Opera Scotland

Fidelio 1974Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Fidelio

Scottish Opera's spring 1974 season opened on 16 March with a single performance at Stirling's MacRobert Centre. This was the World Premiere of a new commission from Iain Hamilton, The Catiline Conspiracy. When the company moved on to its first visit to York, Catiline was joined by the previous season's Merry Widow and the recent compact staging of The Magic Flute. At Sunderland a revival of the 1970 Traviata joined the programme and the ensemble then moved on to Oxford. The Flute was then the only work seen in Perth before the main season opened in Glasgow. In that city, Newcastle, Edinburgh and Aberdeen, the repertoire of Catiline, Merry Widow and Traviata, all of which used the Scottish Chamber Orchestra or its expanded version, the Scottish Philharmonia, was augmented by the two operas that required the services of the SNO - revivals of the 1965 Boris Godunov and 1970 Fidelio.

This was the first revival of Peter Ebert's atmospheric production. Leonore and the Marschallin were the only roles that Helga Dernesch returned to during her years with Scottish Opera, and she also sang Fidelio in the opening season of the Theatre Royal. In this run, Margaret Kingsley was scheduled to sing the last three performances, and sang one in Newcastle as a late replacement. Werner Krenn was also a member of that original team, and gave a lively performance once again. Rocco was one of Bill McCue's most effective roles, and he sang in every run of this staging.

Newcomers to the cast included Charles Craig and Patricia Hay, singing their parts for the first time, with John Shaw and Richard Angas coming in to give appropriate stature to their vital roles. One benefit of the company's new scheme of employing ten salaried principals paid dividends, since, in addition to Pat Hay, the two solo prisoners were also sung by promising young soloists, one Canadian, the other Australian.

Performance Cast

Jaquino Rocco's assistant

Werner Krenn (Exc Jun 6, 8)

David Fieldsend (Jun 6, 8)

Marzelline Rocco's daughter

Patricia Hay

Rocco gaoler

William McCue

Leonore Florestan's wife, disguised as Fidelio

Helga Dernesch (Exc May 16, 27; Jun 6, 8)

Margaret Kingsley (May 16, 27; Jun 6, 8)

Don Pizarro prison governor

John Shaw

First Prisoner

Frederick Donaldson

Second Prisoner

Malcolm Donnelly

Florestan a Spanish nobleman

Charles Craig

Don Fernando the King's Minister

Richard Angas

Performance DatesFidelio 1974

Map List

King's Theatre, Glasgow | Glasgow

27 Apr, 19.30 1 May, 19.30 4 May, 19.30

Theatre Royal, Newcastle | Newcastle-upon-Tyne

16 May, 19.30 18 May, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

22 May, 19.30 25 May, 19.30 27 May, 19.30

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

6 Jun, 19.30 8 Jun, 19.30

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