THE ROMAN CARNIVAL
Operetta in three acts, music by Johann Strauss, text by Joseph Braun and Richard Genée
It’s an old but timeless story. A young man woos a girl, then ups and leaves her. The girl’s name is Marie and she lives in the Swiss Alps. The young man is a painter named Arthur Bryk who made a portrait of the girl while passing through, promised her his hand in marriage, then continued on his way to Italy – to Rome, as Marie learns from his painter friends, and to where she resolves to follow him. Disguised as a boy, she approaches her beloved like the muse in “The Tales of Hoffmann” or Goethe’s “Mignon,” becoming his most loyal and talented pupil. After a good deal of turmoil, in the midst of carnival celebrations in Rome, she finally becomes his lover and wife.
“The Roman Carnival” is the lesser known of Johann Strauss’s two operettas in which his musical genius conjures up the magic and atmosphere of Italy and carnival. The fabled South, Italy as the cherished destination of artists from the North, is transformed in Johann Strauss’s work into masterfully composed ensemble scenes, songs, arias, duets and choir passages that are almost more suggestive of opera. The Dresden State Operetta is now reviving this sadly neglected operetta by Johann Strauss, performing it again for the first time in seventy years.
shorttime changes in the evening’s cast possible due to illness and force majeure