Three Graces, The (Libellentanz)
Composer: Lehar, Franz 1870 - 1948
English version - Ben Travers
The history of Lehár’s Der Libellentanz (1923) is rather curious. In the middle of the First World War, Lehár wrote one of his least successful operettas, Der Sterngucker (The Star Gazer - 1916). It was revised as La danza delle libellule (1922), and then became Der Libellentanz the following year. SYNOPSIS: M. Piper, who has bought a castle at Nancy, invites friends to perform in a play he has written. His two friends have flirtatious wives who, as ex-chorus girls, are good friends with Hélène, the young widow Clicquot. The Duke of Nancy arrives, under the guise of ‘Mr. Nimrod’, and is attracted to Hélène, but he is forced to leave by Toutou, the hotelier’s wife, because he appears indifferent to her charms. Charles is placed under house arrest upon his return, and so is forced to reveal his true identity. Play rehearsals continue, but when Charles argues with Hélène, and is asked to leave again, he produces a court order, and reclaims the property. At the end of the final act, the two wives are reunited with their husbands, and - after much complication - Charles and Hélène finally find one another.
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