Imre Kálmán

Kaiserin Josephine

concert version opera 12

June 16., Wednesday 19:00

Erkel Theatre – Main stage

Operetta in two acts, in German with Hungarian and English surtitles

Concert performance

Emmerich Kálmán’s rarely played operetta deals with the story of Napoleon Bonaparte and his love, Josephine Beauharnais, intertwining many historical facts with poetic license. Librettists Paul Knepler and Géza Herczeg present the characters in a kind of Cinderella story, flavoured with Parisian balls, Italian campaigns  and a whole lot of love, jealousy and tremendous (military) victories.
Kálmán’s music simultaneously supports and complements this diversity: musically the material is made up of many layers from the gavotte to the military march, and from the humorous duets – crucial to any operetta – to the amorous arias flowing full of emotion.
As the Hungarian News of Prague wrote after its 1936 world premiere in Zurich: “Kaiserin Josephine is yet another great operetta of sweeping power in which there are none of the familiar hits, but instead a musical background to the text – which is in any case this time a serious dramatic plot – composed with magnificent invention. The operetta, like every composition of Kálmán’s, includes massive scenes to conclude the individual acts, extraordinary beautiful songs and a bounty of melody in all of the music.”
Repaying the debt of many year’s standing, the work is now going to make its debut in concert format on the Eiffel Art Studios’ live streaming stage.This performance is available free of charge on the


Erkel Theatre – Main stage
June 16, 2021
Start time
7 p.m.
End time
9:30 p.m.
Paul Knepler Géza Herczeg
Artistic director
Sylvie Gábor
Eszter Orbán
Chorus director
Gábor Csiki


Premiere: June 16, 2021

Erkel Theatre – Main stage