Beethoven: Fidelio - Behrens, Vickers, Ward, McIntyre, Masterson, Davies, Lloyd; Goodall. London, 1976


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Reginald Goodall is one of those cult figures of opera.   The most dominating feature of his interpretations was the very slow pacing.   But you can't earn the reputation he had by just conducting everything very slow.   Although this Fidelio is more in the Klemperer mold than the Fricsay, the expansiveness never feels stuck.  There is both forward motion and lightness to his approach.   Hildegard Behrens was in sublime voice.   She had not yet moved into the hochdramatische repertoire and her voice has a Mozartian quality to it.  Jon Vickers, despite nearing the twilight of his career, shows that he can still pull out all the stops in one of the hardest arias for tenor.   His voice is tortured and burnished.   Donald McIntyre's gruff voice is perfect for Pizzaro and delivers a guttural and evil "Ha! Welch ein Augenblick!" The sound is excellent although there is about twenty seconds of mild static during the overture.

OD 10273-2