Thésée (Mondonville)

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Jean-Joseph de Mondonville, by Maurice Quentin de La Tour, ca. 1746 Jean-Joseph Cassanea de Mondonville (original replica) by Maurice Quentin de La Tour.jpg
Jean-Joseph de Mondonville, by Maurice Quentin de La Tour, ca. 1746

Thésée ( Theseus ) is an opera by the French composer Jean-Joseph de Mondonville, first performed at the Palace of Fontainebleau on 7 November 1765. It takes the form of a tragédie en musique in five acts. The opera is a new setting of a libretto by Philippe Quinault, originally set by Jean-Baptiste Lully in 1675. [1] Mondonville's version was not a success and did not get to enjoy its public premiere at the Paris Opera until 13 January 1767, but audience rejected it calling for the restoration of Lully's original music. Mondonville's opera was withdrawn for good after its fourth performance. [2]


CastVoice typePremiere, 7 November 1765 [3]
( Conductor: – )
Eglé (Aegle), a princess raised under the tutelage of Egée, King of Athens soprano Sophie Arnould
Cleone, a confidante of EglésopranoMlle Avenaux
The high priestess of Minerva soprano Marie-Jeanne Larrivée Lemière
Egée (Aegeus), King of Athensbasse-taille (bass-baritone) Henri Larrivée
Arcas, a confidant of Egée haute-contre M Muguet
Médée (Medea), a magician princesssopranoMlle Dubois (or Du Bois)
Dorine, a confidante of MédéesopranoMlle Dubrieul
Thésée (Theseus), Egée's unknown sonhaute-contre Joseph Legros
A woman from AthenssopranoMarie-Jeanne Larrivée Lemière
A shepherd from the enchanted islandhaute-contreM Muguet
A shepherdess from the enchanted islandsopranoMarie-Jeanne Larrivée Lemière
MinervesopranoMlle Avenaux

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  1. Holden.
  2. Pitou.
  3. Cast according to original 1765 libretto.