The most successful German-language musical of all time traces the life of the beloved empress and cult figure nicknamed Sissi, from humble beginnings to her assassination in 1898. The figure of Death, attended by his Angels, is portrayed as her one true love.
Set against the cataclysmic times that led to the fall of the longest-ruling family in history and the rise of the fascism and anti-Semitism that would peak in the next century, "Elisabeth" resists temptation to sugar-coat the story, and presents us with a strong-willed woman driven to defy attempts to rein in her personality to meet royal expectations. "I Belong to Me," she sings in the score's most memorable number. Think of Scarlett O'Hara, Evita and Jackie Kennedy meeting on the Danube.
(From a review by Larry Lash/ Variety)