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 Language: French
 Collection: Virtual Music Rare Book Room
Tancrède:  tragédie

Tancrède: tragédie

Date: 1702
Creator: Campra, André, 1660-1744; Danchet, Antoine, 1671-1748. & Tasso, Torquato, 1544-1595
Description: André Campra’s Tancrède, which premiered on 7 November 1702, is his best-known tragédie en musique, with a run of performances until 1764, and high praise by noteworthy music personalities such as Rameau. While the music critic La Cerf de la Viéville wrote positive comments about Tancrède, he was bothered by the opera’s use of low voices, which defied the tradition of employing castrati parts. Additionally, the role of Clorinda was written for a well-known contralto named Mademoiselle Maupin; although the range is that of a mezzo-soprano, the powerful quality of Maupin’s voice seemed to be a prime consideration for Campra.
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Prodromus Musicalis

Prodromus Musicalis

Date: 1704
Creator: Brossard, Sebastian, 1655-1730
Description: "Prodromus Musicalis" (published in 1702) is bound, here, with "Motets à une et deux voix, mélez de symphonies, livre premier" (1704); thus, the latter gate is used for this item as a unit. Both sets of motets consist of Latin-texted music preceded by a title page in French. A Table of Contents either at the front or back of each collection describes the motets contained therein. Content is printed on both sides of each leaf. "Prodromus" also has a note from Brossard informing the reader that a Dictionary of Music, published at the same time as "Prodomus," contains French translations of Italian, Greek, and Latin terms, knowledge of which is vital to the understanding and performance of the present music. The contents of "Prodromus" are as follows: "Ave vivens hostia," "O Jesu quam dulce," "Congratulamini filiae Sion," "O vos aetherei," "Festivi martyres" "Angele sancte" "Sonitus armorum," "Quemadmodum desiderat," and "O plenus irarum dies." "Motets à une et deux voix" contains the following pieces: "Venite exultemus," "Gaudete Mortales," "Ad mensam caelitus paratam," "Ave Regina coelorum," "Animae Amantes ad Deum esurientes," "Ite gemmae, Ite flores," "Anxiatus est super me spiritus meus," "Festivi Martyres, festivae Virgines," "Nisi Dominus aedificaverit domum."
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Songs in the new opera call'd Arsinoe, queen of Cyprus

Songs in the new opera call'd Arsinoe, queen of Cyprus

Date: 1705
Creator: Clayton, Thomas, 1673-1725
Description: Thomas Clayton’s first opera, Arsinoe, Queen of Cyprus, premiered at Drury Lane in London on 16 January 1705. The opera initially enjoyed success, but two years later, Clayton’s second opera was not well-received. Part of Arsinoe’s popularity may have been due to Catherine Tofts' portrayal of the title character; Toft would later become a star of the English stage.
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Proserpine : tragedie mise en musique

Proserpine : tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1707
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: With Proserpine, composer Jean-Baptiste Lully returned to his collaboration with librettist Philippe Quinault, which had been interrupted when the poet was banned from Court for offending Madame de Montespan (the king's mistress) with unflattering references in Isis. By 1679, Quinault had been restored to favor. Proserpine was first performed at St. Germain-en-Laye in February of 1680. Though seventeenth-century audiences were familiar with the story of Proserpine being carried off into Hades from numerous ballets and stage plays, Quinault returned to the source in Ovid's Metamorphoses to embellish the plot. In addition to details drawn from Ovid, Quinault added some of his own, making Proserpine among the most convoluted of Lully's operas. While the prologue alludes to King Louis XIV in the guise of Jupiter, the play itself refers specifically to the king's recent victories over the Spanish and Dutch when Jupiter battles and defeats the giants. Robert Isherwood notes that Jupiter's trip to Phrygia may represent Louis' inspection of Flanders after its defeat in 1679.
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Atys : tragedie

Atys : tragedie

Date: 1708
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687
Description: Atys, which premiered on 10 January 1676, is the first of the tragédies lyriques of Jean-Baptiste Lully and Philippe Quinault to conclude with a tragic ending. Joyce Newman, in Jean-Baptiste de Lully and his Tragédie Lyriques, summarizes the message of the story in this way: In [Atys], Quinault shows how actions which are not in accord with the noble ideal will bring defeat and punishment. Not only is love in opposition to glory in this opera, but also it is shown that if love is placed more highly than honor, it will bring unhappiness even to one of the immortals.
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Cantates françoises a voix seule et basse-continue, avec et sans symphonies, Livre second

Cantates françoises a voix seule et basse-continue, avec et sans symphonies, Livre second

Date: 1708
Creator: Stuck, Jean-Baptiste, 1680-1755
Description: This item comprises two books of secular cantatas for soprano (indicated by the consistent use of the soprano clef in the vocal line), obbligato strings and winds, and (unrealized) basso continuo. The first book was printed in 1706; the second, in 1708. Since the two volumes were bound together, the later date is used for this item. The subtitle for the first volume indicates "a voix seule avec symphonies" while the subtitle for the second volume gives "a voix seule et basse-continue, avec et sans symphonies."
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Atys; tragedie mise en musique

Atys; tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Atys, which premiered on 10 January 1676, is the first of the tragédies lyriques of Jean-Baptiste Lully and Philippe Quinault to have a tragic ending. As the Prologue indicates, the tragedie itself is a divertissement to ease the king's mind of his impending duties. Joyce Newman, in Jean-Baptiste de Lully and his Tragédie Lyriques, summarizes the message of the story in this way: "In [Atys], Quinault shows how actions which are not in accord with the noble ideal will bring defeat and punishment. Not only is love in opposition to glory in this opera, but also it is shown that if love is place more highly than honor, it will bring unhappiness even to one of the immortals."
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Phaëton. Tragedie mise en musique

Phaëton. Tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Like many of the operas created by composer Jean-Baptiste Lully and Philippe Quinault, his favorite librettist, Phaëton is filled with solar symbolism--a reference to the "Sun King," Louis XIV. The story also provides a political lesson: the haughty youth unable to contend with his position of power served as a warning to anyone brash enough to challenge the rigid mores of Louis' court. In addition to this political interpretation, the story is also a character study of a reckless juvenile whose arrogance destroys him. Phaëton's misguided and inappropriate attempts to make his lineage public bring about his downfall. The plot, like that of several of Lully's operas, is based on an episode in Ovid's Metamorphoses.
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Roland. Tragédie mis en musique

Roland. Tragédie mis en musique

Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Roland is one of three operas by composer Jean-Baptiste Lully and librettist Philippe Quinault based on the medieval legends of chivalry (the other two are Amadis and Armide). This is the second edition. Roland sets episodes from Ludovico Ariosto's Orlando furioso. And, like its sibling Armide, Roland centers on the conflict between duty and love. Acts I-III portray this conflict within Angélique, Queen of Cathay, while the remaining acts concern Roland's unrequited love for Angélique, which is resolved only when the goddesses Glory and Fame show him that this too is a struggle between duty and love.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Cantates françoises à I. et II. voix: avec simphonie, et sans simphonie, V. 1-2

Cantates françoises à I. et II. voix: avec simphonie, et sans simphonie, V. 1-2

Date: 1710
Creator: Clérambault, Louis-Nicolas, 1676-1749
Description: This item contains volumes 1 and 2 of Clérambault's "Cantates Françoises." The second volume bears the subtitle "Mellées de Simphonies." Volume 1 contains the cantatas "L'amour piqué," "Le jaloux," "Orphée," "Poliphême," "Medée," and "L'amour et Baccus." Volume 2 contains "Alphée et Arethuse," "Leandre et Hero," "La musette," "Pirame et Tisbé," "Pigmalion," and "Le triomphe de la paix." The continuo line is figured.
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Thesée; tragedie mise en musique

Thesée; tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1711
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Thesée, which premiered at the court theater at St. Germain-en-laye on January 11, 1675, was Jean-Baptiste Lully's third tragédie lyrique created in collaboration with librettist Philippe Quinault. As in most of his libretti for Lully, Quinault combines a plot based on a classical source (an episode from Ovid's Metamorphoses) with references to contemporary events. The Prologue alludes to Louis XIV's personal leadership in the military engagements in the Alsace (along the French/German border). The juxtaposition of Venus' entreaties for pleasure with Mars' call to arms reflects a period of unease during which the French armies were in retreat from the armies of the Elector of Brandenburg. This resulted in the unique joining of songs of love with songs of war and victory.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Thetis et Pelée; tragédie en musique

Thetis et Pelée; tragédie en musique

Date: 1716
Creator: Collasse, Pascal, 1649-1709 & Fontenelle, M. de (Bernard Le Bovier), 1657-1757
Description: Pascal Collasse was one of the few opera composers able to secure successful performances in the years following Lully’s death. Collasse then went on to supply the music for the entire opera, Thétis et Pélée, which was premiered at the Paris Opéra on 11 January 1689. Thétis remained popular throughout Collasse’s lifetime, in spite of its rather weak plot. Owing to its success is primarily the music, including a significant storm scene in Act II. This departure from the Lullian tradition is perhaps Collasse’s most significant contribution to the tradition of French opera.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Isis; tragedie mise en musique

Isis; tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1719
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Isis, which premiered January 5, 1677, at St. Germain-en-Laye, was the fifth of Jean-Baptiste Lully's tragédies lyriques written with librettist Philippe Quinault. The plot is loosely adapted from one of the episodes in Ovid's Metamorphoses. In many of its essentials, the plot of Isis resembles that of Lully's previous opera, Atys. In Isis, the nymph Io, daughter of the river Inachus, is promised in marriage to Hierax, just as the nymph Sangaride, daughter of the river Sangar, was promised to Celoenus. Like Sangaride, Io is pursued by another love and yields to this love in spite of her feelings of guilt. Like Sangaride, Io has a goddess as a rival and is vulnerable to her jealousy. Lully's contemporaries interpreted this story as representing the volatile situation between two of the King's mistresses. The subsequent scandale of the premiere ended the collaboration between Lully and Quinault for a time, and led to the dismissal of a number of members of Lully's artistic circle.
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Atys : tragedie mise en musique

Atys : tragedie mise en musique

Date: 1720
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Atys, which premiered on 10 January 1676, is the first of the tragédies lyriques of Jean-Baptiste Lully and Philippe Quinault to have a tragic ending. As the Prologue indicates, the tragedie itself is a divertissement to ease the king's mind of his impending duties. Joyce Newman, in Jean-Baptiste de Lully and his Tragédie Lyriques, summarizes the message of the story in this way: "In [Atys], Quinault shows how actions which are not in accord with the noble ideal will bring defeat and punishment. Not only is love in opposition to glory in this opera, but also it is shown that if love is place more highly than honor, it will bring unhappiness even to one of the immortals."
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Persée : tragedie

Persée : tragedie

Date: 1722
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Philippe Quinault, 1635-1688
Description: King Louis XIV's involvement in campaigns against the Dutch/Swedish alliance in early 1682 prevented him from attending the premiere of Persée in April of that year. As was customary in the operas of composer Jean-Baptiste Lully and librettist Philippe Quinault, the prologue included references to current battlefield exploits and portrayed the king as a paragon of virtue. The prologues of previous Lully operas emphasized glory and prowess over virtue; the change in emphasis in Persée may have resulted from the increased influence of Madame de Maintenon (the king's new mistress) in the court and her pension for decorum.
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Les amours des dieux : ballet heroique

Les amours des dieux : ballet heroique

Date: 1727
Creator: Mouret, Jean Joseph, 1682-1738
Description: None
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Le voyage de Cythere

Le voyage de Cythere

Date: 1727
Creator: Villeneuve, Alexandre de, 1677-1756
Description: This secular cantata for soprano and basso continuo features obbligato flute and violin. The introductory letter addresses not a royal patron but a commercial one - the women that would sing this cantata.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Le triomphe des sens

Le triomphe des sens

Date: 1732
Creator: Mouret, Jean-Joseph, 1682-1738
Description: This opera (ballet héroique) is comprised of five acts with a prologue. It was premiered on 29 May 1732 at L'accademie Royale de Musique in Paris. This score opens with a letter of dedication from the composer "A Son Altesse Serenissime Monseigneur Le Prince de Dombes." Next, Mouret includes two tables of contents: one of the dances (Airs de Simphonie) and the other, of the arias (Airs à Chanter). The following pages lists other publications by Mouret including prices and where these items may be purchased. Vocal lines are set apart from instrumental ones by text underlay and, in the case of high voices, the use of the standard treble clef. (The violin parts use the French clef.
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Nouvelles Poesies Morales sur Les Plus Beaux Airs de la Musique Francoise et Italienne avec la Basse.: Fables Choisies Dans le gout de M. De La Fontaine, Sur des Vaudevilles & petits Airs aisés à chanter, avec leur Basse & une Basse en Musette.  Recueil I.  6 liv. broché.

Nouvelles Poesies Morales sur Les Plus Beaux Airs de la Musique Francoise et Italienne avec la Basse.: Fables Choisies Dans le gout de M. De La Fontaine, Sur des Vaudevilles & petits Airs aisés à chanter, avec leur Basse & une Basse en Musette. Recueil I. 6 liv. broché.

Date: 1737
Creator: La Fontaine, Jean de, 1621-1695
Description: This score is a collection of poetry and set to music including moral fables (marked on the table of contents with an asterisk). Each piece has words written with musical lines in treble, bass, or a combination of both. Includes a preface ('Avis.') and table of contents for the movements prior to page 1 for each of the seven collections ('recueil'). The pagination restarts for each collection and for the fables which fall at the end of each section.
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Les Elemens

Les Elemens

Date: 1742
Creator: Destouches, André Cardinal, 1672-1749
Description: This four-act ballet was premiered on 22 December 1721 at the Tullieries and, later, performed at L'Academie Royale de Musique on 29 May 1725 and 27 May 1734, and at the Theatre on 22 May 1742. Various dramatis personae present an allegorical depiction of the French court.
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Dardanus : nouvelle tragédie

Dardanus : nouvelle tragédie

Date: 1744
Creator: Rameau, Jean Philippe, 1683-1764 & La Bruère, Le Clerc de, 1714-1754
Description: Dardanus went through a number of revisions from the time of its premiere in 1739 until its final eighteenth-century run at the Opéra in 1771. The version in the Virtual Rare Book Room was first performed in 1744; the last three acts exhibit extensive plot changes from the first edition. The final version in 1760 received the most positive acclaim, especially compared to the criticisms that were made about the nonsensical plot of the first version. By this point, however, the polemic between the Lullistes and the Ramistes, which had surrounded the premiere, had subsided.
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Platée : comédie-ballet

Platée : comédie-ballet

Date: 1749
Creator: Rameau, Jean Philippe, 1683-1764 & Le Valois d'Orville, Adrien-Joseph
Description: Jacques Autreau’s play Platée, ou Junon jalouse was based on a story by a second-century Greek author named Pausanias who chronicled his travels (including rituals and traditions) in ten books that represent the different regions of Greece. At the time Le Valois d’Orville appropriated Autreau’s drama for a libretto, it was uncommon for French court operas to include comic features, and even Autreau’s spoken play lacked the comic tone of the opera. Yet, the humor extends beyond the plot; for instance, the sounds of frogs and birds are represented instrumentally. Platée was first performed at Versailles for the wedding of the dauphin and Princess Maria Theresa of Spain in 1745.
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Fileuse : parodie d'Omphale

Fileuse : parodie d'Omphale

Date: 1752
Creator: Vade, M. (Jean Joseph), 1719-1757 & Destouches, M. (André Cardinal), 1672-1749
Description: When Vadé’s first opera comique, La fileuse, appeared at the Foire St Germain on 8 March 1752, the tragic opera that it parodied—Destouches’s Omphale (1701)—had recently been criticized by Friedrich Melchior Grimm in his “Lettre sur Omphale.” Soon after this attack on “bad taste” in French music, the Querelle des Bouffons heated up, with debates about the merits of Italian comic opera versus French serious opera. Many mid-eighteenth-century French comic parodies were based on familiar serious operas, but following the Querelle des Bouffons, lyrical Italianate melodies were incorporated into the opera comique genre. Vadé’s La fileuse follows the older model of reworking existing tunes to new texts, including a vaudeville finale; later in his career, he composed some original airs.
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Titon Et L'Aurore

Titon Et L'Aurore

Date: 1753
Creator: Mondonville, Jean Joseph Cassanea de, 1711-1772
Description: This three-act opera (Monsigny's Op. 8) is dedicated to Monseigneur le Prince de Soubise and was premiered at L'Academie Royalle de Musique on 9 January 1753. This full score opens with a letter of dedication from the composer to his patron and closes with a document describing royal publishing privilege.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library