werke schreiten” (Rocco, Leonore, Marzelline, Pizarro)
  4. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 2: “Auf euch nur will ich bauen” (Pizarro, Chorus)
  5. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Recitative & Aria “Gott! Welch Dunkel hier!” (Florestan)
  6. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Melodrama & Duet “Wie kalt ist es” (Leonore, Rocco)
  7. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Er erwacht!” (Leonore, Rocco, Florestan)
  8. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Trio “Euch werde Lohn in besser’n Welten” (Florestan, Rocco, Leonore)
  9. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Alles ist bereit” (Rocco, Leonore, Pizarro)
  10. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Quartet “Er sterbe!” (Pizarro, Florestan, Leonore, Rocco)
  11. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Die Waffe hab’ ich mir” (Leonore)
  12. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Recitative & Duet “Ich kann mich noch nicht fassen” (Florestan, Leonore)
  13. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “O Leonore, sprich!” (Florestan, Leonore)
  14. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: Finale “Zur Rache” (Chorus, Leonore, Florestan, Rocco, Don Fernando)
  15. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “O Gott! O welch ein Augenblick!” (Leonore, Marzelline, Florestan, Don Fernando, Rocco, Chorus)
  16. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Wie lange habt Ihr sie getragen?” (Don Fernando, Florestan, Rocco, Chorus, Leonore, Marzelline, Jaquino)
  17. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Preist mit hoher Freude Glut” (Chorus)
  18. Leonore, Op. 72, Act 3: “Wer ein solches Weib errungen” (Florestan, Marzelline, Jaquino, Rocco, Don Fernando, Chorus)