London: Cramer & Co. (Limited) [PN 8914], . Folio. Original publisher's quarter dark green cloth with illustrated boards, titling gilt to spine. 1f. (publisher's catalogue of operas arranged for piano), 1f. (title), 1f. ("Argument"), [i] (table of contents), [i] (cast list), 281, [i] (blank), 1f. (catalogue of Debain's Harmoniums) pp. Lithographed. Text in English. With additional publisher's catalogs ("Old English Ditties" and instruction books) to pastedowns.
Binding worn and shaken, with some bumping and chipping; endpapers browned. Occasional light soiling; several leaves partially detached; some minor creasing.
First English Edition. Revised version for London. Very scarce. OCLC no. 16852569.
La Reine de Saba, to a libretto by Jules Barbier and Michel Carré after Gérard de Nerval's collections of stories, Le voyage en Orient, was first performed at the Opéra in Paris on February 28, 1862. The English version, by Henry Farnie, was renamed Irene and interwove "certain legends and traditions of freemasonry." Wikipedia online.
"The work was severely condemned by almost the entire Parisian press. In spite of Gounod’s efforts to clarify motivations of the characters through thematic recollections, critics were mystified by the racial origin of and ideological imperatives for the Balkis-Adoniram union; the opera was withdrawn after only 15 performances. With some revisions, it fared better at the Théâtre de la Monnaie and became part of the repertory there in the 1860s and 70s. Performances in England in 1865, at the Crystal Palace (where the title role became Irene and the setting was shifted to Turkey), as well as a Parisian revival in 1900 were unsuccessful." Steven Huebner in Grove Music Online. Item #26347
Price: $275.00 other currencies