Meyerbeer S Le Proph Te

Author: Robert Ignatius Letellier
Editor: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1527527182
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For a period of close to half a century, French grand opéra, as exemplified by the works of Giacomo Meyerbeer and his school, was the preferred form of music for the theatre in most of the civilized world. During the July Monarchy, French grand operas, with their plots drawn from historical events, tended to be received as metaphors for current political themes. Meyerbee’s Le Prophète illustrates the complex, contested nature of political meaning during this period. This opera was set in the context of the emerging liberal historiography pioneered by Jules Michelet, and reactions to it illustrate the manner in which audiences and critics constructed ‘meanings’ with reference to their personal and collective experience and memories, with grand opera occupying a central role at that time. Le Prophète was once one of the most famous of operas, performed over 500 times at the Paris Opéra, and given throughout the civilized world, in the days when opera was ever-present in society. The plot has been called absurd, based as it is on the history of the Anabaptists in Münster (1534-35). However, history is far stranger than fiction, and Eugene Scribe’s libretto provides a modification of the garish facts in the interests of a highly symbolic scenario based on a tragic Reformation episode, and exploring the implication of the role of religion, power and politics in the fate of humanity. The music is powerful, gripping, and torrential in its flow. Each act is beautifully structured, each set piece crafted to perfection, dominated by an overwhelming sound world of instrumental colours and disturbing harmony. The ballet plays a vital function as a countersign to the human deeds of darkness and despair that characterize the action. The Coronation Scene is fascinating, and overwhelming in its impact, one of opera’s greatest moments. This study examines the origins and creation of the opera, its dramaturgy and musical style, the history of its astonishing reception around the world until the 1930s. One of the special features of this book is the collection of iconography associated with the work and its interpretation by many of the greatest singers of the Golden Age of opera.

Le Proph Te

Author: Giacomo Meyerbeer
Editor: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1443800945
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Le Prophète is the second panel of Meyerbeer’s Reformation diptych, his darkest and most mysterious opera. It explores issues of power and religion, fanaticism and faith, betrayal and trust, the demonic forces of history and the witness of little people caught up in them—the ultimate and enduring sacrificial power of love. In some ways it is almost like a political pamphlet or religious tract, and its oppressive but fascinating world can cast a compulsive spell. The plot is based on the revolt of the Westphalian Anabaptists under the leadership of the Leyden tailor Johann Bockholdt in 1537-38. Meyerbeer, as usual, studied the historical period carefully, and the opera is especially remarkable for its vivid human portraiture, its psychological realism mixed with religious mysticism, prophecy, dreams, unconscious promptings, telepathy, aspiration, conversion, rich in mythical resonance. The composer created a sustained atmosphere of menace and gloom by his dark orchestral colouring. This is contrasted with the pastoral escapism and orchestral brilliance of the famous Skaters’ Ballet, a contersign to the actions of cruelty and betrayal that characterize the action. The draft of a letter by Scribe of 23 April 1836 gives the first clue to a the new opera and its theme: the original title of Les Anabaptistes. However, it was held back in favour of another new project, L’Africaine (1865), for which a contract was signed, but dissatisfaction with the libretto, as well as the vocal difficulties of Marie-Cornélie Falcon meant that in the summer of 1838 Meyerbeer decided to give Le Prophète immediate attention. Performances planned for the winter season of 1841-42 came to nothing because Meyerbeer could only prepare a provisional score by the stipulated contractual delivery date (27 March 1841). All further efforts by the director of the Opéra, Léon Pillet, to conclude a contract came to nothing because in June 1842 Meyerbeer was appointed Prussian Generalmusikdirektor and was consequently tied to his duties in Berlin most of the time. In December 1843 Meyerbeer further had the opportunity to convince himself that Guilbert Duprez was no longer suitable for the role of Jean. Only on 1 July 1847, with the departure of Pillet, and under the joint new directorship of Nestor Roqueplan and Edmond Duponchel, was contact with the Opéra resumed. Eventually Pauline Viardot-Garcia and Gustave-Hippolyte Roger were chosen for the principal roles. Meyerbeer began a revision of the libretto with Scribe in early 1848 (focusing especially on the psychological nuances in the tripartite relationship between Jean, Fidès and Berthe, while hardly touching the depiction of the Anabaptists and the masses). and in early 1848, Emile Deschamps, who was sworn to secrecy, began putting Meyerbeer’s special requirements into verse. Meyerbeer himself composed new pieces for the opera (while revolution raged on the streets of Paris), and then began a thorough overhaul of the score. In actual history, the "Prophet" was a complete wretch whose profligacy cast a stigma on his sect that deprived it of further political status, Yet his rise from a tailor's bench to the throne of "Zion" and his subsequent execution in the Münster market place are the stuff of drama. Scribe's character is, in his own right, an extremely interesting figure, spiritually speaking: he is a genuine man of faith, but also an imposter who is ruthless but not entirely despicable. The depth of his human dilemma is successfully realized. George Bernard Shaw described him as alive and romantic, and there can be no doubt that the composer succeeded in heightening the effect of the drama by his deepening of the hero's psychology. The heart of the action lies in the mysterious, indeed ambiguous nature of the Prophet, and his relationship with his peasant mother, Fidès. Meyerbeer forged a magnificent maternal role, a deeply interesting fictional character, a pious woman, tenderhearted and yet energetic, seeking to save a son she believes she has lost, drawn through torment and abjection, betrayal and scandal, to the exercise of supreme forgiveness and ecstatic self-sacrifice. The composer achieved his master portrait here, and Fides was the progenitor of a line of operatic mothers who are among the noblest conceptions of the lyric stage. Le Prophète is powerful in other ways. The psychology of mass indoctrination is explored. The three Anabaptists are interesting in that they do not seem to have individual personalities, they speak as one person, something psychologically very accurate; true religion enables individuals, even in a community, to develop to the fullest and best of their potentiality; sects seek to stamp out individuality and replace it with a controlling idea. This notion really comes over in the score. The opera was another worldwide success. The beauty of the Breughelesque recreation of sixteenth century Netherlandish scenery and costumes, as well as the glory of the Cathedral Scene, constituted nothing less than an apotheosis in the history of theatrical mise en scène. It was performed 573 times in Paris until 1912, and some individual numbers like the famous Coronation March, the Skaters’ Ballet and the two arias of Fides became extremely popular. The high seriousness of the subject, and the dark sublimity of the music, won for this opera a unique regard: “People of my father’s generation would rather have doubted the solar system than the supremacy of Le Prophète over all other operas” (Reynaldo Hahn). The manuscript once again shows how Meyerbeer the pragmatic dramatist had to make many musical _adaptations_ to fit in with the stringent temporal regulations of the Paris Opéra, and the exigencies of his soloists. Jean’s role in act 3 was considerably reduced to conserve the singers’ stamina, as was the full version of Berthe’s suicide in act 5, to save on performing time. Several scenes of real historical interest (like, the requisitioning of young girls for the polygamous Anabaptists in act 4), or dramaturgical importance (the longer form of the Bacchanale in act 5 which develops the Anabaptist treachery against their leader) had to be sacrificed. These scenes, and the dark-hued but brilliantly virtuosic overture, should be restored in future performances.

Le Proph Te

Author: Eugène Scribe
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ISBN:
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Le Fanatisme Ou Mahomet Le Proph Te Nouvelle Dition

Author: Voltaire
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ISBN:
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Le Proph Te Du Xixe Si Cle Ou Vie Des Saints Des Derniers Jours Mormons Pr C D D Un Aper U Sur D Autres Socialistes Unitaires Et Sur Le G Nie De La Po Sie Anglaise

Author: Hortense G. DU FAŸ
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Le Proph Te A Lyric Drama The Music By G Meyerbeer The Libretto Tr By M Maggioni As Represented At The Royal Italian Opera Covent Garden

Author: Augustin Eugène Scribe
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ISBN:
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Meyerbeer S Le Proph Te

Author: Alan Armstrong
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The Meyerbeer Libretti

Author: Richard Arsenty
Editor: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1443846899
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Giacomo Meyerbeer, one of the most important and influential opera composers of the nineteenth century, enjoyed a fame during his lifetime hardly rivalled by any of his contemporaries. This ten volume set provides in one collection all the operatic texts set by Meyerbeer in his career. The texts offer the most complete versions available. Each libretto is translated into modern English by Richard Arsenty; and each work is introduced by Robert Letellier. In this comprehensive edition of Meyerbeer's libretti, the original text and its translation are placed on facing pages for ease of use. The eleventh volume presents the fourth of Meyerbeer’s grands opéras, and his final work. By 1860 long-imposed labor had started to tell upon the composer’s health: he knew that he must concentrate on the “navigator project” which he had started twenty years earlier if he intended to finish it. Meyerbeer died on 2 May 1864, the day after the completion of the copying of the full score of this his last opera, Vasco da Gama. Minna Meyerbeer and César-Victor Perrin, the director of the Opéra, entrusted the editing of a performing edition to the famous Belgian musicologist François-Joseph Fétis, while the libretto was revised by Mélesville. The original title of L’Africaine was restored out of deference to public expectation. Much of the music and action was suppressed, in spite of the strain this inflicted on the internal logic of the story. While L'Africaine is not lacking in the grandeur of statement and stirring climaxes for which the composer was so famous, there is a new intimacy, a new intensity of melancholic lyricism. Like its famous predecessors, it is basically an historical work, derived from the period of sixteenth-century Renaissance. The account of Vasco da Gama's voyage of discovery around the Cape of Good Hope and conquest of Calicut (1497-98) is subjected to a fictional treatment that raises many interesting issues. The framework is historical, but most of the characters and course of action are not; in fact the end of the opera, in the suicide of the heroine, suddenly leaves the terra firma of reality, and transports us into the mystical realms of the spirit. It is this mixture of modes that is central to the dramaturgy of L'Africaine, a confusion of history and fairytale, ancient certainties and challenging discoveries, in the creation of a new mythology. There is also originality in formal developments, with the great tenor scene in act 4 providing a new malleability in handling the constraints of shape and genre: recitative, arioso and cabaletta have a fluent integration in trying to explore the text more pointedly. L’Africaine was produced on 28 April 1865, a great posthumous tribute to its famous creators. The Ship Scene, the exotic Indian act, and the Scene of the Manchineel Tree exerted a fascination on audiences, and elicited new praise. The work full of melodic beauty and rapturous lyricism, began a triumphal progress through the world, beginning with the big stages of London and Berlin.

The Cambridge Companion To Grand Opera

Author: David Charlton
Editor: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521646833
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A fascinating and accessible exploration of the world of grand opera, first published in 2003.

Prophetic Vocation

Author: Johannes Panagopoulos
Editor: Brill Archive
ISBN: 9789004049239
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"Produced within the framework of a consultation ... at the Ecumenical Institute, Bossey, Switzerland from 12-17 September 1975."