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 Decade: 1680-1689
 Collection: Virtual Music Rare Book Room
Roland; tragédie mise en musique

Roland; tragédie mise en musique

Date: 1685
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). 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
Thesée; tragedie, mise en musique

Thesée; tragedie, mise en musique

Date: 1688
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
Proserpine; tragedie

Proserpine; tragedie

Date: 1680
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.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Forza del sangue, e della pietà; drama per musica

Forza del sangue, e della pietà; drama per musica

Date: 1686
Creator: Fabrini, Giuseppe & Gigli, Girolamo, 1660-1722
Description: 1686 libretto for Giuseppe Fabrini's opera La forza del sangue, e della pietà. The music for all of Giuseppe Fabrini’s operas, including La forza del sangue e della pietà, is lost. However, the libretti by Gerolamo Gigli, have been preserved for these dramas that were performed at the Collegio Tolomei in Siena. La forza del sangue e della pietà translates as “The Force of Blood and Pity.”
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Phaëton : tragédie mise en musique

Phaëton : tragédie mise en musique

Date: 1683
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.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
La fede ne' tradimenti

La fede ne' tradimenti

Date: 1689
Creator: Gigli, Girolamo, 1660-1722.
Description: This is a 1689 copy of Girolamo Gigli's three-act libretto for the opera "La Fede ne' tradimenti," set to music by Giuseppe Fabbrini for the 1689 Carnival season at the Collegio Tolomei in Siena, Italy.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Le triomphe de l'amour

Le triomphe de l'amour

Date: 1681~
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687
Description: Le Triomphe de l'Amour, a ballet de cour created by composer Jean-Baptiste Lully and librettists Isaac de Benserade and Philippe Quinault, was danced for the first time at Saint-Germain-en-Laye on January 21, 1681. Several setbacks, including the illness of the dauphin and the reluctance of court ladies to attend the ballet, postponed its premiere for nearly three months. Benserade, one of the creators of the ballet de cour, was drawn out of retirement to create verses in celebration of the dauphin's marriage to Marie-Anne-Christine-Victoire of Bavaria. The first public performance at the Palais Royale in Paris took place May 6, 1681.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Ballet du Temple de la paix

Ballet du Temple de la paix

Date: 1685
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: The elements that make up the Jean-Baptiste Lully's Ballet du Temple de la Paix have some parallels to the plot of Roland, which premiered in the same year. Both celebrate the expanding influence of France and Louis XIV through the introduction of exotic characters. The flexibility of the ballet de cour format, which was more a progression of loosely related scenes and spectacles than an organized plot, allowed librettist Philippe Quinault more freedom in his elaboration of that theme.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Armide

Armide

Date: 1686~
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: Armide, which premiered at the Paris Opéra February 15, 1686, was the last tragédie lyrique on which Jean-Baptiste Lully collaborated with his favorite librettist, Philippe Quinault. Quinault retired from the stage after Armide, and Lully died a year later on March 22, 1687. From its first performance, Armide was considered their masterpiece. Armide is unusual among Lully and Quinault's tragédies lyriques in that it concentrates on the psychological development of a single character; the reflective style of this late work may be regarded as an early presentiment of trends toward individualism in art.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Zéphire et Flore; opéra en musique

Zéphire et Flore; opéra en musique

Date: 1688
Creator: Lully, Louis de, 1664-1734 & Duboullay, Michel
Description: Zephire et Flore, the only opera attributed to Louis and Jean-Louis Lully, sons of Jean-Baptiste Lully, sets a libretto by Michel Du Boullay based on episodes from Greek mythology. It was performed for the first time 22 March 1688 at the Palais Royale in Paris. There is no record of a court performance, and it was revived only once, in June of 1715, with revisions by Destouches. We know of no modern performances, nor recordings of the opera in whole or in part.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
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