Le Pardon de Ploërmel (Dinorah)
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About the opera Le Pardon de Ploërmel
Dinorah, originally Le pardon de Ploërmel ("The Pilgrimage of Ploërmel"), is an 1859 French opéra comique in three acts with music by Giacomo Meyerbeer and a libretto by Jules Barbier and Michel Carré. The story takes place near the rural town of Ploërmel and is based on two Breton tales by Émile Souvestre, "La Chasse aux trésors" and "Le Kacouss de l'Armor", both published separately in 1850 in the Révue des deux mondes.Read more on Wikipedia
The opera was first performed at the Opéra-Comique (Salle Favart), in Paris, on April 4, 1859 under the title Le pardon de Ploërmel. The stage designs for Acts 1 and 3 were by Edouard-Désiré-Joseph Despléchin and Jean-Louis Chéret. Those for the more technically demanding Act 2, which included onstage running water, were by Joseph and Karl Wilhelm Mühldorfer. The principal singers were highly acclaimed: "Marie Cabel for her vertiginous-virtuoso interpretation of Dinorah; Sainte-Foy for his overwhelmingly convincing characterization of Corentin, lyrically as well as dramatically; Jean-Baptiste Faure for his fascinating stage presence as Hoël, Meyerbeer's first big baritone role." The supporting singers were also greatly admired, in particular, Barreille as the huntsman and Warot as the harvester. Meyerbeer's music was praised for its originality, but the libretto was found incomprehensible and even met with derision. In the initial run of performances up to the end of 1859, changes were made, the most significant being the casting of the contralto Palmyre Wertheimber in the role of Hoël.