MasterVoices performed Victor Herbert’s Babes in Toyland on April 27, 2017 at Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall. The glorious concert was conducted and directed by Artistic Director Ted Sperling and featured tour de force performances by Kelli O’Hara (Contrary Mary), Bill Irwin (Master Toymaker), Christopher Fitzgerald (Alan), Lauren Worsham (Jane) and Jay Armstrong Johnson (Tom Tom). The cast was accompanied by the 130 singers of MasterVoices and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s.
A huge hit when it premiered in New York in 1903, Victor Herbert’s Babes in Toyland hasn’t seen a major revival in New York City in over 85 years. Full of wonderful melodies, it tells a story that is both amusing and sinister: villainous Uncle Barnaby plots the deaths of his young niece and nephew, Alan and Jane, in order to gain their inheritance. After many twists and turns, the siblings, with the help of several Mother Goose characters, thwart his efforts and bring happiness back to Toyland. The Carnegie Hall concert presented the exciting original score in its full orchestration, including hits such as “Toyland”, “March of the Toys”, and “I Can’t Do the Sum.”