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When Perry visits Donna just ahead of Tragg, she is playing a classical piece on the piano. Perry can’t “quite place it.” Later, Perry writes a note to Donna in jail and comments to Della that “I just remembered the title to a beautiful Beethoven overture.” The title in the note looks like “Fidelis” but it's “Fidelio” (compare the “o” to the “s” above) as is confirmed in the closing scene. Now, Fidelio is an opera and does have an overture, but isn’t this an odd piece for piano solo? So what was Donna playing? Submitted by Steve Fox, 10/20/04.
+ The music misidentified as Fidelio in the first scene, with Carpenter at the piano, is definitely the first movement of the Sonata Pathétique. In the scene Steve mentions, the closed captions claim Donna is playing an arrangement of Fidelio, but it sounds like no part of an orchestral recording I have reviewed. Lastly, as Perry Mason writes his note and Donna reads it, I cannot recognize the music playing as from the Fidelio overture, either. Submitted by gracep, 10/21/2010.
+ When Mason visits Donna in the cottage and remarks on her gifts, though he cannot name the piece, the music heard is a piano version of one of Beethoven’s Leonora Overtures. Since Beethoven was not especially comfortable writing for voices, he composed only one opera, Fidelio, and labored on it for some time. He wrote three different versions of the original overture which are now known as Leonora Overtures Numbers 1, 2 and 3 (Leonora was the heroine of the opera who disguises herself as a boy, Fidelio, to help her imprisoned husband). After all this effort, Beethoven eventually composed a completely different overture for opera performances. The Leonora Overture #3 is a well-known concert piece and is also sometimes played between acts of the opera; #2 is rarely played, #1 very rarely. The section Donna plays could be from either #2 or #3. Technically, therefore, Mason is incorrect identifying it as Fidelio. Submitted by FredK, 20 Nov 2010.
Several times, while Perry wrote the name "Fidelio", I closely watched the movements of his right hand (using one of those wonderful Parker 61 desk pens).
I also looked closely at the name on the paper.
I feel persuaded that the final letter, as Perry wrote it, is truly an "o" rather than an "s".
Submitted by DocRushing on 15 September 2012.
The correct way of spelling protégé is with an acute accent above each e. The title on the episode features none (although the DVD and DVD jacket does). Also the feminine form of the word (the protégé of the title is a female) is protégée. Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 5/13/14.
Wink, Wink: David Carpenter didn't die! Because he could no longer perform he became a conductor and changed his name to Borov (see "Bye Bye Birdie" (1963)). Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 5/13/14.
Maid?: Did Mrs. Carpenter have servents? While talking to Eric at her house the doorbell was ringing then Mr. Collis entered the room. Did he just walk into the house because nobody answered the door? Submitted by H. Mason 11/3/14
What he saw: Mr. Gracie did see a car he recognized, but mistook it for Mr. Carpenter's instead of his wife's. That's the only way the facts fit if he saw Donna leave after that car...Why didn't Mr. Carpenter notice the car at the cottage? Submitted by H. Mason 11/3/14
Hard to believe? It seems a bit hard to believe that on the stand Donna said that she was not aware David Carpenter was in love with her or at least has some interest after providing her a house, a car, and lavish gifts especially at 1960 prices. She is quite the naive one. Submitted by Perry Baby 9/29/15.