The Ghosts of Versailles

The Ghosts Of Versailles

The Ghosts of Versailles

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The Ghosts of Versailles is an opera in two acts, with music by John Corigliano to an English libretto by William M. Hoffman. The Metropolitan Opera had commissioned the work from Corigliano in 1980 in celebration of its 100th anniversary, with the premiere scheduled for 1983. Corigliano and Hoffman took as the starting point for the opera the play La Mère coupable (The Guilty Mother) by Pierre Beaumarchais. They took seven years to complete the opera, past the initial deadline. The opera received its premiere on December 19, 1991 at the Metropolitan Opera, with the production directed by Colin Graham. The premiere run of seven performances was sold out. The original cast included Teresa Stratas, Håkan Hagegård, Renée Fleming, Gino Quilico, and Marilyn Horne. The Metropolitan Opera revived the opera in the 1994-1995 season.

Corigliano considers this work a "grand opera buffa" because it incorporates both elements of the Grand Opera style (large chorus numbers, special effects) and the silliness of the opera buffa style. Commentators have noted how the opera satirises and parodies accepted operatic conventions.

Performance history

Lyric Opera of Chicago staged the opera in the 1995-1996 season in the first performances outside of the Metropolitan Opera, in a...
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