Recording “Fidelio” in the time of COVID-19
In commemoration of Beethoven’s 250th birthday, SFCRC had planned to capture two live performances of the composer’s only opera Fidelio at the Kulturpalast Dresden this past April 2020. Due to the devastating complications of the COVID-19 pandemic, these performances had to be cancelled, and SFCRC was tasked with finding a more innovative way to realize the recording.
We are proud of the collective professionalism and adaptability of everyone involved in adhering to safety protocols and social distancing measures while recording. As a result of the exemplary dedication of our musicians and administrative team, and through great collaborative efforts with the recording staff, we were able to complete Fidelio as a studio recording during June 24-27, 2020.
Marek Janowski led the Dresdner Philharmonie and an exceptional cast, starring Lisa Davidsen (Leonore), Christian Elsner (Florestan), Johannes Martin Kränzle (Don Pizarro), Georg Zeppenfeld (Rocco), Christina Landshamer (Marzelline), Cornel Frey (Jaquino), and Günther Groissböck (Minister). One choral passage was recorded with a small ensemble from the MDR-Rundfunkchor in accordance with regulations in place during the production. We look forward to recording the larger choral ensembles as soon as it’s safely possible.
This recording was the first opportunity for many of the artists involved to make music together since coronavirus paralyzed the industry, and their joy in participating was tangible. A rare creative endeavor, and one surely to be remembered by all involved, SFCRC’s Fidelio is expected to be released on PENTATONE in mid-2021.