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Music with Ease > 19th Century French Opera > Cendrillon - Massenet


Cendrillon
(English title: Cinderella)
An Opera by Jules Massenet


Opera, in four acts, by Massenet, text by Henri Cain. Produced, Opéra Comique, Paris, May 24, 1899.

CHARACTERS

CINDERELLA……………………………………… Soprano
MME. DE LA HALTIERE, her stepmother………… Mezzo-soprano
NOEMIE, her step-sister……………………………. Soprano
DOROTHEE, her step-sister………………………… Soprano
PANDOLFE, her father……………………………… Baritone
THE PRINCE CHARMING………………………… Soprano
THE FAIRY………………………………………… Soprano
THE KING…………………………………………. Baritone
DEAN OF THE FACULTY……………………….. Baritone
MASTER OF CEREMONIES…………………….. Tenor
PRIME MINISTER………………………………… Bass





Time: Period of Louis XIII.
Place: France.

The story follows almost entirely the familiar lines of the fairy tale. It may differ from some versions in including Cinderella’s father, Pandolfe, among the characters. In the third act, sympathizing with her in her unhappiness with her stepmother and stepsisters, he plans to take her back to the country. But she goes away alone, falls asleep under the fairy oak, and in a dream sees the Prince, with whom she has danced at the ball. The fairy reveals them to each other and they pledge their love. In the fourth act the dream turns into reality.

As for the music, it is bright, graceful, and pretty, especially in the dances, the fairy scenes, and the love scene between Cinderella and Prince Charming.






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