March 06, 2019

The Merry Widow: Creating the Dance

Lyric’s stage will be awhirl this fall with the eye-catching song-and-dance numbers that are central to Franz Lehár’s delightful operetta The Merry Widow. Director-choreographer Susan Stroman has assembled a crack ensemble of dancers – eight women and four men – who will be joined by four dancing men from Lyric’s chorus.  Opportunities abound for all kinds of dancing, from elegant to risqué, with Acts One and Two taking place at lavish parties in Paris circa early 1900s, and Act Three at the famously frisky nightclub Maxim's. In that setting “Stro” has the dancers doing cartwheels and splits and acrobatics and cancan. 

And wait till you see their costumes! Even the leading ladies and gentlemen get into the act: as the merry widow herself, Renée Fleming andElizabeth Futral will each take a spin around the stage with Thomas Hampson as her elusive former and future beau. And as a former grisette, Heidi Stober will show more than a little leg with the current cancan girls of Maxim’s.

Inside the Opera with Susan Stroman: The cast of THE MERRY WIDOW


Lyric Opera presentation of Lehár's The Merry Widow generously made possible by the Donna Van Eekeren FoundationHoward Gottlieb and Barbara GreisMr. J. Thomas HurvisKirkland & Ellis LLP, and the Mazza Foundation.

Production owned by The Metropolitan Opera.

Photo: Ken Howard (Metropolitan Opera)