ZOROASTRE (Version de 1756)

General description



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Compositeur : RAMEAU, Jean-Philippe (1683-1764)
Auteur du texte : CAHUSAC, Louis de (1706-1759)
Création : 20 janvier 1756 - Académie royale de musique (Paris)

Genre : Tragédie lyrique (5 actes)
Catalogue : RCT 62B

Synopsis :

I. Amélite inherits the throne of Bactria on the death of the king. She is lusted after by Abramane, Arimane’s mighty high-priest who, out of hatred for his rival Zoroastre, ‘founder of the Magi’, has caused his exile. Abramane wishes to take his revenge on Amélite for ignoring him. With a view to acceding to the throne, he courts Erinice, a princess of royal blood he will proclaim queen if she marries him. Erinice, hopelessly in love with Zoroastre, immediately joins Abramane in his undertaking. Abramane shares his magic wand with her. Amélite grieves over Zoroastre’s absence. Her companions, Céphie and Zélise, comfort her. Erinice rushes in to hand Amélite over to the Furies.

II. At the palace of Oromasès, the king of the Genies, Zoroastre laments over his love for Amélite. Oromasès orders him to liberate the princess’s kingdom. He invokes the Spirits of the Elements, who dance around Zoroastre, then hands him the Book of Life. Meanwhile, in the fortress of the kings of Bactria, Amélite is tortured by Erinice’s demons. As she refuses to give up the throne, Erinice is about to strike her, but is prevented from doing so by Zoroastre’s arrival. Erinice confess she loves him and withdraws, pledging vengeance. The two lovers renew their vows. Zoroastre brings down the prison walls and presents their queen to the people.

III. Beneath the city walls, where Zoroastre and Amélite are about to be wed, Abramane and Erinice quarrel. Having doubts about the princess, Abramane deprives her of her powers and envelops her in a thick cloud while preparing his trap. Zoroastre and Amélite arrive for their imminent wedding. Thunder resounds as Abramane suddenly appears in the sky and covers the scene with darkness. Zoroastre entrusts Amélite to the Spirits of the Elements and rushes towards the city, which Abramane has just set ablaze.

IV. Abramane prays to the gods of hatred and vengeance. Zopire brings the news of Zoroastre’s triumphs. Erinice reproaches Abramane for having associated her with a crime that failed, but the priest remains unshakeable: his revenge is near. Abramane erects an impassable bronze door in front of the temple and invokes Arimane and the forces of darkness; Erinice soon joins them. Demons appear from everywhere, led by Vengeance, who gives Erinice snakes and a dagger. The infernal spirits strike down Zoroastre’s statue. Arimane’s voice is heard from underground ordering them to imprison all the peoples on earth.

V. Erinice is intent on saving Zoroastre and informs him of Abramane’s plans. But Zoroastre scorns all danger. Hearing the music that heralds Zoroastre’s wedding with Amélite, Erinice flees in humiliation. Céphie arrives to inform Zoroastre of Amélite’s mysterious disappearance in the midst of the ceremony. The priests of darkness are about to crown Erinice as Abramane appears on a blazing cloud. On a gesture from Zoroastre he is struck by a thunderbolt and his allies are brought down. The Spirits of the Elements free Amélite; Oromasès unveils the temple of light where Zoroastre, married to Amélite, will henceforth reign.

[Benoit Dratwicki]

Parody(ies) :

Toussaint-Gaspard Taconet, Nostradamus
Création : Marionnettes de Nicolet, Foire-Saint-Germain, 1756
Localisation : édition, Paris : Cuissart, 1757
Voir sur Theaville

Charles-Nicolas Mondolot, Zoroastre
Source : J. Hébrail et J. de la Porte, Supplément à la France littéraire, Paris : Duchesne, 1778, t. III, p. 153 

[Pauline Beaucé et Françoise Rubellin]

1756/1/20 - Académie royale de musique - ZOROASTRE (Version de 1756)

FEL, Marie (1713-1794) [Amélite]
CHEVALIER, Marie-Jeanne (1722-1789 ap.) [Érinice]
POIRIER, François (-1759) [Zoroastre]
DECHASSÉ, Claude-Louis-Dominique (1699-1786) [Abramane]
GÉLIN, Nicolas (1726-1810) [Oromasés]
DAVAUX, Mlle (1753-1760 ca fl.) [Céphie]
PERSON (1735-1738 ca fl.) [Zopire]
CUVILLIER, Louis-Antoine (-1752) [Narbanor]
LARRIVÉE, Henry [Vengeance]
DESBELLES [Voix souterraine]
DALIERE, Mlle (1747-1770 ca fl.) [Furie]
RIVIÈRE [chanteuse] (1756-1780 ca fl.) [Furie]
DUBOIS L'aînée (1752-1770 fl.) [Furie]
DUVAL [1ère], Mlle (1740 ca-1760 ca fl.) [Furie]
LE ROY [chanteur] (1756-1760 ca fl.) [Furie]
LAURENT l'aîné (1752-1780 ca fl.) [Furie]

1770/1/26 - Académie royale de musique - ZOROASTRE (Version de 1756)

LEMIÈRE, Marie-Jeanne, voir LARRIVÉE1733-1786 [Amélite]
DUBOIS cadette, Mlle (1754-1780 ca fl.) [Érinice]
LEGROS, Joseph (1739-1793) [Zoroastre]
GÉLIN, Nicolas (1726-1810) [Abramane]
DURAND [chanteur], Mr (1759-1780 ca fl.) [Oromasés]
LEVASSEUR, Rosalie [Céphie]
PERÉ [chanteur] [Zopire]
LARRIVÉE, Henry [Vengeance]
DUPLANT, Rosalie (1745) [Furie]
DURANCY, Madeleine-Céleste (1746-1780) [Furie]
MUGUET, Mr (1757-1780 ca fl.) [Furie]
CASSAIGNADE (1763-1780 ca fl.) [Furie]
LASUSE [Furie]

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