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Encyclopedia > Die Fledermaus
Scene from the 1984 version.

Die Fledermaus (en.The Bat) is a comic operetta composed by Johann Strauss II to a German libretto by Carl Haffner and Richard Genée. It premièred on April 5, 1874 at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna, Austria. Image File history File links File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Operetta (literally, little opera) is a performance art-form similar to opera, though it generally deals with less serious topics. ... Johann Strauss II The Waltz King coming to life in the Stadtpark, Vienna Johann Strauss II (or Johann Strauß Sohn - Johann Strauss son - or Johann Strauss the Younger, or Johann Strauss Jr. ... A libretto is the complete body of words used in an extended musical work such as an opera, operetta, masque, sacred or secular oratorio and cantata, musical, and ballet. ... April 5 is the 95th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (96th in leap years). ... 1874 (MDCCCLXXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... The Theater an der Wien is a historic theater in Vienna. ... Vienna (German: Wien [viːn]; Slovenian: Dunaj, Croatian and Serbian: Beč Romanian: Viena, Hungarian: Bécs, Czech: Vídeň, Slovak: Viedeň, Romany Vidnya;) Vienna is the capital of Austria, and also one of the nine States of Austria. ...



The original source for Die Fledermaus is a farce by German playwright Julius Roderich Benedix (18111873), Das Gefängnis (The Prison). Another source is a French vaudeville play, Le Réveillon, by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy. Their play was first translated by Carl Haffner as a straight play to be produced in Vienna. However, the peculiarly French custom of the réveillon (a midnight supper party) caused problems, which were solved by the decision to adapt the play as a libretto for Johann Strauss, with the réveillon replaced by a Viennese ball. At this point Haffner's translation was handed over for adaptation to Richard Genée, who subsequently claimed not only that he had made a fresh translation from scratch but that he had never even met Haffner. A farce is a comedy written for the stage, or a film, which aims to entertain the audience by means of unlikely and extravagant - yet often possible - situations, disguise and mistaken identity, verbal humour of varying degrees of sophistication, which may include puns and sexual innuendo, and a fast-paced... Joyce Rollins is a lesbian. ... 1873 was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calaber). ... Vaudeville is a style of multi-act theatre which flourished in North America from the 1880s through the 1920s. ... Henri Meilhac (February 21, 1831 - 1897), French dramatist, was born in Paris. ... Ludovic Halévy (January 1, 1834 - May 8, 1908), French author, was born in Paris. ... In France and some other French-speaking countries, a réveillon is a long dinner, and possibly a party, held on the evenings preceding Christmas and New Years Day. ...

Outline of the plot

The Baron von Eisenstein has been committed to prison for eight days for insulting an official, partly through the inefficiency of his attorney, the stuttering Notary Blind, and is to begin his imprisonment this day. His friend, Dr. Falke, however, persuades him to postpone it until the morrow and to accompany him to a ball at the residence of Prince Orlofsky, where he will meet the handsome ladies of the opera ballet. Falke had been at a masked ball the previous winter, costumed as a bat, and had been compelled by Eisenstein to walk to his home in broad daylight to the joy and amusement of the populace. He hopes to find an opportunity for vengeance at the coming ball. Eisenstein accepts the invitation, and telling his wife he is going to prison, and taking a mournful farewell of her and the maid Adèle, hastens with Falke to the ball. After his departure Rosalinde, his wife, is visited by a former admirer, the singing teacher, Alfred, whose behaviour is rather free. The night has set in and Frank, the governor of the prison, has come to take Eisenstein to jail. He finds Alfred taking his ease attired in a smoking jacket, and he, in order not to compromise Rosalinde, moved by her prayers, is induced to represent himself as Eisenstein and to accompany Frank. Falke, who has received plein pouvoir from Prince Orlofsky, has also invited the governor of the prison, Frank, the maid Adèle, and to complete the joke, Rosalinde, to be his guests at the ball. The latter, in order to observe her husband, appears masked. She is introduced by Falke as an Hungarian countess, and succeeds during an amorous tête-à-tête in abstracting from the pockets of her husband his valuable watch, to use in the future as evidence of his impropriety. Frank has paid court to Adèle, and the next morning they all find themselves in prison, when the confusion increases, for Falke has introduced Eisenstein as Marquis Renard, Frank as Chevalier Chagrin and Adèle as an actress. It is still further increased by the jailer, Frosch, who has profited by the absence of the prison director to become gloriously drunk. Adèle arrives to obtain the assistance of the Chevalier Chagrin, Eisenstein to begin his prison term, Alfred wants to get out of jail, Rosalinde to commence action for divorce, and Frank is still intoxicated. Frosch locks up Adèle and her sister Ida, and the height of the tumult has been reached when Falke arrives with all the guests of the ball and declares the whole as an act of vengeance for the "Fledermaus." Everything is amicably arranged, but Eisenstein is compelled to serve his full term in jail. Suborders Megachiroptera Microchiroptera See text for families. ...

Musical numbers

Act I. Apartments of Eisenstein. Alfred serenades his former sweetheart. ("Dove, that has escaped.") Adèle has received the invitation to the ball ("My sister Ida writes to me"), and asks for leave of absence. Eisenstein comes to Rosalinde in altercation with his attorney. (Terzett: "Well, with such an attorney.") Falke brings the invitation to the ball. (Duet: "Come with me to the souper.") Eisenstein’s farewell to Rosalinde and Adèle. (Terzett with the refrain: "Oh dear, oh dear, how sorry I am.") Alfred arrives. (Finale, drinking song: "Happy is he who forgets"; Rosalinde’s defence when Frank arrives: "In tête-à-tête with me so late," and Frank’s invitation: "My beautiful, large bird-cage.")

Act II. Summer house in the villa Orlovsky. (Chorus: "A souper is before us.") Departure of the chorus, introduction of Eisenstein and song of the prince. ("I love to invite my friends.") Eisenstein meets Adèle. (Ensemble and song of Adèle: "My dear marquis.") Falke leaves Rosalinde to Eisenstein. (Watch duet: "My eyes will soon be dim.") The company approaches, Rosalinde is introduced as an Hungarian. (Czardas: "Sounds from home" and finale. Drinking song: "In the fire stream of the grape"; canon: "Brothers, brothers and sisters"; Ballet; waltz finale, "Ha, what joy, what a night of delight.")

Act III. Office of the governor at the prison. Appearance of Frank. (Melodrama; Couplet of Adèle: "I am an innocent from the country"; Terzett between Rosalinde, Eisenstein, Alfred: "A strange adventure"; and finale, "Oh bat, oh bat, at last let thy victim escape.")

Film adaptations

Die Fledermaus has been adapted numerous times for the cinema and for TV:

  directed by Eisenstein Rosalinde Adele Orlofsky Frosch
Germany, 1923 (silent movie) Max Mack Harry Liedtke Eva May Lya De Putti -?- -?-
France/Germany, 1931 Carl Lamac -?- -?- -?- -?- -?-
UK, 1933 (entitled Waltz Time) Wilhelm Thiele Fritz Schulz Evelyn Laye Gina Malo George Baker Jay Laurier
Germany, 1937 Paul Verhoeven -?- -?- -?- -?- -?-
Germany, 1945 (released 1946) Géza von Bolváry Johannes Heesters Marte Harell Dorit Kreysler Siegfried Breuer Josef Egger
East Germany, 1955 (entitled Rauschende Melodien) E. W. Fiedler Erich Arnold Jarmila Ksirová Sonja Schöner Gerd Frickhöffer Josef Egger
West Germany, 1959 (TV) Kurt Wilhelm Friedrich Schoenfelder -?- -?- -?- -?-
Austria, 1962 Géza von Cziffra Peter Alexander Marianne Koch Marika Rökk Boy Gobert Hans Moser
Denmark, 1968 (entitled Flagermusen) John Price Poul Reichhardt Birgitte Bruun Ellen Winther Susse Wold Buster Larsen
West Germany, 1972 Otto Schenk Eberhard Wächter Gundula Janowitz Renate Holm Wolfgang Windgassen Otto Schenk
UK, 1984 (TV) Humphrey Burton Hermann Prey Kiri Te Kanawa Hildegard Heichele Doris Soffel Josef Meinrad
West Germany, 1986 Brian Large Eberhard Wächter Pamela Coburn Janet Perry Brigitte Fassbaender Franz Muxeneder
UK, 1990 Humphrey Burton Louis Otey Nancy Gustafson Judith Howarth Jochen Kowalski John Sessions
Australia, 1997 Lindy Hume Anthony Warlow Gillian Sullivan Amelia Farrugia Suzanne Johnston Geoff Kelso
France, 2001 (entitled La chauve-souris) Don Kent Christoph Homberger Mireille Delunsch Malin Hartelius David Moss Elisabeth Trissenaar

Silent Movie is a 1976 comedy film directed by and starring Mel Brooks. ... Lya De Putti (Amalia Putty) (January 10, 1899 - November 27, 1931) was as international film actress of the silent era, noted for her portrayal of vamp characters. ... Evelyn Laye, OBE (July 10, 1900 - February 17, 1996) was a British theatre actress. ... George Baker (10 February 1885 - 8 January 1976) was an English singer. ... Paul Verhoeven in 2004 in a documentary on Z Channel Paul Verhoeven (born July 18, 1938) is a Dutch-born film director best known for his sometimes extremely violent science fiction films. ... Heesters in the good old days Johannes Heesters (born December 5, 1903) is a Dutch actor, singer, and entertainer who can look back on an 83-year career, almost exclusively in the German-speaking world. ... Peter Alexander (born Peter Alexander Ferdinand Maximilian Neumayer June 30, 1926 in Vienna, Austria), is an Austrian singer and actor, who became popular in the 1950s and 60s with his numerous roles in German musical films. ... Rökk in 1939 with one of her favourite partners, Johannes Heesters Marika Rökk (November 3, 1913 - May 16, 2004) was an Egyptian-born singer, dancer and actress of Hungarian descent. ... Hans Moser as a waiter in a café in Vienna in the movie Ober zahlen (1957) Hans Moser (August 6, 1880 – June 19, 1964) was an Austrian actor who, during his long career (from the 1920s up to his death), mainly played in comedy films. ... John Sidney Ernest Price (born July 22, 1937, Harrow, London) is a former English cricketer who played in 15 Tests from 1964 to 1972. ... Poul David Reichhardt (February 2, 1913 – October 31, 1985) was a Danish actor, well known for his roles in Danish 1940s/50s comedies. ... Susse Wold (November 17, 1938 - ) is a stage and screen actress whose career has spanned five decades. ... Eberhard Wächter may refer to one of the following persons: Eberhard Wächter (1762-1852) was a German painter Eberhard Wächter (1929-1992) was an Austrian opera singer This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Gundula Janowitz (born August 2, 1937 in Berlin, Germany) was one of the greatest lyric sopranos in modern history, renowned for her magnificent tone -- often described as creamy or silvery -- and her vocal control at the top of her range. ... Hermann Prey (July 11, 1929 – July 22, 1998) was a German bass-baritone. ... Kiri Te Kanawa Dame Kiri Te Kanawa ONZ AC DBE (born March 6, 1944), is an internationally famous New Zealand opera singer. ... Josef Meinrad (April 21, 1913 - February 18, 1996) was a famous Austrian actor. ... Eberhard Wächter may refer to one of the following persons: Eberhard Wächter (1762-1852) was a German painter Eberhard Wächter (1929-1992) was an Austrian opera singer This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Brigitte Fassbaender was born on 3 July 1939 in Berlin. ... Nancy Gustafson (1956 - ) is an American opera singer. ... John Sessions (born January 11, 1953 in Largs, North Ayrshire) is a Scottish actor best known for his comedy work in improvisation shows like Whose Line Is It Anyway?. A gifted impressionist, he worked on Spitting Image and later the surreal celeb soap opera Stella Street. ... John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John and Anthony Warlow in their concert tour The Main Event. (CD) Anthony Warlow (born November 18, 1961) in Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia, is an Australian star of opera and musical theatre. ... Mireille Delunsch (born 1962 in Mulhouse) is a french opera singer (soprano). ...

Recent productions

Over the decades, the non-singing role of Frosch, the drunken jailer, who first appears in Act III, has come to be seen as the comic highlight of each production. Accordingly, casting usually pays special attention to that character, and Frosch is almost always played by a well-known and much-loved comedian. In the performing arts, casting is a vital pre-production process for selecting a cast of actors, dancers, singers, and other talent for a live or recorded performance. ...

In many modern productions, the role of Prince Orlofsky is played by a woman.

While being the show traditionally performed in theatres on New Year's Eve, Die Fledermaus has recently also seen more provocative productions, for example the one directed by Hans Neuenfels at the 2001 Salzburg Festival. With the action transposed into the 1920s, the ball at Orlofsky's metamorphoses into an orgy where decadent guests preferring cocaine to champagne meet some of the harbingers of Nazism — a place where any waltz immediately becomes a waltz into darkness. The scandal had been announced by artistic director Gérard Mortier, but nevertheless part of the audience reacted with fierce criticism. Among the critics was a 57-year-old general practitioner who, supported by Austria's authority on opera, Marcel Prawy, at least one tabloid, and the Austrian Freedom Party, sued the Salzburg Festival, demanding his money back. The ensuing trial triggered a heated debate on the state of the freedom of the arts in Austria. New Years Eve is a celebration held the day before New Years Day, on December 31, the final day of the Gregorian year. ... 2001: A Space Odyssey. ... The Salzburg Festival is a prominent music festival in the Austrian town of Salzburg, the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. ... The 1920s were a decade sometimes referred to as the Jazz Age or the Roaring Twenties, usually applied to America. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Decadence was the name given, first by hostile critics, and then triumphantly adopted by some writers themselves, to a number of late nineteenth century fin de siècle writers associated with Symbolism or the Aesthetic movement. ... This article is about the drug Cocaine. ... Champagne is often drunk as part of a celebration Champagne is a sparkling wine produced by inducing the in-bottle secondary fermentation of wine to effect carbonation. ... The term National Socialism has been used in self-description by a number of different political groups and ideologies, some of which have no connection with the Nazis; see National socialism (disambiguation). ... A general practitioner (GP) or family physician (FP) is a physician/medical doctor who provides primary care. ... The foyer of Charles Garniers Opéra, Paris, opened 1875 Opera refers to a dramatic art form, originating in Europe, in which the emotional content or primary entertainment is conveyed to the audience as much through music, both vocal and instrumental, as it is through the lyrics. ... Marcel Horace Frydman, Ritter von Prawy (born December 29, 1911 in Vienna - February 23, 2003 in Vienna) was an Austrian dramaturg, opera connoisseur and opera critic. ... Newspaper sizes in August 2005. ... The Austrian Freedom Party (Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs, abbreviated to FPÖ) is an Austrian political party usually associated with the name of Jörg Haider. ...

A production that opened on June 22, 2005, at the Belgrade National Theatre, Serbia was directed by Plamen Kartaloff. The costumes, designed by noted Serbian painter and sculptor Olja Ivanjicki, together with the choreography alluded to the "Fledermaus" as Batman. This was the sixth production of Die Fledermaus in Belgrade since it had its premiere there on May 26, 1907. June 22 is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 192 days remaining. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Serbia and Montenegro  â€“ Serbia    â€“ Kosovo and Metohia        (UN administration)    â€“ Vojvodina  â€“ Montenegro Official language Serbian1 Capital Belgrade Independence Declared from the Ottoman Empire Gained autonomy 1817 Independence July 13, 1878 Area – Total – % water 88,361 km² n/a Population – Total (2002) (not including data for Kosovo and Metohia Province) – Density 7. ... This article needs to be wikified. ... The DC Comics superhero Batman (originally and still sometimes referred to as the Batman or the Bat-Man) is a fictional character who first appeared in Detective Comics #27 in May 1939. ... Mayor Nenad Bogdanović Area 359. ... May 26 is the 146th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (147th in leap years). ... 1907 (MCMVII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...


  • The outline of the plot was taken from The Opera Goer's Complete Guide by Leo Melitz (1921).

1921 (MCMXXI) was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ...

Referenced in pop culture

Fledermaus is also Batman's user name on the DC universe's version of Ebay (as seen in Green Arrow #33, current series). Die Fledermaus was also the name of the Batman-like superhero parodied in The Tick cartoon. Contrary to popular belief it was not Die Fledermaus that was featured in the film Batman Begins but Mefistofele, during a show the young Bruce Wayne is watching. The DC Comics superhero Batman (originally and still sometimes referred to as the Batman or the Bat-Man) is a fictional character who first appeared in Detective Comics #27 in May 1939. ... The Tick is a comedic superhero, created by Ben Edlund in 1986. ... Batman Begins (2005) is an American film based on the comic book character created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. ... Mefistofele is the only completed opera by the Italian composer Arrigo Boito. ... For other uses, see Batman (disambiguation). ...

In Kevin Smith's Mallrats, during the "Truth or Date" game show, Gil Hicks includes a viewing of Die Fledermaus in his description of a perfect date. Mallrats is a 1995 film written and directed by Kevin Smith. ...

External links

  • Libretto to Die Fledermaus in the original German with a literal English translation from Aria-Database.com
  • List of upcoming performances from major opera companies from Operabase.com

  Results from FactBites:
Die Fledermaus (The Tick) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (311 words)
Die Fledermaus is a version of Batman wearing a brown and light brown costume.
Die Fledermaus is German for "The Bat." The appellation was most likely given due to the popularity of the Johann Strauss II opera, Die Fledermaus and is pronounced as such (not as it appears in English).
Throughout the animated series, it is implied that Die Fledermaus and the superheroine American Maid once had a rather intimate relationship, but broke up some time before the start of the animated series.
Die Fledermaus - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1277 words)
The original source for Die Fledermaus is a farce by German playwright Julius Roderich Benedix (1811–1873), Das Gefängnis (The Prison).
Fledermaus is also Batman's user name on the DC universe's version of Ebay (as seen in Green Arrow #33, current series).
Die Fledermaus was also the name of the Batman-like superhero parodied in The Tick cartoon.
  More results at FactBites »



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