Context


Johann Strauss had already become famous for his dance music, most notably his waltzes, and Die Fledermaus is one of his most famous operettas, often included in seasons as a holiday special. Originally a German play by Julius Roderich Benedix called Das Geflangnis (The Prison). Another version of the play was a French version by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy that was performed as a French vaudeville. This translation was translated into German by Karl Haffner, to be performed as a play. Richard Genée then stepped in with Strauss to adapt this French version into the operetta, but setting is in a Viennese ball rather than a New Year’s Eve party. After being successfully performed in Vienna, it later was performed quite often across Europe and then in the U.S. This operetta is often done in various translations, and also has been done with different languages for the sung moments versus the spoken dialogue.

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