LA COLOMBE Barre de navigation

(Creation in the Theater of Bade [ Baden-Baden], on August 6, 1860)

Situation : Près de Florence.





première chanteuses légère



première dugazon



premier ténor léger


maître Jean

première basse d'opéra-comique


Act 1. A small thatched cottage.
Mazet, servant of Horace who lost his fortune, sings stanzae to his master's dove he is feeding (romance: " Apaisez blanche colombe "). Mister Jean, butler of countess Sylvie, arrives meaning to buy the bird for her. Mazet explains that the dove cannot be used as a messenger but that he will try to convince his master to sell it. In spite of the poverty in which he lives - and to mister Jean's surprise - Horace cannot abandon his favorite animal (romance and trio: " Qu'il garde son argent"). Mister Jean learns however that Horace is in love with Sylvie and hurries to tell her. He suggests that Sylvie tries to buy the dove herself; she hesitates, but, thinking jealously about the magnificent parrot of her rival in society, Amynte, she finally accepts mister Jean's idea. Once alone, Sylvie expresses her confidence in the power of love which will bring Horace to leave her the bird (air: " Je veus interroger ce jeune homme "). The fact of receiving Sylvie puts Horace at the height of enjoyment; she announces right away that she will remain for dinner (quartet: " O douce joie ").


Acte II. Same set.
Mister Jean has volunteered to prepare the meal and sings the art of cooking (air: " Le grand art de cuisine "). Mazet returns from the market with empty hands, because the suppliers refuse to give credit to Horace. After a long discussion with mister Jean, on the best way of serving different plates, which are obviously impossible to prepare in such circumstances, Horace and Mazet set the table and decide to kill the dove to offer a meal (duet: "Il faut d'abord dresser la table "). In the meantime, Sylvie is overcome with tender thoughts for Horace (romance: " Que de rêves charmants ". They sit down to have dinner and, as Sylvie is about to ask for the dove, Horace reveals to her that it was killed. Mazet appears with a roasted bird; however, to everybody's reassurance, it's not the dove, but Amynte's parrot that had escaped a little earlier. Sylvie is delighted to learn that Horace's dove is still alive, because it will always remind her of his love.

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To write:

Sapho - La Nonne sanglante - Le médecin malgré lui - Faust - Philémon et Baucis - La colombe
La reine de Saba - Mireille - Roméo et Juliette - Cinq-Mars - Polyeucte - Le tribut de Zamora