Kiss me, Kate!
Kiss me, Kate!

Sala Teatrului Național de Operetă și Musical „Ion Dacian”

3 November 2024 at 18:00

The Ion Dacian National Operetta and Musical Theatre brings to the stage a very special musical title: “Kiss me, Kate!” with music by the famous Cole Porter and a libretto by Sam and Bella Spewack.

Interest in musicals at the Operetta Theatre is by no means recent. The famous tenor Ion Dacian, whose name this theatre proudly bears, staged “My Fair Lady” by Frederick Loewe shortly after its world premiere. Then, in the '70s, the musical “Oklahoma” by Richard Rodgers was staged. Later followed “Hello, Dolly!” by Jerry Herman, two different productions of “West Side Story” by Leonard Bernstein, and in recent years, box office success was ensured, among others, by the famous staging of “Romeo and Juliet” by Gérard Presgurvic, “Rebecca” by Sylvester Levay, and the record-breaking title worldwide, “The Phantom of the Opera” by the well-known Andrew Lloyd Webber.

The case of “Kiss me, Kate!” is a very special one. This title is among the few that have had enormous success from the world premiere in 1948 until today, in America and various parts of the world. But it is not the success that defines this title so much as the fame of being one of those classic works of the genre that hold the “golden rule”, without which the musical comedy, or “musical”, as it is briefly called, could not exist. This “golden rule” was established with the advent of a title that, paradoxically, is much closer to the operetta genre. This is “Show Boat” by Jerome Kern, which highlights the birth and finalization of this type of performance. Following what composers from earlier times sought to achieve ( Christoph Willibard Gluck, Claudio Monteverdi, Richard Wagner) namely, a total syncretism of all the arts that make up the stage show, the musical contains seemingly facile music, grafted on the influences of Afro-American-Indian music, especially jazz, often strongly rhythmic. It is the line that marks love duets of rare delicacy and languorous romance, or devilish dances that hardly let spectators refrain from jumping out of their seats. The element of comedy is permanently present through the actorly situational comedy, conducted with the precision of a Swiss watch. The scenic image is, as in operetta, one of opulence and a special luxury, meant to relax and take the viewer far from everyday worries. It has even been said that the musical was born as a “recipe” to save the American people from the crisis of the ’20s.

Kiss me, Kate!” adheres to this “golden rule” with perfect strictness. The lively musical numbers alternate with acting scenes where artists can showcase their stage talent. The dances are abundant, culminating in a dance ensemble in the second act. Situational comedy is not missing, being present in a more refined form from beginning to end. Hence, humor is not only present for some characters but distributed among all, so that the “gags” flow like in a cascade. Comedy always has, as its antithesis, tragedy. Thus, tense scenes are never absent. And for balance, romance makes its appearance and resolves everything. The first part is always longer than the second. The show ends with an almost invariant “happy end”. From start to finish, everything flows with such high energy and tension that the viewer doesn't even notice when the performance ends. The verve and good mood are at home.

The notoriety of this title is highlighted by its new production debuting in January 2019 at the Opera in Gratz, Austria. And in the spring of the same year, a revival took place on Broadway, with the famous Kelli O'Hara in the leading role.

The uniqueness of the libretto lies in the astonishing parallel between a couple of stars and the roles they play in Shakespeare's comedy “The Taming of the Shrew”, also known as “The Shrew”. Revealing life behind the curtain, with the effervescent preparations for staging a show, placing at the forefront the sharp exchange of words between the recently divorced protagonists – Fred and Lilly – but also comic instances in which they are placed, the scenes taken from the master's comedy from Stratford-upon-Avon only serve to show that his characters are almost identical in behavior and attitudes and, especially, that they go through similar situations.

Kiss me, Kate!” is one of the most challenging titles in the genre's literature. The stage performance is demanded at the highest levels, both in dance, singing, and acting. It is demanded equally of both soloists and ensembles. Therefore, the scores are very complex and must be treated with the utmost seriousness. Physical training is not one of the lesser elements of this preparation. Our theatre's ensembles have this training and an immense desire to surpass themselves. The satisfaction is, however, proportional. This show can be worked on with dedication and great pleasure.

That is why the choice of this title was a challenge for all of us. I sincerely hope that the test of meeting the audience will be passed with flying colors, by each one individually and all of us together.

Translation of the libretto and musical text adaptation - Rodica and Cezar Helmis

Music and lyrics : Cole Porter
Translation and adaptation : Rodica & Cezar Helmis

Musical direction
: Constantin Grigore / Alexandru Ilie
Chorus conductor : Aurel Muraru

Artistic direction, scenography and lighting design
: Cătălin Ionescu Arbore
Assistant director
: Valentino Tiron
: Mălina Andrei
Choreography assistants : Eugenia Stoian, Sorina

Conductor: Alexandru Ilie


Fred Graham / Petruchio – Cătălin Petrescu
Harry Trevor / Baptista – Alexandru Onea
Lois Lane / Bianca – Mediana Vlad
Ralph – Marius Meragiu
Lilli Vanessi / Katarina – Amelia Antoniu
Hattie – Oana Rusu
Pops – Alois Doboș
Paul – Adrian Nour
Bill Calhoun / Lucenzio – Florin Budnaru
Man 1 – Orest Pîslariu - Ranghilof
Man 2 – Valentino Tiron
Harrison Howell – Anton Zidaru
Actor 1 / Hortensio – Victor Bucur
Actor 2 / Gremio – Andrei Pleșca
The Choreographer – Lorendi Rădulescu
Technician 1 / Flynt / The Cook – Alexandru Vasile
Technician 2 / Philip / Riley – Răzvan Rusu
Technician 3 / Gregory / The General's Driver – George Matei
Taxi Driver / Nathaniel – Victor Bunea
The Wardrobe Mistress – Carmen Angheloiu
The Merchant – Mihăiță Radu

Duration of the show : 3h and 30' ( 1 intermission )

To ensure the comfort of the spectators in the auditorium, children under the age of 10 are not allowed at the performances of the Ion Dacian National Operetta and Musical Theatre, except for those dedicated to them, where the age limit will be established for each show individually.
Diamond - 150,00 lei
Gold - 120,00 lei
Silver - 100,00 lei
Bronze - 80,00 lei
Bronze - 80,00 lei
Bronze / Reducere Pensionari - 40,00 lei
Bronze / Reducere Elevi/Studenti - 20,00 lei
Gray seats are occupied.
Bulevardul Octavian Goga Nr.1 Sector 3
Kiss me, Kate!, 3 November 2024
Teatrul National de Opereta si Musical Ion Dacian, Bucuresti
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