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Alexander Joel

Alexander Joel To Make American Conducting Debut At Boston Lyric Opera

You’d be pretty surprised if Boston Lyric Opera announced that its new production of “The Merry Widow” was being conducted by Billy Joel. That’s not happening, but Billy’s half-brother, Alexander Joel, will be on the podium when Franz Lehár’s operetta opens on Friday at the Citi Shubert Theatre, with Roger Honeywell as Count Danilo and Erin Wall as Hanna Glawari, the wealthy title widow.

The brothers were born worlds apart: Billy in the Bronx in 1949, Alexander in London in 1971. Alexander remembers first meeting Billy when he was 5. “We were in Vienna. It was my first day of school, 1976, and that’s what inspired him to write the song ‘Vienna.’ ”

Read more at The Boston Globe.

BOSTON LYRIC OPERA: “The Merry Widow” at Citi Shubert Theatre, April 29-May 8. Tickets: $25-$175. 866-348-9738,

Photo by Suzanne Kreiter, Globe Staff