A glittering cast and superb creative team are brought together for this production of Lehár’s greatest hit, in which Parisian sensuality meets Viennese sophistication
The question of who the young, beautiful and stupendously wealthy widow Hanna Glawari will take as her second husband is a matter of national economic importance for the little-known – and nearly bankrupt – Balkan state of Pontevedro. If she marries a foreigner, Pontevedro will lose Hanna’s millions. So when the widow arrives in Paris, it’s a cause of high excitement among French bachelors everywhere and high anxiety for the Pontevedrian ambassador, Baron Zeta, who must do everything he can to make sure she remarries a suitable – Pontevedrian – man.
Director Giles Havergal’s matchless sense of authentic style is complemented by the dazzling choreography of Stuart Hopps in a work in which almost every bar is infused with the spirit of the dance. Leslie Travers supplies meticulously elegant fin-de-siècle designs, and Kit Hesketh-Harvey applies his characteristically brilliant wit to a fresh English version of the most popular of 20th-century operettas.