Although I am a big fan of opera and have been for the longest time, I always manage to make a new discovery. Fedora is one of those new discoveries, and also a treasure. I had previously seen the 1997 production with Placido Domingo and Mirella Freni, and came across this 1988 production from Teatro Di Liceu, Barcelona.
I still consider Andrea Chenier Umberto Giordano's masterpiece, being compelled by the plot more. However that is not to dispute Fedora in any way, the characters ring true, the story drew me in and the music is sublime. Any scene with Fedora and Loris is either achingly moving or stirringly believable, the case here and with the 1997 production.
The costumes and sets are ornate and beautiful to watch really. The video directing is excellent too, and picture and sound quality have no qualms too, likewise with the orchestra playing and conducting. The performances are exceptional.
Placido Domingo and Renato Scotto are/were outstanding singing-actors, and their chemistry is just breathtaking here. Domingo is in wonderful voice and his acting is exemplary, while Scotto for me is in better voice than she was in the early 1980s where she was still brilliant but there were times when her high notes had a tendency to be on the shrill side and she acts just as compellingly as Domingo. They have a solid support cast, with Vicente Sardiniero standing out as De Siriex.
In conclusion, riveting production of an underrated treasure of an opera. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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