23.10.2017 | 19:30 | Stadttheater Wiener Neustadt
Gräfin Mariza (Countess Maritza) is an operetta in three acts composed by Hungarian composer Emmerich Kálmán
Place: Hungary: the manor and estate of the Countess Maritza
Time: Around 1920.
Manja the gypsy girl flirts with the newly appointed bailiff, Béla Törek. Unknown to anyone, Törek is in fact the impoverished Count Tassilo, who is seeking to earn a living and set aside some cash for the dowry of his sister Lisa. The Countess Maritza, a young widow, unexpectedly arrives at the estate to celebrate her engagement. This `engagement` is however quite fictitious, an invention intended to put off her numerous followers. The name she has chosen for her suitor, based on her recollection of Strauss` operetta, The Gypsy Baron, is Baron Koloman Zsupán. However, amongst Maritza`s guests, to Tassilo`s horror, is Lisa, who he instructs to keep their relationship and his identity strictly secret. Maritza is also embarrassed when a genuine Koloman Zsupán materialises, having seen an announcement of his `engagement` in the press.
Tassilo is heard by the guests singing an air `Komm, Zigány` (`Come, gypsies!`), which he ends with a czardas. Maritza orders him to repeat it; he refuses, and the angry countess announces that he is fired. Manja predicts that The Countess will be very happy in love. `One moon will pass over this Earth and Maritza will find her happiness`, she sings. Maritza therefore decides to remain on her estate. She stops Tassilo from leaving and apologises.
Zsupan has meanwhile decided that he prefers Lisa to Maritza, whilst Maritza is increasingly attracted to Tassilo. However, the ageing Lothario Populescu reveals to Maritza Tassilo`s identity, and moreover alleges that Lisa is his girlfriend. Maritza in a high temper insults Tassilo, who declares that he will leave. However, before he goes, the repentant Maritza writes him a `reference` which is in fact a proposal of marriage. The operetta ends with Maritza and Tassilo, and Zsupan and Lisa, engaged.