Les Noces d'Olivette

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Les Noces d'Olivette ("The wedding of Olivette") is a French opéra comique[1] in three acts composed by Edmond Audran (1842-1901)[2], with a libretto by Henri Chivot (1830-1897)[3] and Alfred Duru (1829-1889)[4].

The title is also found in shortened form as Olivette

The original text

A farcical romance about "Olivette", her love "Valentine", his lover "The Countess" and a "sea captain", Olivette's official fiancee.

The work was first performed in Paris on 13 November 1879 at the Théâtre des Bouffes Parisiens, directed by Louis Cantin.

Translations and adaptations

Adapted into English from the French as Olivette, a comic opera in three acts, by Henry Brougham Farnie (1836-1889)[5], the dialogue and business translated and adapted by "T. L.". (The English title is also found listed as Olivetti in some sources.)

The English version opened at the Strand Theatre in London, playing for 466 performances from 1880 to 1881. It opened at the Bijou Opera House in New York City on 25 December 1880 and went on to have long runs in New York and elsewhere.

Published in Boston by O. Ditson & Co.; c1881., Miller and Sayers, 1889

Performance history in South Africa

1882-3: Performed in English for the first time in South Africa as Olivette by Mabel Hayes and her company in the Theatre Royal, Cape Town, with vocal work supervised by Henry Harper. Done as part of a season that not only included the premieres of two more comic operas - Iolanthe (Gilbert and Sullivan) and Manteaux Noirs (Parke, Paulton & Bucalossi) - but also a range of plays.

1909: Produced by Leonard Rayne in English as Olivetti at the Standard Theatre, Johannesburg, featuring Naomi Rutherford in the cast.









D.C. Boonzaier. 1923. "My playgoing days – 30 years in the history of the Cape Town stage", in SA Review, 9 March and 24 August 1923. (Reprinted in Bosman 1980: pp. 374-439.)

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp. 375, 389-390, 410-411,

S.A. Pictorial (numerous issues)

Rand Daily Mail (numerous issues)

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