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30th Aniversary Season - 2008
Marinka: The Mayerling Story
Romantic Musical in 2 acts by George Marion, Jr. and Karl Farkas. Music by Emmerich Kálmán.
Premiere: Winter Garden, New York, 18 July 1945
One of history's most passionate romances and unsolved mysteries, the Mayerling story of the Austrian crown prince, his young mistress, and their untimely demise has inspired countless films, ballets, novels, and plays.
The story unfolds as a flashback from the 1930's to 1888 Vienna. Crown Prince Rudolph, the son of Emperor Franz Joseph, pleads with his father for greater involvement in the affairs of state. Franz Joseph chastises his son for his sordid affairs that have taken him away from his duty as a husband and father. Rudolph, informed that his former paramour, Countess Landowska, has written a politically damaging book, is determined to stop its publication. At the debutante presentation ceremony, Rudolph meets the young countess, Marie Vetsera, and invites her for a private meeting at his hunting lodge at Mayerling. His increasing feelings for Marie are tempered when he receives a visit from Lieutenant Baltatzy, who claims to be Marie's fiancé. She convinces Rudolph otherwise as they fall into each other's arms, watched all the time by the scheming lieutenant. Marie is summoned before the Emperor, whose spies have informed him of the budding relationship. He convinces Marie that she must leave Rudolph forever; otherwise, the Prince would be forced to abdicate, an option that the Empire will not tolerate. Rudolph's appeal to the Pope for annulment of his current marriage and his alignment with Hungary in defying his father's outdated policies serve only to heighten the tension between father and son and the romance between the two lovers. What choice do they have?
This is Ohio Light Opera's ninth Kálmán operetta. Last season's The Duchess of Chicago was totally sold out—so don't miss this first fully-staged production of Marinka in more than 60 years. Among Kálmán song gems is the show-stopping "When I auditioned for the harem of the shah."