La Cigale

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La Cigale ("The cicada") is a French comedy in three acts by Henri Meilhac (1830–1897)[1] and Ludovic Halevy (1834–1908)[2].

The original text

First performed in French at the Théâtre des Variétés, Paris, 6 October, 1877. Apparently Halévy's friend Edgar Degas collaborated on the production.

The French text was first published in Paris by Calmann Lévy in 1877, and again in 1878, 1884.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into English and adapted as The Grasshopper by John Hollingshead and performed at the Gaiety Theatre, London, in 1877.

The original was re-published by the British Library, Historical Print Editions (February 15, 2011)[3]

Performance history in South Africa

1893: Performed as La Cigale in the Opera House Cape Town by the Lyric Opera Company, with Leonora Braham and Grant Fallowes in the leading roles. (D.C. Boonzaier, cited by Bosman, 1980 (p. 398), refers to the play as an "opera").


Facsimile version of the French text (3rd edition) Hathi Trust Digital Library[4]

Anna Gruetzner Robins (Ed.). 2000. Walter Sickert: The Complete Writings on Art. Oxford University Press: P. 11, footnote 1. [5]

Theodore Reff. 1970. "Degas and the Literature of His Time" - II. The Burlington Magazine, Vol. 112, No. 811 (October), pp. 674+677-688.

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: p. 398.

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