Dutch National Opera presents


This show was to been seen in April 2014

Comedy about money vs. love


Richard Strauss
Lyrische Komödie in drei Aufzügen, op. 79
Libretto by Hugo von Hofmannsthal
World premiere 1 July 1933, Staatsoper, Dresden


New production for Dutch National Opera
Premiere 11 April 2014
Original production Göteborgs Operan (2006) and Oper Frankfurt (2009)

The brilliant Viennese comedy Arabella was the last collaboration of the famous duo Richard Strauss (composer) and Hugo van Hofmannsthal (librettist). Arabella is seldom staged, which makes these performances all the more unique.

In short

The Waldner family is flat broke. Only a lucrative marriage of the elder daughter, Arabella, can offer a way out. For the younger child, Zdenka, marriage seems entirely out of the question. After a series of hilarious developments and mistaken identities, Arabella becomes engaged to the man she loves: Count Mandryka, who incidentally is also extremely rich. Even Zdenka lands on her feet.


Arabella productiefoto 2013 3
Monika Rittershaus ©
Arabella productiefoto 2 2013
Monika Rittershaus ©
Arabella productiefoto 1 2013
Monika Rittershaus ©
Behind the scenes Arabella - Marc Albrecht

The production
This original production by Gothenburg Opera and Oper Franfurt is new for Dutch National Opera. Chief conductor Marc Albrecht teams up with the high-profile stage director Christof Loy, who has created a sober staging. There are no realistic details in the decor, but rather suggestions which leave much to the audience's imagination. Arabella is sung by Jacquelyn Wagner (DNO debut), who replaces Annette Dasch; Zdenka by Agneta Eichenholz; and their mother Adelaide by Charlotte Margiono, whose return to the stage will delight her many fans.


Team, Cast and Chorus

Marc Albrecht

Stage Director 
Christof Loy

Set & Costume Designer 
Herbert Murauer
Lighting Designer 
Reinhard Traub
Thomas Wilhelm
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra
Dutch National Opera Chorus

Chorus Master 
Frank Hameleers
Graf Waldner  
Alfred Reiter

Charlotte Margiono
Jacquelyn Wagner
Agneta Eichenholz
James Rutherford
Will Hartmann
Graf Elemer  
Marcel Reijans
Graf Dominik 
Roger Smeets
Graf Lamoral  
Thomas Dear
Die Fiakermilli  
Susanne Elmark

Eine Kartenaufschlägerin  
Ursula Hesse von den Steinen

Richard Meijer
Ein Zimmerkellner 
Richard Prada


Successful world premiere
Arabella was composed against the menacing background of the rise of Nazism, and librettist Hofmannsthal died under tragic circumstances in 1929, before the work was completed. Perhaps the opera's rousingly successful premiere in Dresden in 1933 can thus be seen as a small mercy, like the fact that it was the first opera to be broadcast by German as well as foreign radio stations. 

Romance and humour in balance
Arabella is light-hearted music theatre along the lines of the better-known Strauss-Hofmannsthal collaboration Der Rosenkavalier. Money-grubbers are made to look foolish, and true love ultimately prevails. The plot would not be out of place in a Hollywood musical, but it is nevertheless genuine opera. Strauss wrote splendid vocal lines and a colourful orchestra score, elements which both support the storyline. Romance and humour are nicely balanced, while melancholy contrasts with delight.


Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra|Netherlands Chamber Orchestra

The Netherlands’ finest orchestras are invited to accompany DNO productions. Our regular partner is the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra|Netherlands Chamber Orchestra. Under former chief conductor Hartmut Haenchen the orchestra cemented its excellent reputation with Der Ring des Nibelungen. In 2014-2015: Gurre-Lieder, Lohengrin, La bohème and Macbeth (Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra); Il viaggio a Reims and Die Zauberflöte (Netherlands Chamber Orchestra).




Every performance of National Opera & Ballet is preceded by an introductory talk. Learn more, enjoy more.

The introduction begins 45 minutes before curtain and is held in the foyer of the second balcony. The introduction is free of charge to everyone attending the performance, and amplification is used to enhance audibility. Several days prior to the premiere, the introduction will be made available digitally as a podcast. Check the performance page of the production in question to see if the podcast has already been made available.

CMS is European partner of Dutch National Opera since 2011.

    Tue 21 Jan De Telegraaf, 14 april 2014

    **** Goed bezette kleinere rollen, hecht teamwork: weinig wensen blijven onvervuld.

    Sun 16 Feb Frankfurter Neue Presse, 2012

    ‘Christof Loy made a great success of Arabella by directing this lyrical comedy with the intensity of a psychological drawing-room drama.’