Fidelio, Hamburg Opera, Cult Opera Series ★★★★★
Though the music is absolutely spectacular and fitting of Beethoven at his best, the opera also shows the problems that Beethoven had at writing opera, in that the staging is quite awkward, making it challenging for any opera company to produce. This opera is a “reality” opera filmed in a real Spanish prison rather than on the stage. The singing is absolutely spectacular, with an awesome cast, including a very young Lucia Popp as Marcelline. The recording has a slightly tinny ring to it, as though you were listening to an old RCA recording from the 1950s. This opera was produced in 1968. In spite of all the faults, it was so well done, that it deserves 5 stars.