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AXEL AN DER HIMMELSTÜR, Volksoper Vienna , 24 October 2016 - 19:00




Event Details
Category: Operas Event: AXEL AN DER HIMMELSTÜR Date/Time: 24 October 2016 - 19:00 Venue: Volksoper Vienna Address: Währingerstrasse 78, A-1090 Wien / Vienna (Map)

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Description

Would-be reporter Axel leads a hand-to-mouth existence and is waiting for his grand opportunity. A story about the legendary movie star Gloria Mills would grant him his breakthrough, or so he thinks. It turns out he has to come up with more ideas before he finally reaches heaven’s gate. Ralph Benatzky’s operetta had its world premiere at Theater an der Wien in 1936 and turned the young Zarah Leander into an overnight star with hits such as „Movie star, You Idol of the Century“ and „Tied Hands.“


Act IThe penniless reporter Axel Swift is always on the lookout for a story that could finally give him his big break. Gloria Mills would be just such a story, he thinks. But the legendary film diva is not giving any interviews at the moment, not least because of her unhappy knack of picking the wrong men.

Axel sneaks into the office of Scott Film Production, where his girlfriend Jessie works as a secretary. He is hoping to get to Gloria through Jessie. But the rascally Axel has stood Jessie up once too often and she gives him the cold shoulder. She is certainly not going to facilitate an interview with the man-eating Gloria Mills.

Gloria storms into the office in one of her legendary rages, demanding that her contract be dissolved. She feels alone and misunderstood. Her producer Scott tells Gloria to her face that her moods are caused solely by her affair with the socialite Prince Tino Taciano. Gloria discovers Axel and unloads all her rage on him. Axel’s ambition is aroused: he is going to get his interview with Gloria.

Axel gets his best friend and roommate, the makeupartist Theodor, to disguise him as an old man and throws himself in front of Gloria’s car. To avoid a scandal, Gloria is forced to invite the – presumed – old man to supper at her villa.

At home, Theodor and Jessie are waiting for Axel. The clumsy and blundering Theo has also fallen in love with Jessie, but feelings between Axel’s girlfriend and his best friend are naturally a taboo subject. Jessie already suspects that Axel has once again forgotten their rendez­vous and so she is not quite so resistant to Theodor’s advances as she ought to be. The situation Axel bursts in on is therefore equivocal. But in any case he has only come home in order to spruce himself up. He soothes the furious Jessie with an outrageous pack of lies and secretly makes off to Gloria’s villa. A short time later, however, Gloria’s chauffeur rings the doorbell to collect Axel. Furious, Jessie realises what has been going on. Without hesitation she pretends that Theodor is Axel and has herself driven with Theodor to Gloria’s villa.

The gossip reporter Randy Racebottom and his colleagues are skulking around the villa, on the lookout for any new information about Gloria. And indeed Police Commissioner Morton has had a tip-off that a thief has his eye on the legendary Mills-Fairbanks diamond that Gloria keeps in her villa. Randy greets his unsuccessful colleague Axel with derision. But to everyone’s astonishment the door to Gloria’s abode is opened to him. Axel enters the Gates of Heaven …Act IIIn Gloria’s villa. Gloria is desperately unhappy. Is her prince perhaps only interested in her wealth and the precious diamond? Gloomily she welcomes the old man for the supper together which she has promised him.

Axel boldly reveals his true identity and uses all his charm to persuade Gloria to give him an interview. She is surprisingly open to the idea. But Gloria is not an actress for nothing. When Commissioner Morton bursts in on them, she calmly hands Axel over to the police, saying that he has tried to steal her diamond. However, Axel succeeds in giving Morton the slip and hides in the villa.

But it is not just Axel who is in Gloria’s villa without permission. There are indeed some dubious characters skulking around the house. And Jessie and Theodor have also arrived and are exploring the diva’s mysterious domicile for themselves.

Gloria learns from her producer Scott that her beloved Prince Tino Taciano is in fact a fraudster. In despair, she wants to end her life, but Axel is able to stop her just in time. Against her wishes, he resolves to spend the night with her and watch over her. Gloria and Axel become increasingly close – considerably aided in this by a power cut.

Alerted by the power cut, the police storm Gloria’s villa. But they are too late: the famous diamond has dis­appeared! Axel is seized as he tries to leave the house and is accused of the theft. Gloria could give him an alibi, but her reputation would be ruined. She watches in silence as Axel is led away.

The lawyer Bab Peppermint offers his services to Axel. During the questioning that follows in Gloria’s villa, all the other uninvited guests, apart from Jessie and Theo, are also exposed. Finally, Gloria has to admit that Axel did spend the night with her. But only for an interview, of course.

And indeed the morning edition does contain a detailed interview with Gloria Mills, seemingly by a certain Axel Swift. But Axel did not write it …


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