The Greatest Operetta Festival
On Stage Season 2018 July 12 - Aug. 25
Katerina von Bennigsen
KARL STEFAN LIEBENBERG
PENIŽEK, THE VALET
TSCHEKKO, BUTLER OF MARIZA
ILKA VON DAMBÖSSY
Verena Te Best
Gräfin Mariza (Countess Maritza) is an operetta in three acts composed by Hungarian composer Emmerich Kálmán, with a libretto by Julius Brammer and Alfred Grünwald. It premiered in Vienna on 28 February 1924 at the Theater an der Wien.
It opened in Mörbisch SM for the first time in 1959.
It was presented again in 1968, 1979,1987, 2004.
In 2018 it will be the 6th time on stage of SM with amazing artistic design and more spectacular ever.
(24 October 1882 – 30 October 1953)
He was born in Austria-Hungary. Kálmán initially intended to become a concert pianist, but because of early-onset arthritis, he focused on composition instead. He studied music theory and composition at the National Hungarian Royal Academy of Music.
The popularity of his humorous cabaret songs led him towards the composition of operettas. His first great success was Tatárjárás (the English title is The Gay Hussars), which was first staged at the Lustspieltheater in Budapest, on 22 February 1908. Thereafter he moved to Vienna, where he achieved worldwide fame through his operettas Der Zigeunerprimas, Die Csárdásfürstin, Gräfin Mariza, and Die Zirkusprinzessin. He became well known for his fusion of Viennese waltz with Hungarian csárdás.
Kálmán and Franz Lehár were the leading composers of what has been called the "Silver Age" of Viennese operetta during the first quarter of the 20th century.
SCENERY & COSTUMES
Armella Müller von Blon
Place: Hungary / the manor and estate of the Countess Mariza
Time: Around 1920.
Manja the gypsy girl flirts with the newly appointed bailiff, Béla Törek. Unknown to anyone, Törek is in fact the impoverished Count Tassilo, who is seeking to earn a living and set aside some cash for the dowry of his sister Lisa. The Countess Mariza, a young widow, unexpectedly arrives at the estate to celebrate her engagement. This 'engagement' is however quite fictitious, an invention intended to put off her numerous followers. The name she has chosen for her suitor, based on her recollection of Strauss' operetta, The Gypsy Baron, is Baron Koloman Zsupán. However, amongst Mariza's guests, to Tassilo's horror, is Lisa, who he instructs to keep their relationship and his identity strictly secret. Mariza is also embarrassed when a genuine Koloman Zsupán materialises, having seen an announcement of his 'engagement' in the press.
Tassilo is heard by the guests singing an air "Komm, Zigány" ("Come, gypsies!"), which he ends with a czardas. Mariza orders him to repeat it; he refuses, and the angry countess announces that he is fired. Manja predicts that The Countess will be very happy in love. "One moon will pass over this Earth and Mariza will find her happiness", she sings. Mariza therefore decides to remain on her estate. She stops Tassilo from leaving and apologises.
Zsupan has meanwhile decided that he prefers Lisa to Maritza, whilst Mariza is increasingly attracted to Tassilo. However, the ageing Lothario Populescu reveals to Mariza Tassilo's identity, and moreover alleges that Lisa is his girlfriend. Mariza in a high temper insults Tassilo, who declares that he will leave. However, before he goes, the repentant Mariza writes him a 'reference' which is in fact a proposal of marriage. The operetta ends with Mariza and Tassilo, and Zsupan and Lisa, engaged.
Role / Voice type
Countess Mariza soprano
Prince Populescu baritone
Baron Kolomán Zsupán, landowner of Varaždin tenor
Count Tassilo of Endrödy-Wittemburg tenor
Lisa, Tassilo's sister soprano
Karl Stefan Liebenberg bass
Princess Božena Guddenstein zu Clumetz contralto
Penižek, her valet spoken
Tschekko, an old butler of Mariza's
Berko, a gypsy
Manja, a young gypsysoprano
Village children, guests, dancers, gypsies, peasant boys and peasant girls