Hungarian State Opera House tickets 25 February 2025 - The Merry Widow | GoComGo.com

The Merry Widow

Hungarian State Opera House, Budapest, Hungary
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7 PM
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US$ 98

E-tickets: Print at home or at the box office of the event if so specified. You will find more information in your booking confirmation email.

You can only select the category, and not the exact seats.
If you order 2 or 3 tickets: your seats will be next to each other.
If you order 4 or more tickets: your seats will be next to each other, or, if this is not possible, we will provide a combination of groups of seats (at least in pairs, for example 2+2 or 2+3).

Important Info
Type: Ballet
City: Budapest, Hungary
Starts at: 19:00
Acts: 3
Intervals: 2
Duration: 2h 20min

E-tickets: Print at home or at the box office of the event if so specified. You will find more information in your booking confirmation email.

You can only select the category, and not the exact seats.
If you order 2 or 3 tickets: your seats will be next to each other.
If you order 4 or more tickets: your seats will be next to each other, or, if this is not possible, we will provide a combination of groups of seats (at least in pairs, for example 2+2 or 2+3).

Cast
Performers
Ballet company: Hungarian National Ballet
Orchestra: Hungarian State Opera Orchestra
Conductor: Thomas Herzog
Creators
Composer: Alan Abbott
Composer: Franz Lehár
Composer: John Lanchbery
Choreographer: Ronald Hynd
Overview

After touring Hungarian communities in the neighbouring countries, the whimsical comedy accompanied by the wonderful melodies from the well-known operetta is returning to the Hungarian State Opera House.

Ronald Hynd's choreography for the ballet version of Ferenc Lehár's timelessly popular operetta has been one of the most popular pieces for dance stages since it was first presented in 1975. It is a difficult work to classify in terms of genre: constructed from classical elements and full of humorous twists and turns, it can best be described as a “comic ballet”. Surprisingly, considering Lehár's Hungarian origins, it was only in 2014 that Hynd's adaptation made it into the repertoire of the Hungarian National Ballet.

History
Premiere of this production: 13 November 1975, Palais Theatre, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

The Merry Widow ballet is a 1975 adaptation of Franz Lehár's 1905 romantic operetta The Merry Widow (Die lustige Witwe). John Lanchbery and Alan Abbott adapted the score of the operetta for ballet and retained the style of Lehár's orchestration. The arrangement includes the well-known tunes of the operetta: Vilja's song Ich bin eine anständige Frau and the Weibermarsch. This musical arrangement has been used for two ballets: the first was choreographed by Ronald Hynd for The Australian Ballet in 1975, while the second was choreographed by Veronica Paeper for CAPAB (since renamed the Cape Town City Ballet Company) in 1988.

Synopsis

Act I  
Scene One
 – The antechamber of the Pontevedrian embassy in Paris, 1905  
The embassy is planning a ball in honour of the birthday of the Grand Duke of Pontevedro. The clerks Kromov and Prisics are anxious to finish their work as quickly as possible. The French attaché Camille de Rosillon is also ready to abandon his tasks. The ambassador's secretary, Njegus, arrives and instructs the three men to return to their desks, since they have work to do. When Njegus asks where he can find Count Danilo Danilovitch, the embassy's first secretary, they answer that he is out drinking. Shortly after the four have resumed working on their tasks, the secretary informs his colleagues that Pontevedro has gone bankrupt. Next to enter is the ambassador, Baron Mirko Zeta. In his hand is a telegram informing them that the wealthy Pontevedrian widow Hanna Glawari will be honouring them with her presence at the ball. The baron wants to convince Danilo to marry the widow so that her fortune will remain in the little Balkan state. The ambassador's wife, Valencienne, also joins the little company, and together they drink to the grand duke's health. Camille and Valencienne remain behind as the other depart. Valencienne starts to flirt with Camille. Even though she makes a show of her ring to remind him that she has a husband, this does little to impede their bantering. They don't even notice the sudden appearance of Njegus, who conceals himself behind a desk and only emerges when the two kiss. The lovers quickly separate, with Camille slinking off. Valencienne, however, asks Njegus to remain silent. Staggering in drunkenly, Danilo returns to the embassy from Maxim's. The ambassador tries to convince him to agree to the marriage, but finding that the designated groom is inebriated, he then asks Njegus to sober him up.
Scene Two – The embassy ball  
The ambassador and his wife open the festivities. Afflicted with rheumatism, however, the baron is unable to dance with his wife for long. Camille asks him if he can substitute for him in dancing with Valencienne.Hanna Glawari arrives slightly late and is introduced to the embassy staff, including Count Danilovitch, by Baron Zeta. The ambassador has no clue that the widowed millionaire and Danilo have already met, and in fact were once even in love. Many years earlier, Danilo's family had been opposed to his marrying the then still-poor peasant girl. At the ball, Danilo tells Hanna that he still loves her, but the widow accuses of him of simply trying to get his hands on her money. The disappointed count wipes his forehead with the same kerchief that he once received from Hanna as a memento of their love. Hanna takes back the kerchief and leaves him there by himself. Danilo, on the other hand, reminisces about the days when he knew Hanna as a peasant girl.When Danilo returns to the ballroom, it's ladies' choice. Hanna selects Danilo, but in his disappointment the count rejects her rudely. Offended by this behaviour, Hanna instead dances with Camille, which makes Valencienne unhappy. Eventually, a partner switch brings Hanna and Danilo together on the dance floor. Even though the widow resists, she can no longer conceal her love for the count.

Act II – In the garden of Hanna Glawari's villa  
A day later, Hanna is holding a ball in her villa in Paris. Dressed in Pontevedrian folk costumes, the guests resume saluting the grand duke with a great variety of dances. Peace is restored between Hanna and Danilo.Camille and Valencienne, however, are unable to restrain their emotions and, throwing caution to the wind, dance a duet before heading out to the garden pavilion. Njegus arrives just in time to get a glimpse of the two figures sneaking off and rushes to the keyhole to find out who is inside. Presently Mirko Zeta and Danilo also appear and notice the peeping secretary. In order to safeguard Valencienne's secret, Njegus swallows the key to the pavilion. As the other two men deliberate over how to open the door, Njegus asks Hanna, who happens to be strolling by, to rescue the situation. She agrees to help and steal into the pavilion through the back entrance, allowing her to open the door from the inside. Out struts Camille, followed shortly afterwards – to everyone's great surprise – by Hanna. To improve the joke even further, Hanna then reveals to the astonished group that Camille has asked for her hand in marriage. The ambassador is devastated to see his plan appear go up in smoke, and Valencienne swoons at her suitor's faithlessness. The grief-stricken Danilo, on the other hand, produces the kerchief he had received as a token of Hanna's love and then regained and thrusts it at Hanna's feet. Hanna, for her part, is delighted to see that Danilo is truly in love with her, and not her money.

Act III – Maxim's  
At the nightspot, the maître d' welcomes the new arrivals. Entering on the heels of a procession of odd-looking characters are Baron Zeta, Valencienne and Njegus. The ambassador informs the company that bankruptcy is now inevitable for Pentevedro, prompting Njegus to lower the state flag. Hoping to lift the sombre mood, the maître d' brings champagne. Camille is received with contempt, but Danilo swiftly starts up the revelries, with grisettes providing the requisite high spirits throughout. Valencienne also joins in with the can-can.Now arriving, Hanna finds she has two men after her: Camille, maintaining the fiction out of obligation, and Danilo, out of love. Danilo is about to challenge Camille to a duel, but Hanna intervenes. When Valencienne comes to Camille's defence, however, the ambassador instantly realizes that it was his own wife who was in the pavilion with the attaché. Both couples dance. Somewhat despondent, Baron Zéta makes his peace with both his wife and her beau, and the three leave together. The disappointed Hanna stands in the middle of the room, but Danilo returns to her and clasps her in his arms. The couple's happiness is now unblemished, and Pontevedro is no longer in danger of going insolvent.

Venue Info

Hungarian State Opera House - Budapest
Location   Andrássy út 22

The Hungarian State Opera House (Hungarian: Magyar Állami Operaház) is a neo-Renaissance opera house located in central Budapest, on Andrássy út. The Hungarian State Opera House is the main opera house of the country and the second largest opera house in Budapest and in Hungary. Today, the opera house is home to the Budapest Opera Ball, a society event dating back to 1886. The Theatre was designed by Miklós Ybl, a major figure of 19th-century Hungarian architecture.

Construction began in 1875, funded by the city of Budapest and by Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria-Hungary, and the new house opened to the public on the 27 September 1884. Before the closure of the "Népszínház" in Budapest, it was the third largest opera building in the city; today it is the second largest opera house in Budapest and in Hungary.

Touring groups had performed operas in the city from the early 19th century, but as Legány notes, "a new epoch began after 1835 when part of the Kasa National Opera and Theatrical Troupe arrived in Buda". They took over the Castle Theatre and, in 1835, were joined by another part of the troupe, after which performances of operas were given under conductor Ferenc Erkel. By 1837 they had established themselves at the Magyar Színház (Hungarian Theatre) and by 1840, it had become the "Nemzeti Színház" (National Theatre). Upon its completion, the opera section moved into the Hungarian Royal Opera House, with performances quickly gaining a reputation for excellence in a repertory of about 45 to 50 operas and about 130 annual performances. 

Many important artists were guests here including the composer Gustav Mahler, who was director in Budapest from 1888 to 1891 and Otto Klemperer, who was music director for three years from 1947 to 1950.

It is a richly decorated building and is considered one of the architect's masterpieces. It was built in neo-Renaissance style, with elements of Baroque. Ornamentation includes paintings and sculptures by leading figures of Hungarian art including Bertalan Székely, Mór Than, and Károly Lotz. Although in size and capacity it is not among the greatest, in beauty and the quality of acoustics the Budapest Opera House is considered to be amongst the finest opera houses in the world.

The auditorium holds 1,261 people. It is horseshoe-shaped and – according to measurements done in the 1970s by a group of international engineers – has the third best acoustics in Europe after La Scala in Milan and the Palais Garnier in Paris. Although many opera houses have been built since the Budapest Opera House is still among the best in terms of acoustics.

In front of the building are statues of Ferenc Erkel and Franz Liszt. Liszt is the best-known Hungarian composer. Erkel composed the Hungarian national anthem, and was the first music director of the Opera House; he was also the founder of the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra.

Each year the season lasts from September to the end of June and, in addition to opera performances, the House is home to the Hungarian National Ballet.

There are guided tours of the building in six languages (English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, and Hungarian) almost every day.

Important Info
Type: Ballet
City: Budapest, Hungary
Starts at: 19:00
Acts: 3
Intervals: 2
Duration: 2h 20min
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