Paris: Choudens Fils [PN A.C. 8922], 1892.
Large octavo. Quarter grey cloth with marbled boards, manuscript titling to spine. 1f. (recto decorative title, verso blank), 1f. (recto dedication, verso blank), 1f. (recto cast list and list of acts, verso blank), [xi] (libretto), [i] (blank), 1f. (recto notes on first performances, named cast lists, and contents, verso blank), 147, [i] (blank) pp.
Named cast for the Conservatoire National performance includes Tarquini d'Or, Cossira, Grimaud, and Wyns and for the Théâtre National performance Fiérens, Vaguet, Renaud, and Héglon.
Binding worn, rubbed, stained, and shaken; hinges split. Occasional light foxing; some signatures split; title soiled and mostly detached; handstamps throughout; old plastic tape to inner margin of two leaves.
First performed in Paris at the Conservatoire National on May 18, 1892 and at the Théâtre National de l'Opéra on June 17, 1892.
"Charpentier carried his spirit of revolt to the Villa Medici and, like Debussy before him, escaped from Rome to Paris on several occasions. He managed however to write the nucleus of his life's work there: the orchestral suite Impressions d'Italie, the symphonie-drame La vie du poète (a latterday Lélio) and most of the libretto and the first act of his most famous work, Louise... Charpentier's growing success in the 1890s with La vie du poète and open-air extravaganzas like the Sérénade à Watteau and La couronnement de la muse, coupled with the expected scandal attached to the opera's promiscuous theme and the excitement of the Paris Exhibition, led to a box-office triumph in February 1900, though the composer had nearly starved during the previous year. The vociferous young left wing hailed him as the saviour of French music, though it was undoubtedly the sociological ideals of this first opera of women's liberation rather than its music which appealed." Robert Orledge in Grove Music Online.
Price: $90.00 other currencies