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Amadis, tragedie en musique

Description: Libretto of the 1684 opera "Amadis," by Philippe Quinolt. The premiere of Amadis was delayed for a year after Lully completed its composition in order to allow the proper mourning period for Marie Thérese, wife of Louis XIV, who died in July of 1683. While still abstaining from theater at court, Louis XIV at last allowed the first public presentation of "Amadis" at the Opéra in Paris on 18 January 1684. It was an immediate public success. On the title page for this opera, there is a lithograph illustration of the god Apollo holding a lyre and the goddess Euterpe playing a stringed instrument that resembles a guitar. It also depicts the fleur de lis, and on the background, an allegorical image Louis XIV, the Sun King.
Date: 1684
Creator: Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688.

La fede ne' tradimenti

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.
Date: 1689
Creator: Gigli, Girolamo, 1660-1722.

La Geneviefa

Description: This is a ca. 1685 copy of the three-act libretto of "La Geneviefa" by Girolamo Gigli. The work was dedicated to Prince Francesco Maria of Toscana. The Sienese composer Giuseppe Fabbrini set the libretto to music for an opera staged at the theater of the Collegio Tolomei in Siena. Although the music of the opera is lost, the remark, "Il Sign. Giuseppe Fabrini, che ha data l'anima al verso con l'armonia della musica ..." in the preface of the libretto confirms Fabbrini's setting it to music. Concerning Fabbrini's operas, the Grove Music states that, "His operas to librettos by Gigli were all written for the college theatre which opened in 1685." The opera "La Genefieva" premiered that same year in February.
Date: 1685
Creator: Gigli, Girolamo, 1660-1722

Phaeton

Description: Libretto of the opera "Phaeton," by Philippe Quinolt. The plot is based on an episode in Ovid's Metamorphoses. In the plot, Phaethon, son of Climène and Soleil [the Sun], is filled with excessive ambition and pride. He abandons his beloved, Théone, and requests to the King of Egypt the hand of his daughter Libie. Climène, who after consulting the sea god Proteus knows of the demise that her son's avarice will bring upon himself, tries in vain to discourage his ambition for the throne of Egypt and urges him to renew his love for Theona. However, Phaeton goaded by the taunts of his rival, Epaphus, rides recklessly across the sky in his father's chariot. The spectacular ending includes Jupiter's thunderbolts aimed at stopping Phaethon's wild ride, and Phaethon crashing onto earth where he dies. An ensemble and chorus provide a sorrowful denouement. On the title page for this opera, there is a lithograph illustration of the god Apollo holding a lyre and the goddess Euterpe playing a stringed instrument that resembles a guitar. It also depicts the fleur de lis, and on the background, an allegorical image Louis XIV, the Sun King. It also includes an engraved frontispiece titled, "Le trébuchement de Phaeton" (The Fall of Phaeton) by Jean le Pautre.
Date: 1683
Creator: Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688.

Proserpine

Description: Libretto of the opera "Proserpine," by Philippe Quinolt; the plot is based on the story of the abduction of Proserpine and her descent into Hades, and also on Ovid's Metamorphoses, its original source. In the plot, Cerés, the goddess of the earth, summons the nymph Aréthuse to guard her daughter Proserpine. Aréthuse protests, and tells Cerés of her love for Alphée, the river god, but the anxious mother warns her she should not let her own feelings interfere with the assigned task. Alphée assumes that Aréthuse abandoned him to look after Proserpine. Taking advantage of the situation, Ascalaphe, Pluto's envoy, encourages Alphée's belief in Aréthuse's supposed infidelity; then, persuades both Alphée and Aréthuse into letting Pluto watch over Proserpine. Alphée and Aréthuse agree and as the lovers' attention wanders, Pluto seizes Proserpine and abducts her. Cerés learns of her daughter's abduction and in despair decides to withhold her gifts that give earth prosperity. When Alphée and Aréthuse finally reach Proserpine, they find that she has already eaten of the grain and tasted the fruit of the underworld, which condemned her to Pluto's control. Proserpine begs Pluto for mercy, but the love-stricken god refuses to free her. Pluto summons his judges and three furies, who support his claim to keep Proserpine with him, even at the cost of bringing devastation to earth. As Cerés laments, Alphée and Aréthuse approach to tell her that Proserpine is held by Pluto and that she is now the queen of the underworld. Cerés calls Jupiter and demands the return of daughter. Mercure descends and tells Cerés that the gods heard her plea and reached a compromise to allow Proserpine to be Pluto's wife and queen, while spending several months of each year with her mother. The title page contains a lithograph illustration of a winged ...
Date: 1680
Creator: Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688.

Roland

Description: Libretto of the opera "Roland" by Philippe Quinault; he based the plot of Roland on medieval legends of chivalry, setting episodes from Ludovico Ariosto's epic poem "Orlando furioso." Roland centers on the conflict between duty and love and the intervention of goddesses. This copy includes includes handwritten annotations of performers' names, and a frontispiece engraving undersigned by Jean Dolivar (i.e., Juan Dolivar) that illustrates one of the scenes from the opera. Jean-Baptiste Lully composed the music of the opera which premiered on January 8, 1685.
Date: 1685
Creator: Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688.

Thetis et Pelée

Description: Libretto of the opera "Thetis et Pelée" by Bernard le Bovier de Fontenelle. In the plot, the Nereid Thetis is wooed by Jupiter and Neptune, as well as by a mortal, Pelée (Peleus). When a storm caused by Neptune disrupts a celebration Jupiter gave in honor of Thetis, an oracle is consulted, which foretells that Thetis's husband will one day be less powerful than his son. Neptune and Jupiter withdraw their claims, and Thetis marries Pelée. Pascal Collasse composed the music of the opera which premiered at the Paris Opéra on January 11, 1689. This copy includes an engraved frontispiece titled, "Thetis et Pelée" by Juan Dolivar (undersigned as J. Dolivart).
Date: 1689
Creator: Fontenelle, M. de (Bernard Le Bovier), 1657-1757.

Le triomphe de l'amour

Description: Libretto of the ballet "Le triomphe de l'amour" written by Philippe Quinault in collaboration with Isaac de Benserade. It is divided in two parts. The first, contais the prologue and the ballet entrances (i.e., entrées); the second part contains flattering comments and instructions directed to the noble people participating in the ballet. Each of the entrées that comprise "Le Triomphe de l'Amour" reveal aspects of love triumphant. The theater represents a magnificently ornate place where a crowd receives Amour (i.e., the god Love), the son of Venus. The latter presides over the crowd and sings of the virtues of the king who has restored peace to his kingdom. Venus entreats everyone to pay homage to her victorious son. The first performance took place at Saint-Germain-en-Laye on January 21, 1681. The twenty entrées of this 'ballet de cour' (i.e., court ballet) were choreographed by Pierre Beauchamp with music by Jean-Baptiste Lully. Carlo Vigarani designed the stage décor and Jean Berain provided designs for costumes and decorations of this royal festivity. This copy includes a frontispiece engraving that depicts a stage setting by Daniel Marot.
Date: 1681
Creator: Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688.

Zephire et Flore

Description: This is a digital reproduction of the 1688 libretto of the opera "Zephire et Flore" by Michel Du Boullay. The music of the opera is attributed to Louis and Jean-Louis Lully, sons of Jean-Baptiste Lully. It was performed for the first time on March 22, 1688 at the Palais Royale in Paris.
Date: 1688
Creator: Duboullay, Michel