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Cendrillon FR - 1899
Jules Massenet 1842 - 1912 FR 2*
Opéra féerie
Libretto by Henri Caïn
Synopsis - Roles
Upcoming Performances
Background Facts - Top
  • This opera by Massenet was an immediate success at the time of the premiere in 1899 and enjoyed 50 performances the first year.
Synopsis - Top
Act 1
Chez Madame de la Haltière
In the hope of attracting the Prince’s attention, Madame de la Haltière and her daughters dress and leave for the ball. Pandolfe bitterly regrets his remarriage but nevertheless accompanies his wife, heartbroken though he is to leave Cinderella to her miserable lot. The girl unenthusiastically returns to her chores but soon falls asleep. While Cinderella is sleeping, the Fairy Godmother uses the opportunity to dress the girl in a magnificent gown, putting a glass slipper on her foot so that she will not be recognized. Cinderella promises to return at midnight and leaves for the ball.

Act 2
Chez le Roi
The guests try unsuccessfully to entertain the melancholy Prince. Ballet. Cinderella’s entrance attracts great attention. The young Prince and the girl fall in love at first sight, but soon midnight strikes and Cinderella must leave.

Act 3
Scene 1: Le Retour du Bal
In her haste, Cinderella loses her slipper. Returning home, Madame de la Haltière expresses her delight at the Prince’s seeming coolness which caused the unknown girl to flee from the ball. Cinderella is overcome with emotion. Regaining her senses, she evokes her dead mother and, weary of life, rushes beneath the Fairies’ oak to die.

Scene 2: Au Chéne des Fées
Unable to see each other, the lovers recognize one another by their voices. They implore the Fairy Godmother to remove the bush which she had placed between them. The Prince and Cinderella fall asleep in each other’s arms.

Act 4
Scene 1: La Terrasse de Cendrillon
Pandolfe emotionally witnesses his daughter’s convalescence. It is announced that the Prince is seeking the owner of the mysterious slipper. Cinderella regains hope.

Scene 2: Chez le Roi — La Cour d’Honneur
March of the Princesses. The Prince recognizes Cinderella and his love of life is renewed. Madame de la Haltière falls into Cinderella’s arms. “A happy ending is here for all,” concludes Pandolfe.
Roles - Top
Madame de la HaltièreMezzosopranoF-M Stepmother of Cendrillon
Le Prince CharmantSopranoF-H Prince Charming
La FéeSopranoF-H The Fairy
NoémieSopranoF-H Stepsister of Cendrillon
DorothéeMezzosopranoF-M Stepsister of Cendrillon
PandolfeBassM-VL Father of Cendrillon
Le RoiBaritoneM-L The King
Le Doyen de la FacultéTenorM-M
Le Surintendant des plaisirsBaritoneM-L
Prime ministerBaritoneM-L
1st spiritMezzosopranoF-M
2nd spiritSopranoF-H
3rd spiritSopranoF-H
4th spiritMezzosopranoF-M
5th spiritSopranoF-H
6th spiritSopranoF-H