La vie parisienne
(, Parisian life
) is an opéra bouffe
, or operetta
, composed by Jacques Offenbach
, with a libretto by Henri Meilhac
and Ludovic Halévy
This work was Offenbach's first full-length piece to portray contemporary Parisian life, unlike his earlier period pieces and mythological subjects. It became one of Offenbach's most popular operettas.
It was first produced in a five-act version at the Théâtre du Palais Royal
, Paris on 31 October 1866. The work was revived in four acts (without the original fourth act) on 25 September 1873, at the Théâtre des Variétés
It was first given in London
at the Holborn Theatre
on 30 March 1872 in an adaptation by F. C. Burnand
. The New York
premiere was at the first Booth Theatre
, on 12 June 1876.
The story begins at the railway station, where the employees boast of all the wonderful places in France. Soon, Baron and Baroness Gondremarck arrive from frozen Stockholm
for a Parisian holiday and ask tour guide Joseph Partout to show them the city's glittering night life. Finally, Pompa di Matadores, a Brazilian millionaire, arrives to spend a fortune in the capital.
Métella, a demi-mondaine with a heart of gold, reads a letter from Baron Gondremarck's friend, Baron Frascata asking her to give Gondremarck the same pleasure she once had given him.
At a party, the guests vow to make their pleasure long lasting as they eye one another,... Read More