Show History



The musical adaptation of Triumph of Love began in 1993 when bookwriter James Magruder presented his non-musical translation of the seventeenth-century play by Pierre Marivaux at Baltimore's Center Stage, where he also served as dramaturg. The next year, composer Jeffrey Stock saw the production at New York's Classical Stage Company. He mentioned the idea to his mentor, producer Margo Lion, who encouraged him to musicalize it.

Eventually, director Michael Mayer and lyricist Susan Birkenhead joined the creative team. In 1995, the show held a workshop at Manhattan Theater Club. After further development, the musical was given a full-scale mounting back at Center Stage, where it had its roots. Triumph of Love is a musical comedy based on the 1732 commedia dell'arte play, Le Triomphe de l'Amour by renowned French playwright Pierre de Marivaux.  Bookwriter James Magruder's book, though, is much more anachronistic than the original work, making many references to people or events outside of the eighteenth-century realm in which the musical takes place.  Many also classify this musical as a "chamber musical," rather than a book musical, a reference to the classical music style utilized in Jeffrey Stock's score.


As previously mentioned, Triumph of Love premiered at the Center Stage Theatre in Baltimore.  After rave reviews and another production at Yale Repertory Theatre in Connecticut, a Broadway transfer was soon in the works.  After thirty previews, the Broadway production opened on October 23, 1997, at the Royale Theatre.  Despite great reviews, the show closed on January 4, 1998, after only 85 performances.


  • Celebrities who have starred in Triumph of Love include: Betty Buckley (Hesione), Susan Egan (Lonide), F. Murray Abraham (Hermocrates), Roger Bart (Harlequin), Christopher Sieber (Agis), Nancy Opel (Corine) and Kevin Chamberlin (Dimas).
  • The Broadway production of Triumph of Love was nominated for three Drama Desk Awards (including Outstanding Lyrics), one Tony Award and one Drama League Award for Distinguished Production of a Musical.
  • Broadway audiences at the original production of Triumph of Love were greeted by the sight of a huge gold cloth covering the set. During the music that opens the show, the cloth was flown out to reveal a stylistic topiary maze garden.