Thursday 11/02/2016 20:00
Friday 12/02/2016 13:00
Friday 12/02/2016 20:30
Music by Johann Strauss Jr.
Bubbling Viennese operetta comes direct from Budapest as the Budapest Operetta Theatre presents its champagne like production of Strauss’ ultimate operetta full with sweeping waltzes.
New Production | Sung in German | Duration: 2 hours and 30 minutes
Libretto: Karl Haffner & Richard Genee
|Conductor||Laszlo Maklary (KERO)|
|Director||Miklos Gabor Kerenyi|
|Costumes Designer||Tunde Kemenesi|
|Set Designer||Csorsz Khell|
|Among the soloists|
The Budapest Operetta and Musical Theatre Choir
The Budapest Operetta and Musical Theatre Dancers
The Budapest Operetta and Musical Theatre Orchestra
Four years before the action of the opera begins
Gabriel von Eisenstein, a man of private means, and his friend the notary Dr. Falke, have been attending parties together for years. Upon returning from a lavish costume ball – which, as usual, involved heavy drinking – Eisenstein decides to play a dirty trick on his old friend, and leaves him sleeping in the park dressed in his magnificent bat costume. The next morning, wending his way home still dressed as a bat, to the great amusement of the passers-by and to his own great shame, Falke resolves to get even. Four years later his plan is ripe. Aided by the eccentric Russian Prince Orlofsky, who, bored with his own licentiousness, is always game for fresh diversions, he stages his spectacular revenge!
A room in Eisenstein’s house
Outside the house a voice is heard serenading Rosalinde, Eisenstein’s wife and the lady of the house. She recognizes the voice to be that of Alfred, an opera singer and her former lover, who was thought long gone and has now reappeared and is using all his vocal skills to tempt his still adored Rosalinde to a tête-à- tête. Adele, the Eisensenstein’s maid, has received a letter from her sister Ida, inviting her to a party at Prince Orlofsky’s. Now, in addition to debating what she could possibly wear to the sumptuous occasion, she contemplates how she might get the night off. Nothing, not even a “very sick aunt”, assists her in her pleas: Rosalinde refuses, as her husband is due to start a five day prison sentence that evening for assault. As Adele leaves the room, Alfred appears and is persuaded to leave only with the promise that he can return that evening, when Eisenstein has gone to jail.
Eisenstein returns from his court hearing. He is enraged, for his bungling lawyer, Dr. Blind, rather than reduce his sentence, has actually caused it to be increased to eight days. Falke opportunely appears and persuades Eisenstein to begin serving his sentence only the following morning and to enjoy his last evening of freedom with him at a party at Prince Orlofsky’s. Rosalinde and Adele reappear. Having promised Alfred he can return to see her, Rosalinde, who does not wish her maid present at the rendezvous, releases Adele for the night. Adele leaves as do Eisenstein and Falke, assuring Rosalinde that her husband is on his way to prison.
Alfred appears and, preparing himself for an intimate evening with Rosalinde, dons Eisenstein’s robe. They are interrupted by the prison governor, Frank, who, before repairing to Orlofsky’s party himself, has come to accompany Eisenstein to prison. Discovered alone with a man wearing her husband’s robe, Rosalinde protests at the notion that he could be anyone but her husband, and Alfred is forced to go along with the pretence so as not to compromise his beloved’s honor.
Prince Orlofsky’s villa
The party at prince Orlofsky’s is in full swing. Champagne is flowing and Falke’s elaborate charade is starting to unfold. Adele, wearing her mistress’ dress, approaches Ida, who at first denies having sent her a letter but then promises to present Adele as a singer named Olga. Eisenstein, introduced as the Marquis Renard, soon spots Adele, but when he comments on her likeness to his maid, she dismisses the suggestion, and all agree that the confusion is the result of a merely coincidental – though most amazing – likeness. Eisenstein now finds himself obliged to converse with, of all people, the prison governor Frank, whom Falke presents as Chevalier Chagrin.
Falke has in the meantime informed Rosalinde that her husband has left home to go not to prison, but rather to Orlofsky’s party, and has invited her to join the festivities dressed as a Hungarian countess. She arrives at the party, and decides to present herself instead as a famous singer. Eisenstein is instantly fascinated by the exotic new guest, and attempts to seduce her with his well tried and tested ploy of the repeater watch. But he underestimates the cleverness of his present victim, who slyly pockets his watch. Falke persuades Rosalinde to prove she is indeed an artist, and she does so with a fiery csárdás. Orlofsky proposes a toast to champagne, the king of all wines. Merriment abounds, but when the clock strikes six, Frank and Eisenstein both rush off to prison – the one to work, the other to begin serving his sentence.
The prison governor’s office
The drunken jailer Frosch, though annoyed by Alfred’s constant singing – whom he unsuccessfully tries to silence – is nevertheless enjoying his drink. No sooner does Frank arrive in high spirits, than Adele and Ida appear at his office seeking him. Adele confesses that she is not really an actress, but is convinced that all she needs in order to become one is a patron with some money and influence. Believing Frank to be the perfect candidate, she proceeds to demonstrate her talents to him, and he is soon persuaded. Eisenstein arrives to start his prison sentence. He is surprised to find “Chevalier Chagrin”, but even more so to learn from him that he had already personally arrested Eisenstein the night before. Falke appears followed by Dr. Blind, and Eisenstein, who is anxious to know who was discovered in his wife’s company, quickly exchanges clothes with Blind at Falke’s instigation. When Rosalinde comes to the prison, Eisenstein learns all he wanted to know at first hand. Indignant and outraged, he reveals his true identity. But Rosalinde has her own little surprise: she presents her husband with a repeater watch which she had obtained from a certain Marquis Renard. The rest of the company arrives, and Falke reveals to Eisenstein that the whole affair has been his revenge for the bat incident. Eisenstein has no choice but to take this with good heart, and all agree that any misdemeanor should be blamed on King Champagne alone.