Castiglione Garfagnana Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II

The Merry Widow by F. Lehar

See the article in La Nazione Lucca

Musica Novecento Theatre Company,

M. Stefano Giaroli– director.

Starts at 21:00

Booking is appreciated. Green Pass obligatory. Information and bookings: Roberto Tamagnini 338 564 5037

The Operetta

The Merry Widow is story about love, intrigue and reconciliation.

 The librettists were Leo Stein and Victor Leon and the composer was Franz Lehar.

It was first performed at the theatre Am Wien in Vienna on the 30th December 1905 where it ran for 438 performances. It still remains an important part of today’s operetta repertoire. It has also been adapted for ballet and film.


ACT 1 The Embassy of Pontevedro Paris.

A young wealthy widow, Hanna Glawari, from Pontevedro, a poor Balkan country, has the power to bankrupt the country if she marries a Frenchman. The envoy Baron Zeta attempts to persuade a fellow country man Count Danilo to marry the widow. Although he is attracted to her the Count refuses to marry her for her money. The widow’s attentions to the Count, does not change his mind. Meanwhile Baron Zeta’s young wife, Valencienne is flirting with a young Frenchman Camille de Rosillon.

Act 11 The widow’s garden the next evening.

 At her Parisian home the widow hosts a party with folk dancers and singers. Hanna and Danilo make light of romance, denying their feelings for each other. Valencienne deflects Camille’s attentions writing on her fan, ‘I am a respectable wife.’ However she agrees to meet him in the summerhouse. Zeta spying on them is enraged. Hanna with the assistance of an embassy clerk, takes Valencienne’s place. When Hanna and Camille emerge from the summer house they pretend to be engaged. Danilo is furious and goes off to Maxims.

Act 111 Maxims

Hanna follows Danilo to Maxims.The girls and Valencienne perform the dance from Maxims. Hanna and Danilo confess their mutual love. Meanwhile Zeta finds Valencienne’s fan which proves she was in the summer house, but when he reads what she wrote on the fan he is reassured. With the two couples happily united, Ponteverians and French alike reflect on how difficult it is to understand women.

Musica Novecento Theatre Company

The Compagnia Teatro Musica Novecento was founded in 1995 in Reggio Emilia by a group of established artists in the theatrical, lyric and operettist fields, with important experience gained in the most prestigious Operetta and Prose companies, as well as in important opera organizations.

Encouraged by the strong reception received with its first production, La Vedova Allegra by Franz Lehár, the Novecento Music Theater Company has embarked on a path of research, enhancement and modernization in the context of the Operetta genre.
Cin-Ci-Là, Il Paese dei Campanelli, Al Cavallino Bianco, La Principessa della Czarda, Scugnizza and L'Acqua Cheta, together with the aforementioned Vedova Allegra, are the top titles that have led the Company to perform in the best squares and theaters of Italy in more than twenty years of full activity.

What immediately characterised the Compagnia Teatro Musica Novecento and which was strongly appreciated by the public and critics is a choral vision of the show, in which all the elements have a particular characterization and a specific importance, also by virtue of small skilful adjustments in a more modern key to traditional scripts.

A distinctive element of the Company is live music: Teatro Musica Novecento is in fact one of the very few Operetta companies in Italy that can boast of the presence of the live orchestra in every show, thanks to the close collaboration with the Orchestra. Art Yards.


06 Aug 2021




Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, Castiglione di Garfagnana Lucca

History: The origin of the town dates back to a Roman castra, called Castrum Leonis, ("Lion's Castle"), built to command the valley that leads to the San Pellegrino Pass, the easiest access for armies over the Apennines. The fortress later developed under the Lombard and Frank dominations. In 1170 it was besieged by the Republic of Lucca. Castiglione surrendered, but the high taxes imposed led the city to form a league with other communes in the Garfagnana against Lucca. In 1227 Castiglione was again besieged and suffered further destruction by Lucchese soldiers. Political conflicts continued in the following years, until a peace was reached in 1371: Lucca gained definitive control of Castiglione, and established a permanent administrator. The defences were upgraded by widening the town walls. During the 15th century Castiglione was one of the few communities in the Garfagnana that did not submit to the Este family, instead remaining loyal to the Republic of Lucca. Throughout the wars against the Estensi, the fortress was again besieged, in particular in 1603 and 1613. There then followed a long period of peace, marred only by boundary disputes with the neighbouring communes. The Congress of Vienna (1815) assigned Castiglione to Marie Louise of Bourbon, Grand Duchess of Lucca, who in 1819 gave it to Francis IV of Modena. Main sights: Castiglione's most striking attraction is the Medieval bridge built by Spinetta Malaspina in the 13th century. The town is also famous for its well-preserved 13th-century medieval walls with large towers (the Torrioni) and the castle (Rocca). The church of San Pietro was erected in 723 by two Lombard brothers, Aurinand and Gudifrid, but was largely rebuilt in the 12th century by Bishop Guido III of Lucca. San Michele (14th century) is the other main holy building of the town. Both churches use wall towers as their belfries. Walking through the cemetery at Castiglione it is sobering to see how many young men were killed on the Eastern front during the second world war. The Church of San Pellegrino (in the frazione of the same name), at 1,400 metres (4,600 ft) and commanding the valley of the Serchio river, houses the mortal remains of St. Pellegrino and St. Bianco.