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by Sigmund Romberg

Book and Lyrics by Dorothy Donnelly

Based on the play Old Heidelberg, by Wilhelm Meyer-Förster

May 13, 14, 20, 21, 2023 at 3 PM
sneak-peek May 9, 2023 at 7 PM


Conducted by Gregory Ortega
Staged by Linda Lehr

Performed in English with English supertitles

The Cast

Prince Karl Franz – Oswaldo Iraheta (May 9, 13, & 21), Ganson Salmon (May 14 & 20)
Kathie – Vianca Alejandra (May 13 & 21), Tate Chu (May 9, 14, & 20)
Dr. Engel – Damian Norfleet (May 13 & 21), Jeff Goble (May 9, 14, & 20)
Princess Margaret – Sophia Mortensen (May 9, 13, & 20), Lena Haleem (May 14 & 21)
Ruder – Paul Fraccalvieri
Detlef – Jax Hassler (May 13 & 21), Nikhil Krishna (May 9, 14, & 20)
Von Asterberg – Lindell Carter (May 9, 13, & 21), Chance Polic (May 14 & 20)
Lucas – BK Mitchell
Capt. Tarnitz - Nicholas Austin Schommer
Gretchen – Isabel Springer (May 13, 20, & 21),  Morgan Mooney (May 9 & 14)
Lutz – David Tillistrand (May 9, 13, & 21), Ethan Maxwell (May 14 & 20)
Hubert – Tati Pereira Colombo
Prime Minister Von Mark – Joseph Salvatore Knipper (May 9, 13, & 21), Yinka Olagbegi (May 14 & 20)
Grand Duchess Anastasia – Linda Lehr (May 9, 13, & 21), Christa Hylton (May 14 & 20)
Arnheim – Ian O’Malley (May 9, 13, & 21), Jeff Hylton (May 14 & 20)
Countess – Olivia Christopher (May 9, 13, & 21), Heather Antonissen (May 14 & 20)
Footman/Waiter – Thomas Geib, Patrick Blue
Toni – George Hylton


Alyssa Foli, Grant Mech, Wayne Olsen, Alycia Scott, Anthony Tolve

The Story

Act I - Spring 1885

Scene 1 - Antechamber, Palace of Karlsberg

Prince Karl Franz, heir to the throne of Karlsberg, has passed the entrance exam to the University of Heidelberg. Prime Minister Von Mark congratulates Karl Franz’s tutor, Dr. Engel, who has now been promoted to the Privy Council. Dr. Engel is to accompany Karl Franz to Heidelberg and keep him in line. But Dr. Engel is reluctant to spy on his pupil. When Karl Franz arrives, Von Mark reminds him that at the end of the school year, he is to be betrothed to his cousin, Princess Margaret, whom Karl Franz has never met. After Von Mark leaves, Dr. Engel tells Karl Franz that he refuses to be his jailor at the university and is resigning his post. But Karl Franz wants him to come along. Dr. Engel delights him with his reminiscences of his “Golden Days” at Heidelberg.

Scene 2 - Courtyard, Inn of the Three Golden Apples, Heidelberg

Gretchen and the other girls who work at the inn celebrate May with “Garlands Bright.” Ruder, the landlord, orders them back to work. He is anxious about Prince Karl Franz’s visit and is searching for his niece Kathie, who is supposed to greet the prince. A grand coach arrives, and Ruder mistakes Karl Franz’s valet, Lutz, for the prince. Hubert, Lutz’s valet, sets him right, but that doesn’t make Ruder any less nervous, for Lutz warns that he has enormous influence over the prince.

A crowd of students arrives, led by Detlef, Von Asterberg, and Lucas (“To the Inn We’re Marching”), and they toast the girls they love (“Drink! Drink! Drink!”). They then call for their favorite waitress, Kathie, to take their orders. She good-naturedly scolds them for not attending to their studies. As they toast her, Lutz arrives and angrily orders them to stop. Kathie tells the students to leave. Lutz, in a huff, tells her that they’re leaving the inn.

Prince Karl Franz and Dr. Engel arrive, thrilled to be in Heidelberg (“Heidelberg, Beloved Vision”). Kathie presents Karl Franz with a bouquet. He and Dr. Engel find her charming. Lutz tries to convince them to leave, but Karl Franz orders him to be silent and enters the inn. Dr. Engel and the students sing the famous student drinking song, “Gaudeamus Igitur,” and he once again recalls his “Golden Days.”

Karl Franz returns. He is determined to stay and makes the acquaintance of the students. Then he becomes acquainted with Kathie, who tells him that she’s engaged to her cousin in Vienna. But she and Karl Franz are falling in love (“Deep in My Heart, Dear”).

The students return and are thrilled that Karl Franz is joining their Saxon Corps. They make a toast to him and to Kathie (“Drink! Drink! Drink!” reprise). Then the Prince and Dr. Engel lead the students in a “Serenade.” Lutz interrupts them and begs the prince to leave. The students hound him until the prince stops them. Lutz rushes off, and everyone celebrates Springtime, youth, and love.

Act II - Four months later

The Prince’s Sitting Room at the Inn

Lutz and Hubert have been sitting up all night waiting for Karl Franz, who returns from his carousing with Dr. Engel and the students. They kick Lutz out and celebrate “Student Life,” after which they sink into sleep. Lutz returns in a panic with the news that the prince’s fiancée, Princess Margaret, has arrived with her mother, the Grand Duchess Anastasia. The students clear out and Karl Franz hurries into the bedroom to freshen up. The Duchess makes a grand entrance with the Princess and their escort, Captain Tarnitz, and is annoyed by the prince’s absence, while Lutz struggles to explain. When Karl Franz returns, the Duchess introduces him to her daughter. After an awkward exchange, Karl Franz is shocked to learn that his betrothal is to be announced immediately.

When the Duchess, the princess, and the captain leave, Karl Franz calls for Kathie in a panic and tells her he wants to elope to Paris with her. She agrees and rushes off to pack.

Lutz now arrives with the Prime Minister, who announces that the King is seriously ill and has ordered that the betrothal ceremony is to take place at his bedside. Karl Franz refuses, as Heidelberg has taught him to be free. Dr. Engel, having ascertained that the prince will be able to return to Heidelberg, convinces Karl Franz to comply, though he is sorry to leave (“Thoughts Will Come to Me”). Kathie arrives and is devastated to learn that Karl Franz is leaving, but she knows he must. She is convinced he will forget her, but he reassures her (“Deep in My Heart, Dear” reprise). He departs, leaving Dr. Engel to console her.

Act III - Two years later

Scene 1 - Antechamber, Palace of Karlsberg

As dancers whirl in the nearby ballroom, the Duchess, Countess Leydon, and Baron Arnheim talk about how Karl Franz’s betrothal to Princess Margaret was delayed for two years due to the old King’s death. They are sorry that Karl Franz - now the King - is not at the ball. Princess Margaret will have to dance with Captain Tarnitz instead. Lutz announces that supper is served. The Duchess detains him and demands to know where Karl Franz is. Lutz tells her that he is walking alone in the park - and that Princess Margaret is also walking, but with Captain Tarnitz. Lutz leaves with Hubert to find the King.

Margaret and Tarnitz arrive. He wants to run off with her, but she is in love with Karl Franz. He tells her that Karl Franz had a romance with an innkeeper’s niece in Heidelberg, but she refuses to believe it. She has flirted with Tarnitz only to get Karl Franz to pay attention to her. She urges Tarnitz to dance a farewell waltz with her (“Just We Two”) before they leave.

Prime Minister Von Mark encounters Karl Franz and tells him that the wedding to Princess Margaret is set for the first of June. A fanfare calls the guests to assemble, Von Mark announces the Princess, and Karl Franz asks her to dance. After Von Mark announces the wedding date, Karl Franz begins to leave, but the Princess stops him and says that she understands why his thoughts are elsewhere. He asks Von Mark to attend her, and everyone leaves.

Alone, Karl Franz takes from his pocket a dried rose and sadly recalls his happy days in Heidelberg (“What Memories, Sweet Rose”). He imagines that Dr. Engel, the students, and Kathie are with him. He vows to go back to Heidelberg.

Scene 2 - Courtyard, Inn of the Three Golden Apples, Heidelberg

Princess Margaret has arrived at the inn and meets Kathie, who believes that Karl Franz has forgotten her. The Princess assures her that he hasn’t, and that he is coming there that very day. But she urges Kathie to go away and marry someone else, so that Karl Franz will be able to forget her and turn to the Princess, who loves him. Kathie agrees. They both go into the inn, Kathie in tears.

Lutz arrives and tells Ruder that King Karl Franz is coming to visit the inn. But Gretchen is now the owner, and she is betrothed to Hubert, who resigns from the infuriated Lutz’s service.

The students march in (“To the Inn We’re Marching” reprise) and toast King Karl Franz. He asks them to sing some of the old student songs. Kathie arrives and tells him that she is going to Vienna, and that he must devote himself to his people. Princess Margaret appears. He goes to her, but he and Kathie will remember each other forever (“Deep in My Heart, Dear” reprise).

Copyright 2023 Linda Cantoni