Stage Door News

Toronto: Toronto Operetta Theatre presents Franz Lehár’s “The Merry Widow” April 24-28

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Franz Lhár’s most popular operetta, THE MERRY WIDOW, makes a highly anticipated return to the Toronto Operetta Theatre stage as the finale to the current season. Lehár’s Viennese masterpiece from the Silver Age premiered to rapturous acclaim in the Austrian capital and has since been heard around the world for over 100 years.  TOT’s new production opens on April 24 with further performances on April 26, 27 and 28 (mat), 2019 Regular performances begin at 8 pm and matinees at 3 pm.

“I’m thrilled,” says TOT’s General Director, Guillermo Silva-Marin, “this April, Toronto’s operetta lovers can enjoy the greatest operetta of all time highlighted by comic hijinks, romance and one of the world’s most beloved tunes . . . The Merry Widow Waltz.”  Fresh, young faces will enliven TOT’s colourful production and include Lucia Cesaroni as Anna Glawari, recently hailed at the Vancouver opera as the Merry Widow’s title character.   Count Danilo, her reluctant lover, will be played by Michael Nyby, whose credits include the role of the dashing Count for the Edmonton Opera. They will be joined by TOT favourites Daniela Agostino as Valencienne, Matt Chittick as the gigolo Camille and Gregory Finney as the befuddled Baron Zeta.  Larry Beckwith leads the orchestra and Silva-Marin is the producer and stage director.

Franz Lehár and his librettist Leo Stein have conjured a magical world where class distinctions are blown away and true love wins the day.  Set in the splendour of Belle Époque Paris, Lehár’s ravishing score is filled with waltzes, fox-trots, polkas, can cans (one featuring 7 high-kicking Pontevedrian diplomats!) and Anna’s melting Vilja Lied, all tied together by the world’s most famous waltz.  Toronto Operetta Theatre is proud to be in the forefront presenting this unique musical world to music lovers in the Greater Toronto Area. 

TOT’s budget-priced FAMILY NIGHT OUT offers discounts of up to 50% for children and youth under 16 years of age on Friday or Saturday.  Single ticket prices range from $55 to $95, with discounts for groups of 20 or more.  The company is generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, the Jackman Foundation, Bedolfe Foundation, Dalglish Family Foundation, the Marry-Margaret Webb Foundation and media sponsors Classical 96.3 FM and Epoch Times.

The theatre is wheelchair accessible and close to public transit and municipal parking.  Call the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts at 416-366-7723, 1-800-708-6754 or online at

Photo: Lily Elsie as Anna Glawari in The Merry Widow in its London premiere. © 1907.