Der Zigeunerbaron

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Der Zigeunerbaron ("The Gypsy Baron") is a German operetta in three acts by Johann Strauss II (1825–1899)[1], with libretto by Ignaz Schnitzer (1839-1921)[2].

The original text

The story, of the marriage of a landowner returned from exile and a gypsy girl, who is revealed as the daughter of a Turkish pasha and the rightful owner of a hidden treasure, the libretto is based on the Hungarian novel Saffi by Moritz (Mór) Jokai ()[], and the operetta was first performed in the Theater an den Wien in Vienna on 24 October 1885 and published in 1886.

Translations and adaptations

First performed in the USA at the Casino Theatre, New York on 15 February, 1886 with an English libretto by Sydney Rosenfeld

Performed in England on 12 February 1935 in an amateur production and on 10 March 1938 at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham, as part of the Carl Rosa Opera Company's spring season.

Performed 9 June 1964 at Sadler's Wells Theatre, London with a libretto by Geoffrey Dunn;

Performance history in South Africa

1953: Performed by the Johannesburg Operatic and Dramatic Society (JODS)

1962: Performed by the Port Elizabeth Gilbert & Sullivan Society in the Port Elizabeth Opera House .

1963: Performed by the Witwatersrand University's Choral Society in the Wits Great Hall.

1966: Presented by NAPAC Opera; presented by PACOFS Opera.

1988: Performed by the School of Music of the University of the Witwatersrand in The Wits Theatre in May and June, with an English libretto by Ruth and Thomas Martin. Directed by Dawie Coezyn, conducted by Walter Mony with voice coaching by Joyce Barker, musical supervision by Michael Strauss, designs by Paul Roumanoff and choreography by Wally Green. The stage director was Johan Kupferburger. The production was endowed by the JODS Trust.


Programme of the 1988 production by the Wits School of Music.

Alexandra Xenia Sabina Mossolow. 2003. The career of South African soprano Nellie du Toit, born 1929. Unpublished Masters thesis. University of Stellenbosch.

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