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Achilles. An opera.

Description: John Gay is credited with inventing the ballad opera, a genre that blends spoken plays and previously composed songs to new texts. Although The Beggar’s Opera (1728) was his most successful endeavor, he continued to compose English musical dramas. Achilles was finally performed in 1733, one year after Gay died. In this story, Achilles appears as a girl named Pyrrha, unknown to most of the inhabitants of the island of Scyros, in order to circumvent a prediction that he will die in battle. Deidamia (the king’s daughter) knows the secret, however, because she is carrying the disguised man’s child. After Achilles’s identity is revealed, he and Deidamia are able to wed. Then, in a fateful twist of irony, Achilles plans to join the Greeks in the Trojan War.
Date: 1733
Creator: Gay, John, 1685-1732
Partner: UNT Music Library

Devil to pay: or, The wives metamorphos'd

Description: English libretto to Charles Coffey's ballad opera The devil to pay or, The wives metamorphos'd. The Devil to Pay is an adaptation of Thomas Jevon’s play The Devil of a Wife (1686). Nearly fifty years later, the ballad opera appeared at Drury Lane with Charles Coffey and John Mottley each responsible for half of the three acts. However, a much shorter and more well-received one-act version, edited by Theophilus Cibber, is represented in the printed libretto. Today Coffey is generally the only name widely attached to The Devil to Pay. The opera’s popularity is attested by the frequent performances and a translation into German, which contributed to the development of the Singspiel.
Date: 1732
Creator: Coffey, Charles, d. 1745; Mottley, John, 1692-1750 & Jevon, Thomas, 1652-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Le triomphe des sens

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.
Date: 1732
Creator: Mouret, Jean-Joseph, 1682-1738
Partner: UNT Music Library

Harmonia Sacra

Description: This collection of six anthems for various combinations of voices employs a figured continuo accompaniment. Instrumental interludes labeled "symphonies" can also be found interspersed among the choral selections. Though the music cites no particular scriptural passages, the text seems inspired by - if not directly derived from - the Bible.
Date: 1730~
Creator: Purcell, Henry, 1659-1695
Partner: UNT Music Library

Les amours des dieux : ballet heroique

Description: Mouret’s Les amours des dieux is classified as a ballet-heroïque, a type of opéra-ballet that was popular during the first half of the eighteenth century. Although the term ballet-heroïque suggests the prevalence of dance, drawing on the divertissement tradition, singing and acting are also integral parts of this genre. What distinguishes the opéra-ballet from the tragedie en musique is the use of separate plots for each entrée (comparable to an act). The segments are not entirely independent, however, in that there is typically a central, overarching idea.
Date: 1727
Creator: Mouret, Jean Joseph, 1682-1738
Partner: UNT Music Library

Le voyage de Cythere

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.
Date: 1727
Creator: Villeneuve, Alexandre de, 1677-1756
Partner: UNT Music Library

Rutzvanscad, il giovine

Description: This is a copy of Cattuffio Panchianio's "Rutzvanscad, il Giovine," a parody of Greek tragedy. The library's copy is bound with the libretto of Giovanni Battista Casti's "Prima la musica e poi le parole." Clarification notes relating to terms and characters of the tragedy appear on the back of p.79 together with a list of printing errors.
Date: 1724
Creator: Valaresso, Zaccaria, 1686-1769.
Partner: UNT Music Library

Persée : tragedie

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.
Date: 1722
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Philippe Quinault, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Atys : tragedie mise en musique

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."
Date: 1720
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Isis; tragedie mise en musique

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.
Date: 1719
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Three Cantatas

Description: It is upon this set of three Italianate cantatas - "Martillo," "Thyrsis and Neptune" and "Amymone" that Hayden's reputation mainly rests. The second and third works include unspecified obbligato instruments. Content is printed only on the recto of each leaf. The bass line contains no figuration.
Date: 1717
Creator: Hayden, George, d. 1722?
Partner: UNT Music Library

Thetis et Pelée; tragédie en musique

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.
Date: 1716
Creator: Collasse, Pascal, 1649-1709 & Fontenelle, M. de (Bernard Le Bovier), 1657-1757
Partner: UNT Music Library

Thesée; tragedie mise en musique

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.
Date: 1711
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

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

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.
Date: 1710
Creator: Clérambault, Louis-Nicolas, 1676-1749
Partner: UNT Music Library

Atys; tragedie mise en musique

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."
Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Phaëton. Tragedie mise en musique

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.
Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Roland. Tragédie mis en musique

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.
Date: 1709
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Atys : tragedie

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.
Date: 1708
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687
Partner: UNT Music Library

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

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."
Date: 1708
Creator: Stuck, Jean-Baptiste, 1680-1755
Partner: UNT Music Library

Proserpine : tragedie mise en musique

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.
Date: 1707
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Partner: UNT Music Library

Rosamond

Description: This three-act opera is to a libretto by Joseph Addison. Content is printed only on the recto side of each leaf. The score features two title pages: the first, with an engraving and small print describing the contents; the second, with large font. The work opens with a three-part "symphony or overture" for an ensemble of unspecified instrumentation: two treble instruments and one bass instrument. The indication "with Violins" on some the songs suggests the nature of the high instruments. No figures are included on the bass line. All the songs are followed, on the same page, by a version of the vocal line for flute.
Date: 1707
Creator: Clayton, Thomas, 1673-1725
Partner: UNT Music Library

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

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.
Date: 1705
Creator: Clayton, Thomas, 1673-1725
Partner: UNT Music Library

Prodromus Musicalis

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."
Date: 1704
Creator: Brossard, Sebastian, 1655-1730
Partner: UNT Music Library

Tancrède: tragédie

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.
Date: 1702
Creator: Campra, André, 1660-1744; Danchet, Antoine, 1671-1748. & Tasso, Torquato, 1544-1595
Partner: UNT Music Library