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Shanghai, China
Fidelio in the Cloud - a digital children's and youth opera

Fidelio in the Cloud
Fidelio in the Cloud | Illustration: © Goethe-Institut Shanghai

On the occasion of Ludwig van Beethoven's 250th birthday, European musicians realized an adaptation of Beethoven's opera “Fidelio” with Chinese children via online rehearsals, and in just three months.

Since 2020, our lives have been massively influenced by the corona pandemic. And certainly, this pandemic also impacted the PASCH-project and the children's opera “Fidelio”, which was originally planned as a physical summer workshop, but then transferred to the digital space. “Fidelio” is the only opera that Beethoven composed. In the version for children, the musicians have retained the core content of the original work. However, the plot has been simplified so that children and teenagers can better understand and perform it.

From September to November 2020, 36 German learners from Chinese PASCH- and BKD- schools studied under the guidance of artists from renowned European opera houses various aspects of the performing arts: choir singing, drama acting, German pronunciation, role text learning, costumes and props making. At the end of these online rehearsals, the children recorded their individual voices at home with their cell phones and played a version of this opera via Zoom. The post-production brought their voices and recorded images together, and formed a virtual choir. An intermediate result of the opera “Fidelio in the Cloud” was published online on December 16, 2020 and displayed on various social media. The offline version of “Fidelio in the Cloud” will be presented on February 6, 2021 in the Shanghai 1862 Theater with a live youth symphony orchestra.

Project schedule:

  • 28 June 2020
    Announcement, open call
    Application deadline: 31 July 2020
  • 8 August 2020
    Saturday, 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
    Online audition and selection of interested children
  • 5 September - 29 November 2020
    Saturday, 3:00-9:00 PM Choral singing
    Sunday, 2:00-3:00 PM German pronunciation and role text learning
    3:30-5:30 PM Costumes and props making
    6:30-9:00 PM Drama acting
    Online rehearsals and recordings
  • 16 December 2020
    5:00 PM
    Online publication of the opera project “Fidelio in the Cloud”
  • 6 February 2021
    Performance - Shanghai 1862 Theater