OP0338. FIERRABRAS (Schubert), Live Performance, 1988, w.Abbado Cond. Josef Protschka, Laszlo Polgár, Robert Holl, Karita Mattila, Thomas Hampson, Cheryl Studer, etc. 2-DG 427 341, Slipcase Edition wi.Elaborate 248pp. Libretto-Brochure in German, Italian & English. Very long out-of-print, Final Copy! - 028942734128
“FIERREBRAS is a three-act opera written by the composer Franz Schubert in 1823, to a libretto by Josef Kupelwieser, the general manager of the Theater am Kärntnertor (Vienna's Court Opera Theatre). Along with the earlier ALFONSO UND ESTRELLA, composed in 1822, it marks Schubert's attempt to compose grand Romantic opera in German, departing from the Singspiel tradition.
The Kärntnertor Theater in 1822 commissioned operas from Schubert and Carl Maria von Weber in a drive to increase the number of German operas in repertoire. Schubert fulfilled his commission with FIERREBRAS, von Weber his with EURYANTHE. The Italian theatre director Domenico Barbaja, who had taken over the theatre in 1821, at the same time brought Rossini to Vienna to oversee production of several of his operas at the Kärntnertor Theater. Rossini's operas were so popular that EURYANTHE unsuccessfully premiered in October 1823, resulting in the shelving of plans to stage FIERREBRAS, and the resignation of Josef Kupelwieser as director of the theater, complaining of ‘arrogance’ on the part of Barbaja. As a result, Schubert never saw the opera staged, or even received payment for his work."