Ariane H 370 (Full Score, hardback)

Martinu, Bohuslav

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Martinu Ariane H 370 (Full Score, hardback)

Martinů composed the one-act opera Ariadne in just one month in June 1958.  He chose his friend Georges Neveux's play Thése's Wanderings (1943) as the text for his own libretto.  He took most of the text from its acts 2 and 3, except for Ariadne's lament at the beginning of act 4, which he set to music as a large coloratura aria at the end of the opera.

Soon after its completion, in the summer of 1958, Martinů sent the opera, with a view to its world premiere at La Scala in Milan, to a composers' competition launched by the publisher Ricordi as part of its 150th anniversary celebrations.  After the competition was cancelled, Martinů negotiated with the publisher Bärenreiter to publish the opera in the spring of 1959.  The score and the composer's piano excerpt were published posthumously in 1960.  The premiere took place in 1961 at the city theatre in Gelsenkirchen.

The main source for the scholarly-critical edition is the autograph score and for the singing voices the autograph piano extract is used as a reference source.  The edition presents in an Appendix the original beginning of the work with a completely different instrumentation, which is also reproduced in facsimile.

- The Bohuslav Martinu Complete Edition I/1/12

- the first opera volume of the Complete Edition of the Works of Bohuslav Martinů

- foreword and critical report (Eng/Cz) by the editor

- the original beginning of the opera in the Appendix

- libretto by Bohuslav Martinů after the play The Wanderings of Theseus by Georges Neveux

Simon, Robert
Baerenreiter UK

Additional Information

20th Century
Mixed Voices
Czech, French