The Merry Widow (L.A. 1961)


This English adaptation of the Franz Lehár operetta opened on October 26, 1961 at the Jan Hus Playhouse in New York City. Well-known music from the score includes the songs “Vilja,” “You’ll Find Me at Maxim’s,” and “The Merry Widow Waltz.”

  • Synopsis
  • Credits
  • Orchestration
  • Materials
  • Cast
  • History
  • Upcoming
  • The baron who serves as ambassador of the kingdom of Marsovia wishes his attaché Prince Danilo would wed the wealthy widow Sonia to help the kingdom’s finances, and the couple falls in love despite themselves, in Franz Lehár’s operetta.

  • English Lyrics by Adrian Ross
    English Book by Ben Roberts & Sidney Sheldon
    Music by Franz Lehár
    Original Book by Leo Stein & Victor Leon

    The title page of the program shall contain the following announcement in type size at least one-half the size of the authors’ credits:

    is presented by arrangement with
    Tams-Witmark, A Concord Theatricals Company

    Additionally, you agree to include the above language hyperlinked to on all websites on which you promote the play.

  • Instrumentation: 20 Parts

    2 Violin I
    1 Violin II
    1 Viola
    1 Cello
    1 Bass
    1 Flute I
    1 Flute II
    1 Oboe
    1 Clarinet I
    1 Clarinet II
    1 Bassoon
    1 Horn I
    1 Horn II
    1 Trumpet I
    1 Trumpet II
    1 Trombone I
    1 Trombone II
    1 Percussion
    1 Harp

  • Rehearsal Materials

    2       Piano/Conductor Scores
    20     Libretto/Vocal Books

  • (in order of appearance)

    Major Domo
    Chevalier St. Brioche
    Vicomte Cascada
    Sylvaine (Madame Khadja)
    Olga (Madame Novikovich)
    Capt. Pierre De Jolidon
    Prince Danilo

    Girls from Maxim’s:

    Guests, Lackeys, Housemaids and Musicians
    Singing Ladies
    Singing Gentleman
    Dancing Girls
    Dancing Boys

  • The operetta was first performed at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna on 30 December 1905 and had several very successful productions in Austria and Germany. In its English adaptation by Basil Hood, with lyrics by Adrian Ross, the show became a sensation in London in 1907, starring Lily Elsie and opened a few months later on Broadway for a very successful run. Thereafter, it was played frequently in America and throughout the English speaking world, and is still frequently revived in English.

    This revival opened on October 26, 1961 at the Jan Hus Playhouse in New York City.

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