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RAMEAU Le Temple de la Gloire

Jean-Philippe Rameau

Le Temple de la Gloire
(The Temple of Glory)

Opera in three acts with a prologue
Libretto by Voltaire


Nicholas McGegan, conductor

Marc Labonnette
Camille Ortiz-Lafont
Philippe-Nicolas Martin
Gabrielle Philiponet
Chantal Santon-Jeffery
Artavazd Sargsyan
Aaron Sheehan

New York Baroque Dance Company
Catherine Turocy, artistic director
Brynt Beitman, Caroline Copeland, Carly Fox Horton, Olsi Gjeci, Alexis Silver, Meggi Sweeney Smith, Matthew Ting, Andrew Trego

Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Nicholas McGegan, music director
Bruce Lamott, chorale director

Catherine Turocy, stage director and choreographer
Scott Blake, set designer
Marie Anne Chiment, costume designer
Pierre Dupouey, lighting designer
Sarah Edgar, assistant director
Cath Brittan, production director

Video production made possible with generous support from
Rebecca Moyle & Tyler Lange

Major support for Le Temple de la Gloire was generously provided by
David Low & Dominique Lahaussois
The Waverley Fund
Mark Perry & Melanie Peña
PBO’s Board of Directors
The Bernard Osher Foundation

Cal Performances and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale dedicate Le Temple de la Gloire to Ross E. Armstrong for his extraordinary leadership in both organizations, his friendship, and his great passion for music.

Performed and recorded in April 2017

Audio recording production, engineering, editing and mastering: David v.R. Bowles (Swineshead Productions, LLC)

Video recording production: Tal Skloot (Tritone Media)

ONLINE VIEW: Program Page & Synopsis

Jean-Philippe Rameau
Le Temple de la Gloire (The Temple of Glory)

Reconstruction of the original 1745 version
Julien Dubruque, editor
Edited for the Opera Omnia Rameau by the Société Jean-Philippe Rameau
Sylvie Bousseau, general editor

Used by arrangement with European American Music Distributors Company, US and Canadian agent for Baerenreiter–Verlag, publisher and copyright owner.

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• • •


The plot centers around admission qualifications to an allegorical Temple of Glory, to which King Louis XV, foremost among the audience, would have anticipated certain entry. However, Apollo and other representatives of peace, happiness, and virtue spurn a succession of applicants from classical antiquity who represent envy, tyranny, militancy, and debauchery. The contrast of these vices with their corresponding virtues invites a panoply of musical styles and characterizations: demons and Muses, shepherds and warriors, priestesses and satyrs. In the end, only the Roman Emperor Trajan is admitted by the goddess Glory to her temple, after he shows magnanimity in freeing his conquered captives. For the French monarch fresh from victory on the battlefield, the opera was a cautionary tale rather than the apotheosis he expected.

—Bruce Lamott

First performed in the theater in the riding school in the Great Stable (Grande Écurie) at Versailles, November 27, 1745.

Sung in French.

ONLINE VIEW: Program Notes


An Extravaganza Fit for a King
by Bruce Lamott

Will Rogers once quipped, “If you don’t like the weather in Oklahoma, wait a minute and it’ll change.” The same could be said about Rameau’s operas. Unlike the string-of-pearls alternation of arias and freely sung recitatives found in contemporary Italian opera seria (serious opera) such as those of Handel, Rameau’s opéra-ballets are an unpredictable variety show of dances, choruses, ensembles, and shorter arias interspersed with lyrical recitatives and audacious harmonic surprises.

Rameau’s orchestral palette is full of variety as well, launching a French affinity for woodwind timbres that will continue from Berlioz to Debussy to Messiaen. His compositions attest to the serendipitous presence of Jacques-Martin Hotteterre and family, who for woodwind players are what Antonio Stradivari and his Cremona contemporaries are to strings. From the first notes of the Ouverture, two piccolos add striking brilliance to the animated harmonies of the oboes, trumpets, horns, and bassoons. This bombast abates briefly for the graceful minuet for flute duet and strings and two flutes that it frames.

Rameau’s orchestration works as musical set design, creating an atmospheric effect before a single note is sung. The Prologue begins in the cavern of Envy with a prominent duet of subterranean bassoons in dialogue with plummeting scales (tirate) in the violins. The bucolic scene for the éntree of the shepherds and shepherdesses in Act I is set by the sound of the musette, a kind of housebroken bagpipe frequently seen in paintings of the Adoration of the Shepherds or pastoral concerts (concerts champêtres). The omnipresence of woodwinds in the French orchestra sets it apart from its Italian contemporaries, in which woodwinds are an occasional additive element used for specific imagery such as birds or the hunt.

Another departure from Italian opera seria of the period is the French treatment of the dialogues and monologues (recitatif) connecting the concerted arias and dances. Unlike the free rapid-fire delivery in the rhythm and speed of the Italian language, French recitative is subject to a pulse and very attentive to the scansion of the poetic lines. Rameau was assiduous in his attention to Voltaire’s text both in the rhythm and meaning of the words. As the author of the century’s most important treatise on harmony, Rameau was particularly sensitive to the effect of chord progressions played by the harpsichord and cello (basso continuo) which underscore the structure and content of the text. Ever-present throughout Italian opera (hence the name continuo), the harpsichord is not included in Rameau’s orchestral accompaniments, and the absence of its ubiquitous sparkle focuses our attention on other instrumental colors. Rameau divides the viola section into two separate parts–a characteristic of French string scoring since Lully– In order to fill out the harmonies usually supplied by the keyboardist’s right hand,

Choruses and ensembles, rarely found in opera seria, abound in this opera. As with French grand opera of the 19th century, there is a large role for an independent choral ensemble which changes characters with the shifting scenarios of the three acts; their various roles–demons, Muses, shepherds and shepherdesses, bacchantes, priests and priestesses, and Romans–require changes in vocal timbre as well as personality. As a major figure of the Enlightenment’s classical humanism, Voltaire was well-versed in Greek drama, and at times the chorus takes on the role of the classical Greek chorus, reflecting the message rather than portraying a role.

Composers of Italian opera seria such as Handel, Vivaldi, or Alessandro Scarlatti strung arias together on a storyline set up by recitative. Aria texts were most often generic expressions of affect–vengeance, joy, ambition, sorrow–absent content specific to the particular plotline. There was a rigid hierarchy of roles, and leading characters were revealed through a series of contrasting arias in a pageant of passions. Audience demand for virtuosic display created the two-steps-forward-one-step-back form of the da capo aria, in which the first half of the aria is repeated from the top (da capo) as a vehicle for improvised ornamentation and cadenzas. Dramatic convention then dictated that the singer exit the stage, allowing for applause and even encores. Word and phrase repetitions (“Rejoice, rejoice, rejoice greatly”) accommodated elaborate extensions for the purpose of vocalism and formal structure.

Not so the French. One of the hallmarks of French Baroque musical theater is the seamless transition between recitative, solo aria, and ensembles of duets, trios, and chorus. Rameau sets Voltaire’s text with careful attention to the rhythmic scansion and rhyme of the libretto reflected in the phrasing, pauses, and cadences of each line. Voltaire’s text is full of grandeur and serious philosophic thought. In the Preface to Le temple, he states his intention to replace the vapid eroticism with something more serious and moralistic accompanied by grandiose spectacle; the occasion of a military victory–as opposed to a wedding–gave him license. Though the text itself is much more prolific than its Italian contemporaries, it passes with great dispatch absent repetitions and virtuosic extensions. Arias segué seamlessly from the recitatives without lengthy orchestral introductions, and their content relates directly to the dramatic situation at hand.

This scrupulous respect for the poetry is further reflected in the uniquely French approach to vocal and instrumental ornamentation called agréments. Unlike the bravura roulades and flights of virtuosic passagework of the Italians, these agréments are concise and fleeting emphases of accented syllables, expressive harmonies, and rhythmic stresses using brief and frequent trills, appoggiaturas (a stepwise “leaning” into dissonance followed by its resolution), and ports de voix, a gentle sliding into a note followed by a brief oscillation. The frequent use of these agréments also make the melodic lines more pliable by cushioning large leaps and tapering phrase endings.

The diverse roles in Le Temple were cast from the resident ensemble of the Académie Royale de Musique, founded by Louis XIV and devoted to the exclusive performance of French opera. It developed under the strict control of Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-87), whose works continued to performed alongside those of Rameau and Gluck a century later. This respect for the music of previous generations was rare, as opera companies generally discarded works that were not stylistically au courant. The five singers who created the principal roles were the leading artists in this resident company numbering about fifteen singers. Three of the five sang dual roles: Marie-Jeanne Fesch– known to audiences as Mlle. Chevalier–was the premier sujet (prima donna) of the company. As Lydia, she expressed the nobility and pathos for which she was famous, but the role of Plautine gave her the opportunity to show a tender and somewhat amorous side as well. Marie Fel, soon to become a favorite of Rameau, sang the contrasting roles of Érigone and la Gloire, demonstrating both her strengths in comedic acting as well as brilliant vocalism. Pierre Jélyotte (Apollon and Trajan), known for his supple, sonorous tenor, was also described as “a unique singer, but one without acting skills or looks.” Bacchus was sung by François Poirier, noted for his extensive high tenor (or countertenor) range, called haute contre–a voice preferred by the French over the penchant for mezzo-soprano castratos found in Italian opera seria. The alto part in the choruses is also labeled haut-contre, giving it the scoring of soprano and three-part male chorus (haute-contre, tenor, bass) that continued into the nineteenth century.

The French penchant for dance is reflected in the nomenclature of this opera as an opera-ballet, or ballet héroique. The theatrical dances which developed at the court of Louis XIV abound in this work: passepied, gigue, entrée, forlane, gavotte, loure, and, as customary, a concluding passacaille. The character of each dance type reflects the personality of the roles of the dancers, such as the pastoral gigue for the shepherds and shepherdesses, the lusty forlane for the bacchantes, and in the final scene, a series of entrées accompanying the entrances of Roman nobility, shepherds, soldiers, and youths–each appropriate to its social class.

It’s quite possible that the engaging charm, lyricism, and spectacle of this operatic rarity will prompt the question: Why don’t we see these works performed more often? Though performances of French Baroque opera are becoming somewhat more frequent, Rameau’s operas have yet to be staged by the major opera companies in America. While Handel’s Italian operas appear now with some regularity, they were created with economy in mind; Handel was an impresario subject to the vagaries of ticket sales and audience taste, and expenditures took their toll on his profit margin. Rameau and Voltaire, on the other hand, had the deep pockets of the Bourbon monarchy at their disposal. Such a large cast, dance troupe, large (in Baroque terms) orchestra, lavish spectacle, and uncertain box-office would certainly give modern producers pause. But beyond that lies another challenge: that of historically informed performance. French opera may be the last frontier in Baroque performance practices, requiring a specialized knowledge of period choreography, theatrical practice, and instrumental technique, not to mention a roster of singers who are fluent in the musical language of French declamation and Baroque vocalism. This performance brings these elements together in an unprecedented collaboration in order to give you a rare glimpse of entertainment fit for a king.



by Catherine Turocy

The music of Rameau has been at the very heart of my development. In 1974 at the Aston Magna Festival, with the Baroque Dance Ensemble directed by Dr. Shirley Wynne, I performed in her dramatic choreography to La Cupis from the Cinquième concert, first published in 1741. (Later, Rameau used this chamber music movement in the prologue of Le Temple de la Gloire for the dance of the Muses.) The music is haunting, otherworldly, tender and beautiful. In our performance, at precisely the first note, I fell in love at first sight/sound with the harpsichordist, James Richman. Little did I suspect that Rameau’s music from the prologue would be the prologue to my journey in love and in dance.

After marriage, many productions together and the birth of our first child, James and I combined our two companies to produce Le Temple de la Gloire in NYC, 1991. He was the conductor, I choreographed and danced. We did not know about the original version of the opera. With David Ostwald as the inspired stage director, our New York Times review read: “The teeming stage activity was so well integrated that it was often hard to tell where David Ostwald’s direction left off and Ms. Turocy’s choreography began. To a nonspecialist, the dance, for all its antiquated stylizations, seemed convincing, possessed of a consistent logic and impulse.”

However, the one section of the opera which always bothered me was the very quick moment when Trajan declares he would like the Temple of Glory, celebrating his own triumphs, to become the Temple of Happiness, dedicated to the right to the Pursuit of Happiness for all people, regardless of social class, sex or age. Musically, in the 1746 version, this moment almost slips by as if it were a sudden whim of Trajan’s. Now, in 2017 (yes, decades later) I have the opportunity to realize the original version of the opera and to discover the original context and dramatic build to this moment from the Enlightenment preserved in Voltaire’s libretto and Rameau’s music. I searched the text for a political argument in Act III, but found nothing in the libretto. No, the moment is too important and controversial to put into words. The buildup to the announcement by Trajan is in the dance music. It is a mute declaration of an inner struggle by a non-participant in the dance. How perfect! As the performance reveals itself tonight, follow the thread of the dance throughout the staging to experience the power of this mute but very expressive art. I deeply appreciate the opportunity to be involved in this historic production and I thank Nicholas McGegan, Philharmonia Baroque, the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles and Cal Performances as well as the people and organizations who donated their resources to make these performances possible.



The Remarkable History of Le Temple de la Gloire

by Victor Gavenda

The Grande Écurie—the Great Stable—of the palace of Versailles was alive with light, sound, and movement on this frosty November evening in 1745. The temporary theater housed within had just witnessed the premiere of a new opéra-ballet with music by Jean-Philippe Rameau: Le Temple de la Gloire. But leaving the Écurie behind, a tall, spindly figure emerged into the cold and set off across the vast space of the Place d’Armes, making a beeline for the palace itself.

The man had written the words for the evening’s entertainment, but his goal had been to provide more than mere diversion. On the surface, the opera was a conventional celebration of King Louis XV’s victory in battle. But because this author was none other than that utterly unconventional philosophe, Voltaire, the opera encoded an allegorical “lesson” for His Majesty. In the work, three kings from antiquity attempt to enter the Temple of Glory, established by Apollo and guarded by the Muses. Two of them fail, but the wise and benevolent Trajan succeeds.

Voltaire, eager to learn if his message found its intended recipient, entered the palace and pushed his way into the after-party. Positioning himself near the King, and perhaps with a sly grin, he is reputed to have asked—loud enough for all to hear—“Is Trajan happy?” The silence that followed, and the icy look that Louis shot in Voltaire’s direction, gave him his answer.

Among the many valuable treasures housed in the Jean Gray Hargrove Music Library of the University of California at Berkeley is a unique hybrid book. Part manuscript and part print, the second half of the volume consists of the manuscript score of an 18th-century French opera. The first half is the lavishly printed libretto of the same opera, prepared for the first performance of the work, which took place in 1745 at the great palace of Versailles. The two items were bound together in the 18th century, apparently to serve as a souvenir of the event.

The work itself is Le Temple de la Gloire (The Temple of Glory) and its creators comprised a dream team of their time: the words were written by the leading light of the French Enlightenment, François-Marie Arouet (1694–1778), better known by the nom de plume Voltaire, and the music was by Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683–1764), 18th-century France’s greatest composer.

This combination libretto-score was purchased by the University of California at Berkeley in 1976, and almost immediately scholars noticed that it included music not found in any other source.

Since then, it has been the subject of investigation by several scholars (the present writer included). Most recently, Julien Dubruque of the Institut de Recherche en Musicologie (Université Paris-Sorbonne) has completed a dissertation on the opera that includes the most comprehensive analysis of the book to date. While mysteries remain, the book’s importance as a source for a better understanding of theater, music, and politics during the reign of Louis XV has become clear.

The chief value of the book lies in the manuscript portion, which preserves the only known copy of the original version of the music as the work was first performed at Versailles in November 1745. That version remained unheard for almost 270 years, until Cal Performances at the University of California at Berkeley presented its modern premiere in the spring of 2017, using a new edition compiled by Dubruque. Nicholas McGegan conducted the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale together with an international cast of soloists and the New York Baroque Dance Company in a production co-produced with Philharmonia and the Centre de musique baroque de Versailles.

The theatrical work enshrined in the book, Le Temple de la Gloire, came to be thanks to a confluence of remarkable events. Among them is the presence of Voltaire, the great gadfly of the French establishment, at Versailles (“but not at court,” he often hastened to add). In the salon culture of 1740s Paris, Voltaire was one of the most sought-after party guests, admired for his sparkling wit and encyclopedic knowledge. He had become a particular favorite of one Madame d’Étiolles, and in 1745 when Louis XV took her as his mistress and ennobled her as the Marquise de Pompadour, Voltaire followed as her circle relocated to Versailles. Mme de Pompadour arranged for Voltaire to be made historiographer of France and he was assigned housing in the palace. After years of haranguing the government from the outside, Voltaire tried for a time to effect change from within.

His opportunity arrived in May of 1745 when French forces defeated an army of Dutch, British, and Hanoverian troops at Fontenoy, in what is now Belgium. Thanks to the presence at the battle of Louis XV the King’s popularity reached its peak. (Ironically, this was to be the last occasion a French king would ever lead his troops into battle.)

The nation was swept up in a wave of patriotic feeling, and Voltaire was not immune. He tossed off a 350-line poem in honor of Louis and later that summer the Duc de Richelieu, chamberlain to the King and one of Voltaire’s oldest friends, commissioned him to write the words for a new opera commemorating the victory with music to be provided by Rameau.

This would not be the first collaboration between the two giants; indeed, several of Voltaire’s previous attempts at writing opera (all abortive) had involved Rameau. Their first joint work was Samson (1734), a biblical epic that displayed its author’s libertarian and anticlerical bias. Plans for a production crumbled even before the work was finished. Voltaire spread the rumor that religious censorship was to blame, but modern scholars suspect the cause was rather the artistic differences between author and composer. Indeed, Rameau never finished the score and the music is lost.

The two men enjoyed an awkward relationship. They acknowledged each other’s talents, but they had opposing ideas about opera. Rameau had turned the art form upside down with his dazzling music and innovative approach to the use of dance, but he had left in place the key focus of French opera: love. Voltaire, for his part, brought the same reforming zeal to opera that he had already tried to apply to society. He tried to explain himself in a letter to Rameau (probably from the fall of 1734):

Your music is admirable, but even that has made you enemies, and cruel ones at that…. mine are now spreading the slander that there are impious moments in Samson. Now I must also correct the audience’s preconceptions: they will possibly find it difficult to understand an operatic heroine who is not in love at any point in the opera—and whilst my slanderers say that my work is impious, the audience will possibly decide that it is too virtuous and severe.

Fast-forward now to 1745, and we find that same aesthetic tension between Voltaire and Rameau plays a role in the curious history of Le Temple de la Gloire.


The glittering premiere of the work took place on November 27, 1745 and was repeated on December 4. For all its splendor, the great Château de Versailles had no permanent opera house until 1770. Thus Temple was performed in a temporary theater in the Grande Écurie across the street from the palace. This theater had been put up earlier in the year for the celebrations surrounding the wedding of the Dauphin; entertainments included contributions by Voltaire and Rameau.

After these first two performances, the production was given to the Paris Opera where it was remounted but withdrawn after a handful of performances. Author and composer set to work on the piece, and the revised version had a fresh premiere on April 19, 1746, opening the post-Lenten theater season. Alas, this version had no more success than the first, and was withdrawn after less than a month.

So, what happened? Why was the initial version of Le Temple de la Gloire a commercial flop? What did Voltaire and Rameau do to the work to try to salvage it? And why were their efforts in vain?

For many years, these questions were difficult to answer because our knowledge of the 1745 version was incomplete. The score of neither version was ever printed, and the surviving manuscript copies known until recently transmit only the later 1746 version. All that was known of the 1745 music were the portions of the opera that did not change in the course of revision, as well as a few fragments of the original music that can be found in the “production score” preserved in the Bibliothèque de l’Opéra in Paris. This score was used for rehearsals and performances and contains markings by the conductor (and in this case, a few pages in the hand of the composer himself).

But many copies of the libretto exist, and in the absence of music, the words can tell us much. These were printed and sold to the audience for each performance (for court spectacles they were distributed gratis). The librettos for the Versailles performances, like the one in the Berkeley volume, were beautifully produced, with exquisitely engraved frontispieces for each act.


To a typical mid-18th-century Parisian opera-goer, Le Temple de la Gloire belongs to the genre of opéra-ballet. This genre became popular in the early part of the century, and expresses that age’s rococo taste for lightweight entertainment, as opposed to the ponderous serious operas, the tragédies en musique, of the preceding era of Louis XIV. Typically in three or four acts with a prologue, a single plot did not drive the action from beginning to end. The story of each act was independent of the others, but all of the acts shared a common theme—such as a specific aspect of love—which was typically set out in an allegorical prologue.

What the audience in the Grande Écurie experienced that night in 1745 was very different, however. Instead of a string of diverting love stories, they were treated to three examples of kingship: two bad, and one good. The opening Prologue set the theme: The Muses tend the Temple of Glory on Mount Parnassus, but the figure of Envy (backed up by an army of demons) tries to gain entry by force. A cohort of heroes led by Apollo repulses the attack, and Envy is subdued. Apollo proclaims that only those who possess a great heart are worthy of admission to the Temple.

Each of the three acts shows the attempt of a king from antiquity to enter the Temple. The first, Bélus, bursts in on a peaceful gathering of pastoral folk, is disgusted by their “softness,” and is rejected from the Temple for being a bloodthirsty conqueror. Bacchus, king No. 2, is turned away because his fame for inventing wine and spreading debauchery does not qualify him; only virtuous deeds can do that.

Finally, we meet Trajan. After defeating five rebel kings, he pardons them magnanimously. Glory descends with a crown of laurel and invites Trajan to enter the Temple, but he refuses the offer and asks the gods to transform the Temple of Glory into a Temple of Happiness and to welcome all of humanity. A lengthy sung and danced divertissement closes the opera.

The audience hardly knew what to make of this. The music was generally agreed to be excellent, but… the words! Voltaire had used his privileged situation at the heart of royal power to deliver an object-lesson in the proper behavior of an enlightened ruler directly to Louis XV: A great king, worthy of Glory, is not a conqueror or a tyrant, but one who makes his people happy.

It’s easy to imagine that the King would not appreciate being lectured by a social inferior (not to mention a trenchant critic of the establishment). Thus the famous—and possibly apocryphal—anecdote of Voltaire’s stage-whispered “Is Trajan pleased?” and Louis’ stony silence in response rings true.

When the production moved to Paris, the public was even less kind. Wags complained that if they wanted a sermon on ethics, they would go to hear a Latin cantata at a Jesuit college. Rameau and Voltaire withdrew the work from the stage and set about revamping it.

The new version that premiered in April 1746 shows the triumph of Rameau’s musical and theatrical sensibilities over Voltaire’s political agenda. The overall framework of the drama remains the same, but the harsh actions of the main players are softened, and love is allowed a larger role. In spite of the revisions, the work once again failed to catch fire. But bits of the opera did live on, as individual numbers were recycled in operas by Rameau and other composers as well.

In the end the event was a pivotal moment in the careers of both men. Rameau’s contribution met with favor from the King, and he was rewarded with a court appointment and a royal pension for life. Voltaire, however, finally realized that he was out of his element. After signing over his share of the proceeds from the opera to Rameau, involvement in a fresh scandal soon drove him from Versailles, and years later he wrote of his time as a courtier: “Of all the time that I have wasted in my life, it was this period that I regret the most.”


The skeletal nature of the Berkeley score, including only the melody and bass parts, implies that it was intended as a model for a printed score (this kind of short score was typical of 18th-century French opera publications, equivalent to today’s piano-vocal score); but plans for publication seem to have been shelved. Then the manuscript disappears from history for a time. In the early 20th century, the great French pianist Alfred Cortot acquired it, and after his death in 1962 the volume was purchased by the Berkeley music library.

The manuscript has gradually yielded its secrets under close scholarly scrutiny. It now seems clear that it was copied directly from an early state of the “production score” mentioned earlier. The scribes who wrote out the Berkeley score also worked on the production score, and their number included the principal copyist of the Paris Opera. Even more intriguing, small discrepancies between the two scores seem to indicate that the Berkeley score was copied out while the opera was still in rehearsal, and the musical content was still in flux.

For the past two decades, Davitt Moroney, Professor of Music at UC Berkeley, has been a member of the international team of experts responsible for issuing the new edition of Rameau’s complete works, says of this book: “This manuscript is one of the most important documents in the Berkeley music library. It is the only source for a good deal of music by one of the greatest composers of the 18th century. Furthermore, it preserves a record of his collaboration with another of the greatest figures of his time, Voltaire, at a moment when both men are at the peak of their careers and influence.”

Victor Gavenda is a freelance writer and editor living in Albany, CA. In his youth he was a PhD candidate in music history studying the work of Rameau, spending several years attempting to untangle the mysteries of the various sources of Le Temple de la Gloire. Today he is choirmaster at St. Clement’s Episcopal Church in Berkeley, and he tunes the harpsichords at UC Berkeley.

ONLINE VIEW: Cast & Crew List

(in order of vocal appearance; dance roles in italics)


L’ENVIE: Marc Labonnette
APOLLON: Aaron Sheehan

UNE PRÊTRESSE: Caroline Copeland
UN HÉRO: Olsi Gjeci
LES HÉROES: Brynt Beitman, Andrew Trego, Caroline Copeland, Carly Fox Horton, Alexis Silver, Meggi Sweeney Smith

Philharmonia Chorale

Ely Sonny Orquiza, Carlos Venturo, Adam Young

Karin Jensen, Yara Jamil Kanaaneh, Rachel Levin, Sarah Sophia Pun, Elizabeth du Val


LYDIE: Chantal Santon-Jeffery
ARSINE: Gabrielle Philiponet
UNE BERGÈRE: Camille Ortiz-Lafont
UN BERGER: Artavazd Sargsyan
BÉLUS: Philippe-Nicolas Martin
APOLLON: Aaron Sheehan

PETIT CHŒUR DES BERGERS ET BERGÈRES: Jennifer Ashworth, David Kurtenbach, Heidi Waterman
LES MUSES: Jennifer Ashworth, Tonia d’Amelio, Heidi Waterman

LES BERGERS ET BERGÈRES: Caroline Copeland (soloist) and Company

Philharmonia Chorale

Ely Sonny Orquiza, Raul Torres, Carlos Venturo, Adam Young

Andrew Leathers, Simon Palczynski, James Troup, Miles Walls


UNE PRÊTRESSE: Gabrielle Philiponet
UN GUERRIER: Philippe-Nicolas Martin
UNE BACCHANTE: Chantal Santon-Jeffery
BACCHUS: Artavazd Sargsyan
ÉRIGONE: Camille Ortiz-Lafont

LES HÉROES: Brynt Beitman, Olsi Gjeci
UNE PRÊTRESSE: Caroline Copeland
UNE BACCHANTE: Carly Fox Horton
LES BÛCHERONS: Olsi Gjeci, Andrew Trego
LES SATYRES: Brynt Beitman, Matthew Ting
UNE FAUNE: Alexis Silver
L’AUTRUCHE: Meggi Sweeney Smith

Philharmonia Chorale


PLAUTINE: Gabrielle Philiponet
JUNIE: Camille Ortiz-Lafont
FANNIE: Tonia d’Amelio
TRAJAN: Aaron Sheehan
LA GLOIRE: Chantal Santon-Jeffery
UN GUERRIER: Philippe-Nicolas Martin
LES CINQ ROIS: Kevin Gibbs, David Kurtenbach, Marc Labonnette, Philippe-Nicolas Martin, Artavazd Sargsyan

MARS: Andrew Trego
VENUS: Meggi Sweeney Smith

LES DANSEURS ROMAINS DE LA COUR: Brynt Beitman, Olsi Gjeci, Carly Fox Horton, Alexis Silver
LE BERGER ET BERGÈRE: Matthew Ting & Caroline Copeland

Philharmonia Chorale


from the Berkeley Ballet School


Jory Vinikour, repetiteur
Patricia Kristof Moy, French language & diction coach
Benoît Dratwicki, musical preparation
Julien Dubruque, scientific advisor
Rachel List, dance rehearsal director

Bethanie Baeyen, production stage manager
Renae Davison, assistant stage manager
Leandra Watson, costume coordinator
Kitty Schweizer, costume workshop
Mazena Puksto, wig & makeup designer
Jennifer Gilbert, assistant wig & makeup designer
Jenn “Jersey” Greene, production assistant & dresser
Alex Hagman, stitcher & dresser
Caylyn Skoog, dresser
Corie Altaffer, dresser
Adam Shaw, set illustrator
Chris Bergen, supertitle translator
DeAnna Scherer, cueing score preparation

Wigs and makeup provided and executed by Elsen Associates.
Scenery and props constructed by Rooster Productions, Inc.
Costumes prepared by Seams Unlimited.
Ostrich design by Jane Stein.

Special thanks to Hofstra University for contributing rehearsal space for NYBDC.
Thank you to The New York Baroque Dance Company for in-kind services assisting with costumes.

ONLINE VIEW: Texts & Translations




Le théâtre représente la caverne de l’Envie. On voit à travers les ouvertures de la caverne, une partie du temple de la Gloire qui est dans le fond, et les berceaux des Muses, qui sont sur les ailes.

Scène 1

L’Envie, une torche à la main, Démons de la Suite d l’Envie

Profonds abîmes du Ténare,
Nuit affreuse, éternelle nuit,
Dieux de l’oubli, dieux du Tartare,
Éclipsez le jour qui me luit.
Démons, apportez-moi votre secours barbare
Contre le dieu qui me poursuit.

Profonds abîmes du Ténare,
Nuit affreuse, éternelle nuit,
Dieux de l’oubli, dieux du Tartare,
Éclipsez le jour qui me luit.

Les Muses et la Gloire ont élevé leur temple
Dans ces paisibles lieux :
Qu’avec horreur je les contemple !
Que leur éclat blesse mes yeux !

Profonds abîmes du Ténare,
Nuit affreuse, éternelle nuit,
Dieux de l’oubli, dieux du Tartare,
Éclipsez le jour qui me luit.

Chœur avec coryphée
Notre gloire est de détruire,
Notre sort est de nuire ;
Renversons ces affreux monumens.
Nos coups redoutables
Sont plus inévitables
Que la mort et le temps.

Renversez ces affreux monumens.
Vos coups redoutables
Sont plus inévitables
Que la mort et le temps.

Hâtez-vous, vengez mon outrage ;
Des Muses que je hais embrasez le bocage ;
Écrasez sous ces fondements,
Et la Gloire, et son temple, et ses heureux enfans
Que je hais encor davantage.
Hâtez-vous, vengez mon outrage,
Démons, ennemis des vivans,
Donnez ce spectacle à ma rage.

Air pour les Démons et les Héros
Les Suivants de l’Envie dansent et forment un ballet figure.

Un Héros vient au milieu de ces Démons, étonnées à son approche, il se voit interrompu par les Suivans de l’Envie, qui veulent en vain l’effrayer

Scène 2

Apollon, l’Envie, Muses et Demi-dieux de la Suite d’Apollon, Démons de la Suite d l’Envie, Héros

Arrêtez, monstres furieux.
Fuis mes traits, crains mes feux, implacable furie.

Non, ni les mortels, ni les Dieux
Ne pourront désarmer l’Envie.

Oses-tu suivre encore mes pas ?
Oses-tu soutenir l’éclat de ma lumière?

J’infecterai plus de climats,
Que tu n’en vois dans ta carrière.

Muses et demi-dieux, vengez-moi, vengez-vous.

Les héros et les demi-dieux saisissent l’Envie.

Non, c’est en vain que l’on m’arrête.

Etouffez ces serpents qui sifflent sur sa tête.

Ils renaîtront cent fois pour servir mon courroux.

Le ciel ne permet pas que ce monstre périsse,
Il est immortel comme nous :
Qu’il souffre un éternel supplice.
Que du bonheur du monde il soir infortuné ;
Qu’auprès de la Gloire il gémisse,
Qu’à son trône il soit enchaîné.

L’antre de l’Envie s’ouvre et Laisse voir le temple de la Gloire ; on l’enchaîne aux pieds du trône de cette déesse.

Scène 3

Apollon, Muses et Demi-dieux de la Suite d’Apollon, Héros

Ce monstre toujours terrible
Sera toujours abattu,
Les arts, la gloire, la vertu
Nourriront sa rage inflexible.

Récitatif, ariette
APOLLON, aux Muses
Vous, entre sa caverne horrible
Et ce temple superbe à la Gloire élevé,
Muses, chantez en paix sur ce coteau paisible,
Que les Dieux vous ont reserve.

La caverne de l’Envie achève de disparoître. On voit les deux coteaux du Parnasse. Des berceaux ornés de guirlandes de fleurs sont à mi-côte et le fond du théâtre est composé de trois arcades de verdure, à travers lesquelles on voit le temple de la Gloire dans le lointain.

APOLLON continue
La Gloire en ce jour memorable
Doit couronner le plus grand des vainqueurs,
La Gloire et les Muses sont sœurs.
Prêtez à ses attraits un charme inalterable.

Air pour les Héros
Air pour les Muses
Air pour les Héros (reprise)

Nous calmons les alarmes,
Nous chantons, nous donnons la paix ;
Mais tous les cœurs ne sont pas faits
Pour sentir le prix de nos charmes.

Entracte. Ouverture (reprise)




Envy’s cave. A section of the Temple of Glory is visible at the back of the stage through openings in the cave walls, and the vaulted arches of the Muses at the sides. 

Scene 1

Envy, a torch in her hand, Demons in Envy’s service

Profound abysses of the underworld,
Dreadful and eternal night,
Gods of oblivion, gods of Tartarus,
Eclipse this day and its light.
Demons, lend me your barbarous aid
Against the god who pursues me.

Profound abysses of the underworld,
Dreadful and eternal night,
Gods of forgetfulness, gods of Tartarus,
Eclipse this day and its light.

The Muses and Glory have raised their temple
In this peaceful place;
I look upon them with horror;
Their light blinds my eyes!

Profound abysses of the underworld,
Dreadful and eternal night,
Gods of forgetfulness, gods of Tartarus,
Eclipse this day and its light.

Chorus with dancers
Our glory lies in destruction,
Our fate is to harm;=
Let us tear down these hideous monuments.
Our dreadful blows
Are as inexorable
As death and time.

Let us tear down these hideous monuments.
Your dreadful blows
Are as inexorable
As death and time.

Make haste and avenge this outrage;
Burn down the grove of the hated Muses,
Destroy Glory’s temple,
Crush her and her happy children
Whom I hate even more, in its ruins.
Hasten to avenge this outrage,
Demons, enemies of the living,
Let my rage witness these events!

Air for the Demons and Heroes
Envy’s followers dance.

A Hero strides into the midst of the Demons, who are amazed at his arrival. He is challenged by Envy’s followers, who seek to terrify him in vain.

Scene 2

Apollo, Envy, Muses and Demigods in Apollo’s service, Demons in Envy’s service, Heroes

Hold, you furious monsters.
Flee from me and fear my fire, implacable Fury.

No, for neither mortal man nor the Gods
Can make Envy surrender.

Do you dare to pursue me now?
Do you dare to feel the blaze and burn of my light?

My influence will be felt in more lands
Than you will ever see during your life.

Muses, demigods, avenge us all!

The Hero and the Demigods seize Envy.

No, you lay hands on me in vain.

Strangle the serpents that hiss upon her head.

They will be reborn one hundred times over to serve my wrath.

Heaven will not permit this monster to die,
for she is as immortal as we:
Let her then suffer eternal torture:
As happy as the world is, let her be unhappy;
Since she longed for Glory,
Let her be chained to Glory’s throne.

Envy’s cave opens and reveals the Temple of Glory; Envy is chained to the base of Glory’s throne.

Scene 3

Apollo, Muses and Demigods in Apollo’s service, Heroes

This monster, always fearsome,
Will always be defeated;
The arts, glory, and virtue
Only feed her unceasing wrath.

Recitative, arietta
APOLLO, to the Muses
You Muses, enter her fearful cave
And this proud temple dedicated to Glory;
Sing, o Muses, on this peaceful slope
That the Gods have set aside for you.

Envy’s cave disappears. We see the twin slopes of Parnassus. Arches decorated with flowers are at halfway point; behind we see three stretches of greenery, with the Temple of Glory in the distance.

APOLLO continues
Glory, on this memorable day,
Must crown the greatest of conquerors.
Glory and the Muses are sisters;
May her face always be filled with charm.

Air for the Heroes
Air for the Muses

Air for the Heroes (reprise)

We quieten every alarm,
We sing, and we bring sweet peace;
Not every heart, however, can fully
Comprehend the price of our charms.

Entr’acte. Overture (reprise)


Le théâtre représente le bocage des Muses. Les deux côtés du théâtre sont formés des deux collines du Parnasse. Des berceaux entrelacés de Lauriers et de fleurs, règnent sur le penchant des collines ; au-dessous sont des grottes percées à jour, ornées comme les berceaux, dans lesquelles sont des Bergers et Bergères ; le fond est composé de trois grands berceaux en architecture.

Scène 1

Lydie, Arcine, Bergers et Bergères

Oui, parmi ces Bergers aux Muses consacrés,
Loin d’un tyran superbe et d’un amant volage,
Je trouverai la paix, je calmerai l’orage
Qui trouble mes sens déchirés.

Dans ces retraites paisibles,
Les Muses doivent calmer
Les cœurs purs, les cœurs sensibles,
Que la cour peut opprimer.
Cependant vous pleurez ; votre oeil en vain contemple
Ces bois, ces Nymphes, ces Pasteurs ;
De leur tranquillité suivez l’heureux exemple.

La Gloire a vers ces lieux fait élever son temple,
La honte habite dans Mon cœur !
La Gloire en ce jour même, au plus grand roi du monde,
Doit donner de ses mains un laurier immortel ;
Bélus doit l’obtenir.

Votre douleur profonde
Redouble à ce nom si cruel.

Bélus va triompher de l’Asie enchaînée,
Mon cœur et mes états sont au rang des vaincus,
L’ingrat me promettoit un brillant hyménée :
Il me trompait ; du moins il ne me trompe plus !
Il triomphe, je meurs, et meurs abandonee !

Il a trahi vingt rois ; il trahit vos appas,
Il ne connaît qu’une aveugle puissance.

Mais vers la Gloire il adresse ses pas,
Pourra-t’il sans rougir, soutenir ma presence ?

Les tyrans ne rougissent pas.

Quoi ! tant de barbarie avec tant de vaillance !

Ô Muses, soyez mon appui ;
Secourez moi contre moi-même,
Ne permettez pas que j’aime
Un tyran qui n’aime que lui.

Les Bergers et Bergères, consacrés aux Muses, sortent des antres du Parnasse, au son des instrumens champêtres.

Scène 2

Lydie, Arsine, une Bergère, un Berger, un autre Berger, Bergers et Bergères

Deux musettes, deux hautbois et deux bassons sur le théâtre.

Musette en rondeau pour l’entrée des Bergers et Bergères

Récitatif et chœur
LYDIE, aux bergers
Venez, tendres Bergers, vous qui plaignez mes larmes,
Mortels heureux, des Muses inspirés,
Dans mon cœur agité répandez tous les charmes
De la paix que vous célébrez.

Oserons-nous chanter sur nos faibles musettes,
Lorsque les horribles trompettes
Ont épouvanté les échos !

Que veulent donc tous ces héros ?
Pourquoi troublent-ils nos retraites ?

Au temple de la Gloire ils cherchent le bonheur.

Il est aux lieux où vous êtes,
Il est au fond de notre cœur.

Première et deuxième gavottes en musette pour les Bergers et Bergères

Vers ce temple, où la Mémoire
Consacre les noms fameux,
Nous ne levons point nos yeux,
Les Bergers sont assez heureux
Pour voir au moins que la Gloire
N’est point faite pour eux.

On entend un bruit de timbales et de trompettes.

CHŒUR DE GUERRIERS, qu’on ne voit pas encore
La guerre sanglante,
La mort, l’épouvante,
Signalent nos fureurs :
Livrons-nous un passage,
À travers le carnage,
Au faîte des grandeurs.

Petit chœur et récitatif
Quels sons affreux ! quel bruit sauvage !
Ô Muses, protégez nos fortunés climats.

O Gloire, dont le nom semble avoir tant d’appas,
Seroit-ce là votre langage?

Scène 3

Bélus, Lydie, Arsine, une Bergère, un Berger, un autre Berger, Rois captifs et Soldats de la Suite de Bélus, Bergers et Bergères

Bélus paroît sous le berceau du milieu, entouré de ses Guerriers ; il est sur un trône porté par huit Rois enchaînés.

Récitatif et airs
Rois qui portez mon trône, esclaves couronés,
Que j’ai daigné choisir pour orner ma victoire,
Allez, allez m’ouvrir le temple de la Gloire,
Préparez les honneurs qui me sont destinés.

Il descend et continue.

Je veux que votre orgueil seconde
Les soins de ma grandeur ;
La Gloire, en m’élevant au premier rang du monde.
Honore assez votre malheur.

Les Rois captifs et la suite de Bélus sortent. On entend une musique douce.

Mais quels accens pleins de mollesse
Offensent mon oreille et révoltent mon cœur !

L’humanité, grands dieux ! est-elle une faiblesse ?
Parjure amant, cruel vainqueur,
Mes cris te poursuivront sans cesse.

Vos plaintes et vos cris ne peuvent m’arrêter ;
La Gloire loin de vous m’appelle ;
Si je pouvais vous écouter,
Je deviendrais indigne d’elle.

Non, la Gloire n’est point barbare, et sans pitié,
Non, tu te fais des dieux à toi même semblables ;
À leurs autels tu n’as sacrifié
Que les pleurs et le sang des mortels misérables.

Ne condamnez point mes exploits ;
Quand on se veut rendre le maître,
On est malgré soi, quelquefois
Plus cruel qu’on ne voudrait être.

Que je hais tes exploits heureux !
Que le sort t’a changé ! Que ta grandeur t’égare !
Peut-être es-tu né généreux ;
Ton bonheur t’a rendu barbare.

Je suis né pour dompter, pour changer l’univers :
Le foible oiseau, dans un bocage
Fait entendre ses doux concerts ;
L’aigle qui vole en haut des airs,
Porte la foudre, et le ravage.
Cessez de m’arrêter par des murmures vains,
Et laissez-moi remplir mes augustes destins.

Bélus sort, pour aller au temple.

Scène 4

Lydie, Arsine, Bergers et Bergères

O Muses, puissantes déesses,
De cet ambitieux fléchissez la fierté ;
Secourez-moi contre sa cruauté,
Ou du moins contre mes faiblesses.

Scène 5 

Apollon et les Muses descendant dans un char qui repose par les deux bouts sur les collines du Parnasse.

Petit chœur
Nous adoucissons
Par nos arts aimables,
Les cœurs impitoyables,
Ou nous les punissons.

Bergers, qui dans nos bocages
Apprîtes nos chants divins,
Vous calmez les monstres sauvages,
Fléchissez les cruels humains.

Air pour les Bergers et Bergères

Vole, vole, charmant Amour,
Dieu tendre, Dieu paisible, Désarme la fureur.
Prête à nos foibles voix ton pouvoir invincible
Qui porte la paix dans un cœur,
Viens punir une ame inflexible
En la comblant de la faveur.

Vole, vole, charmant Amour,
Dieu tendre, Dieu paisible, Désarme la fureur.

Gigue en rondeau pour les Bergers et Bergères

Scène 6

Bélus rentre, suivi de ses Guerriers.

Récitatif, chœur, air et duo
Quoi ! ce temple pour moi ne s’ouvre point encore ?
Quoi ! cette Gloire que j’adore,
Près de ces lieux prépara mes autels ;
Et je ne vois que de foibles mortels,
Et de foibles Dieux que j’ignore ?

C’est assez vous faire craindre,
Faites vous enfin chérir ;
Ah ! qu’un grand cœur est à plaindre,
Quand rien ne peut l’attendrir !

D’une beauté tendre et soumise,
Si tu trahis les appas,
Cruel vainqueur, n’espère pas
Que la Gloire te favorise.

Quoi ! vers la Gloire il a porté ses pas,
Et son cœur seroit infidelle ?
Ah ! parmi nous une honte éternelle
Est le supplice des ingrats, Une honte…

Qu’entends-je ! Il est au monde un peuple qui m’offense ?
Quelle est la foible voix qui murmure en ces lieux,
Quand la terre tremble en silence ?
Soldat, délivrez moi de ce peuple odieux.

Petit chœur accompagné
Arrête, respecte les Dieux
Qui protègent l’innocence.

Dieux ! oseraient-ils suspendre ma vengeance ?

Ciel ! couvrez-vous de feux ; tonnerres, éclatez,
Tremble, fuis les Dieux irrités.

On entend le tonnerre, et des éclairs partent du char où sont les Muses avec Apollon.

Loin du temple de la Gloire,
Cours au temple de la Fureur.
On gardera de toi l’éternelle mémoire,
Avec une éternelle horreur.

Ciel ! couvrez-vous de feux ; tonnerres, éclatez,
Tremble, fuis les Dieux irrités.

Tonnerre et air
Non, je ne tremble point, je brave le tonnerre ;
Je méprise ce temple, et je hais les humains ;
J’embraserai de mes puissantes mains,
Les tristes restes de la terre.

Petit chœur et chœur
Cœur implacable,
Apprens à trembler,
Les Dieux vont immoler
Ce fortuné coupable.

Trio et grand chœur

Toi qui gémis d’un amour déplorable,
Éteins ses feux, brise ses traits ;
Goûte par nos bienfaits
Un calme inalterable,
D’un amour déplorable, brise les traits.


The grove of the Muses. The twin hills of Parnassus form the two sides of the theatre. Vaulted arches decorated with laurel wreaths and flowers are on the slopes of the hills; below these are newly created grottoes decorated with flowers, occupied by shepherds and shepherdesses. Three large architectural arches stand at the rear of the stage.

Scene 1

Lydie, Arsine, Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Yes, amongst these shepherds devoted to the Muses,
Far from a proud tyrant and an inconstant lover,
I shall find peace; I shall calm the storm
That troubles my racked soul.

In these peaceful surroundings,
The Muses can calm
The pure and sensitive hearts
That a Court can oppress.
Nonetheless, you weep: in vain you behold
These woods, these nymphs, these shepherds.
Take their happy and tranquil life as your example.

Glory has raised her temple close to here;
Shame fills my heart!
Glory today, with her own hands, will present
The greatest king of the world with a laurel wreath.
It will be given to Bélus.

Your bitter sorrow is made
Twice as bitter by this cruel name.

Bélus will triumph over fettered Asia,
My heart and my emotions are with the conquered.
The ungrateful man promised me a splendid wedding:
He deceived me; at least he will not deceive me again!
He triumphs, while I die, and die abandoned!

He has betrayed twenty kings and now betrays your charms;
Blind power is his only quality.

He turns his steps now towards Glory;
Will he be able to bear my presence without feeling shame?

Tyrants have no shame.

Gods! So much barbarity with so much valour!

O Muses, lend me your aid;
Protect me against myself:
Do not allow that I might love
A tyrant who only loves himself.

The Shepherds and Shepherdesses who serve the Muses come forth from the caves of Parnassus to the sound of rustic instruments.

Scene 2

Lydie, Arsine, A Shepherdess, two Shepherds, other Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Two bagpipes, two oboes and two bassoons on stage.

Musette en rondeau for the entrance of the Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Recitative and chorus
LYDIE, to the Shepherds
Come, gentle shepherds, you who take pity on my sorrow
Happy mortals, inspired by the Muses,
Spread the delights of the peace that you celebrate
Within my wounded heart.

How should we dare to sing to our poor pipes
When dreadful trumpets
Terrify the echoes themselves!

What is it that these heroes wish?
Why do they disturb our peaceful retreats?

They seek their happiness at the temple of Glory.

Happiness dwells where you now find yourself;
It dwells in the depths of our hearts.

First and second gavottes en musette for the Shepherds and Shepherdesses

We never raise our glance
Towards this temple, where Memory
Has sanctified names of renown;
Shepherds, at least, are happy enough
To understand that Glory
Was never intended for them.

The noise of drums and a blast of trumpets.

CHORUS OF WARRIORS, not yet visible
Blood-soaked war
And terrifying death
Are the mark of our fury:
We will create a passage
Through this carnage
At the height of our greatness.

Semichorus and recitative
What dreadful sounds and savage noises!
O Muses, protect our fortunate lands.

O Glory, whose name is so alluring,
Is this truly your language?

Scene 3

Bélus, Lydie, Arsine, a shepherdess, a shepherd, captured kings, warriors in Bélus’ service, shepherds and shepherdesses.

Bélus appears under the central arch at the back of the stage, surrounded by his Warriors; he is seated on a throne borne aloft by eight kings in fetters.

Recitative and airs
Kings who bear my throne, crowned slaves
Whom I deigned to choose to give lustre to my victory,
Go now and open the temple of Glory for me.
Prepare the honours that are destined for me.

He descends from the throne and continues.

My wish is that your pride should
Minister to the needs of my greatness;
Glory, in raising me to high worldly rank,
Thus also honours your misfortune.

The captive kings and Bélus’ followers leave. Sweet music is heard.

But what sounds, so soft and feeble,
Now offend my ear and disgust my heart!

Great gods, is humanity such a weakness?
Disloyal lover, cruel conqueror,
My cries shall follow you without end.

Your cries and your moans cannot halt me;
Glory now calls me far from you.
If I should listen to you,
I would be unworthy of her.

No, for Glory is neither barbarous nor pitiless.
No, for you refashion the Gods in your own image.
All that you have sacrificed at their altars
Is the blood and the tears of miserable mortals.

You may not condemn my actions:
He who will become a ruler is often,
Despite himself, required to be
More cruel than he might wish.

How I hate your fortunate deeds!
How fate has changed you! How your grandeur has lessened!
Perhaps you were indeed born generous;
Your fortune has made you a barbarian.

I was born to rule, to change the universe:
A small bird sings its sweet song
In a bosky glade;
The eagle who flies high above
On the wings of thunder brings devastation.
Do not delay me further with your vain pleas;
Let me fulfill my august destiny.

Bélus leaves to go to the temple.

Scene 4

Lydie, Arsine, Shepherds and Shepherdesses

O Muses, powerful Goddesses,
Soften the pride of that ambitious man;
Assist me as I fight against his cruelty,
Or at least against my own weakness.

Scene 5

Apollo and the Muses descend in a chariot that comes to rest on the slopes of Parnassus

We soften
Hearts that feel no pity
Through our kindly arts,
Or we punish them.

You shepherds, who in our glades
Have learnt our celestial songs,
Calm the savage monsters,
Soften the cruelty of these mortals.

Air for the Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Fly, fly, charming Cupid,
God of tenderness and of peace, disarm their fury.
Lend our weak voices your invincible power
That brings peace into all hearts;
Come, punish an unbending soul
By filling it with your grace.

Fly, fly, charming Cupid,
God of tenderness and of peace, disarm their fury.

Gigue en rondeau for the Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Scene 6

Bélus returns, followed by his Warriors.

Recitative, chorus, air and duet
So, this temple still refuses to open to me?
So, I raised altars near this place
For this Glory whom I adore,
And I see only weak mortals,
And feeble Gods unknown to me?

Enough of making yourself feared,
Now you must make yourself loved.
How much a great heart is to be pitied,
When nothing can soften it!

If you should betray the delights
Of a tender and modest beauty,
Cruel conqueror, do not hope
That Glory will favour you.

So! He dares to approach Glory
And his heart is untrue?
Ah, amongst us, eternal shame
Is the punishment for such ingratitude. Shame…

What do I hear? A race in this world that gives me offence?
What is the weak voice that murmurs here,
While the earth trembles in silence?
Soldiers, rid me of this hateful race.

Accompanied semichorus
Halt, respect the gods
Who protect innocence.

Gods! Would they dare to delay my vengeance?

Ye heavens, drape yourselves in fire; burst forth, ye thunders.
Tremble, and flee the wrath-filled gods.

Thunder is heard; lightning flashes forth from the chariot containing Apollo and the Muses.

Hasten to the temple of Fury,
far from that of Glory.
You will always be remembered
with eternal horror.

Ye heavens, drape yourselves in fire; burst forth, ye thunders.
Tremble, and flee the wrath-filled gods.

Tonnerre and air
No, I have no fear, I defy the thunder;
I despise this temple, and I hate mortals;
I will set fire to the sad remains of the earth
With my own powerful hands.

Semichorus and chorus
Implacable heart,
Learn to tremble;
The gods will sacrifice
This guilty and wealthy man.

Trio and large chorus
You who suffer from this lamentable love,
Put out its fires, break its bonds;
Thanks to our kindness, you may now
Taste eternal calm and peace.
Break the bonds of this lamentable love.


Le théâtre représente l’avenue et le frontispice du temple de la Gloire ; Le trône que la Gloire a préparé pour celui qu’elle doit nommer le plus grand des hommes, est vu dans l’arrière-théâtre ; il est supporté par des Vertus, et l’on y monte par plusieurs degrés.

Scène 1

Le grand Prêtre de la Gloire, couronné de lauriers, une palme à la main ; entouré d’une Prêtresse, des Prêtres et des Prêtresses de la Gloire, et de Héros 


Chœur avec coryphées
Gloire enchanteresse,
Superbe maîtresse
Des rois, des vainqueurs ;
La froide vieillesse,
L’ardente jeunesse,
Briguent tes faveurs.

Gloire enchanteresse, etc.

Le prétendu sage
Croit avoir brisé
Ton noble esclavage :
Il s’est abuse,
C’est un amant méprisé,
Et son dépit est un hommage.

Déesse des héros, du vrai sage, et des rois,
Source noble et féconde
Et des vertus et des exploits :
Ô Gloire, c’est ici que ta puissante voix
Doit nommer par un juste choix
Le premier des maîtres du monde.

Venez, venez, accourez tous,
Arbitres de la paix, et foudres de la guerre,
Vous qui calmez, vous qui domptez la terre,
Nous allons couronner le plus digne de vous.

Air pour les Héros et les Prêtresses de la Gloire

Scène 2

Les Suivans de Bacchus arrivent, avec des Bacchantes et des Ménades, couronnés de lierre, le thyrse à la main.

Un Guerrier de la suite de Bacchus, une Bacchante, le grand Prêtre de la Gloire, une Prêtresse, Suivans de Bacchus, Prêtres et Prêtresses de la Gloire, Héros

Entrée des Suivans de Bacchus

Air, chœur avec coryphée
UN GUERRIER, suivant de Bacchus
Bacchus est en tous lieux notre guide invincible,
Ce héros fier et bienfaisant,
Est toujours aimable et terrible :
Préparez le prix qui l’attend.

Le dieu des plaisirs va paroître,
Nous annonçons notre maître,
Ses douces fureurs,
Dévorent nos cœurs.

Pendant ce chœur, le grand Prêtre de la Gloire, la Prêtresse, les Prêtres et Prêtresses de la Gloire et les Héros rentrent dans le temple, dont les portes se ferment.

Les tigres enchaînés conduisent sur la terre,
Erigone et Bacchus ;
Les victorieux, les vaincus,
Tous les dieux des plaisirs, tous les dieux de la guerre,
Marchent ensemble confondus.

Symphonie, air
On entend le bruit des trompettes, des hautbois et des flûtes, alternativement.

Je vois la tendre volupté
Sur le char sanglant de Bellone,
Je vois l’Amour qui couronne
La valeur et la beauté.

Loure pour l’entrée des Faunes
Bacchus et Érigone paroissent sur un char traîné par des tigres, entouré de Guerriers, de Bacchantes, d’Égipans et de Satyres.

Scène 3

Bacchus, Érigone, une Bacchante, un Guerrier de la suite de Bacchus, Suivans de Bacchus

Air pour les Suivans de Bacchus

Érigone, objet plein de charmes,
Objet de ma brûlante ardeur,
Je n’ai point inventé dans les horreurs des armes
Ce nectar des humains, nécessaire au bonheur,
Pour consoler la terre, et pour sécher ses larmes ;
C’étoit pour enflammer ton cœur.

Bannissons la raison de nos brillantes fêtes.
Non, je ne la connus jamais,
Dans mes plaisirs, dans mes conquêtes ;
Non, je t’adore, et je la hais.

Conservez-la plutôt pour augmenter vos feux,
Bannissez seulement le bruit et le ravage :
Si par vous le monde est heureux,
Je vous aimerai davantage.

Les foibles sentimens offensent mon amour ;
Je veux qu’une éternelle ivresse
De gloire, de grandeur, de plaisirs, de tendresse
Règne sur mes sens tour à tour.

Vous alarmez mon cœur, il tremble de se rendre,
De vos emportemens il est épouvanté :
Il seroit plus transporté,
Si Bacchus étoit plus tendre.

Partagez mes transports divins,
Sur mon char de victoire au sein de la mollesse ;
Rendez le ciel jaloux, enchaînez les humains,
Un Dieu plus fort que moi nous entraîne et nous presse.

Air et chœur
Que le thyrse règne toujours
Dans les plaisirs et dans la guerre,
Qu’il tienne lieu du tonnerre,
Et des flèches des Amours.

Que le thyrse règne toujours
Dans les plaisirs et dans la guerre,
Qu’il tienne lieu du tonnerre,
Et des flèches des Amours.

Quel dieu de mon ame s’empare !
Quel désordre impétueux ?
Il trouble mon cœur, il l’égare.
L’amour seul rendroit plus heureux.

Mais quel est en ces lieux ce temple solitaire !
Estce à nous qu’il est consacré ?
Eston digne ici de me plaire ?
Si Bacchus est connu, Bacchus est adoré.

La Gloire est en ces lieux, le seul dieu qu’on adore,
Elle doit aujourd’hui placer sur ses autels,
Le plus auguste des mortels.
Le vainqueur bienfaisant des peuples de l’aurore,
Aura ces honneurs solennels.

Récitatif, air et récitatif
Un si brillant hommage
Ne se refuse pas.
L’Amour seul me guidoit sur cet heureux rivage ;
Mais on peut détourner ses pas,
Quand la Gloire est sur le passage.

Le ciel doit nous placer parmi les plus grands dieux,
Mais au moins la Gloire en ces lieux
Chez les humains sera ma recompense. 

Si vous n’aimez que moi, qu’est-il besoin de cieux ?

Le temple de la Gloire paroît ouvert.

Le temple s’ouvre,
La Gloire se découvre.
L’objet de mon ardeur y sera couronné ;

Scène 4

Le grand Prêtre de la Gloire, une Prêtresse, Bacchus, Érigone, une Bacchante, un Guerrier, Prêtres et Prêtresses de la Gloire, Suivans de Bacchus

Récitatif et air
Téméraire, arrête !
Ce laurier seroit profane,
S’il avoit couronné ta tête.

Bacchus, qu’on célèbre en tous lieux,
N’a point ici la préférence ;
Il est une vaste distance
Entre les noms connus et les noms glorieux.

Récitatif, air et récitatif
Eh quoi ! des ses présens la Gloire est-elle avare
Pour ses plus brillans favoris ?

J’ai versé des bienfaits sur l’univers soumis ;
Pour qui sont ces lauriers que votre main prepare ?

Pour des vertus d’un plus haut prix.
Contentez-vous, Bacchus, de régner dans vos fêtes,
D’y noyer tous les maux que vos fureurs ont faits ;
Laissez-nous couronner de plus belles conquêtes,
Et de plus grands bienfaits.

BACCHUS aux Prêtres
Peuple vain, peuple fier, enfans de la tristesse,
Vous ne méritez pas des dons si précieux.
Bacchus vous abandonne à la froide sagesse ;
Il ne sauroit vous punir mieux:

Venez, troupe aimable, volez, suivez-moi,
Venez embellir d’autres lieux.
Par la main des Plaisirs, des Amours, et des Jeux,
Versez ce nectar délectable,
Vainqueur des mortels et des dieux :
Venez, troupe aimable, volez, suivez-moi,
Venez embellir d’autres lieux.

Parcourons la terre
Au gré de nos désirs,
Du temple de la guerre
Au temple des Plaisirs.

Forlane pour les Suivans de Bacchus
Gavotte en rondeau pour les Suivans de Bacchus

Chœur avec coryphée
UNE BACCHANTE, avec le chœur

Bacchus, fier et doux vainqueur,
Conduis mes pas, règne en mon cœur,
La Gloire promet le bonheur,
Mais c’est Bacchus qui nous le donne.

Raison, tu n’es qu’une erreur,
Et le chagrin t’environne.
Plaisir, tu n’es point trompeur,
Mon ame à toi s’abandonne.

Bacchus, fier et doux vainqueur, etc.

Entracte. Gavotte en rondeau pour les Suivans de Bacchus (reprise)


The stage depicts the front façade of the Temple of Glory and the avenue leading towards it. The throne that Glory has prepared for he whom she will declare to be the greatest of men is visible further upstage; it is held up by the Virtues and is ascended by means of several steps.

Scene 1

The High Priest of Glory, crowned with laurel, a palm branch in his hand; a Priestess, Priests and Priestesses of Glory; Heroes


Chorus with dancers
Glory, enchantress,
Proud mistress
Of kings and of conquerors;
Frigid old age
And ardent youth
Both seek your favours.

Glory, enchantress, etc.

He who claims to be wise
Thinks that he has escaped
Your noble slavery:
He is mistaken,
He is a despised lover
And his pique is homage to you.

Goddess of heroes, of true wisdom and of kings,
Noble and fertile source
Of virtues and of deeds:
O Glory, here your powerful voice
Must name, having chosen fairly,
The first amongst the world’s masters.

Let all hasten to come here,
Arbiters of peace and bringers of war,
You who calm and you who conquer the earth:
We shall crown the most worthy of you all.

Air for the Heroes and the Priestesses of Glory

Scene 2

The followers of Bacchus arrive, with Bacchantes and Maenads
crowned with ivy and bearing thyrses.

A Warrior in Bacchus’ train, a Bacchante, the High Priest of Glory, a Priestess, Followers of Bacchus, Priests and Priestesses of Glory, Heroes

Entrance of the Followers of Bacchus

Air, chorus with dancers
A WARRIOR, in Bacchus’ train
Bacchus is our invincible leader in all places,
This proud and beneficent hero
Is always kind and fearsome:
Prepare the prize that awaits him.

The god of pleasure will appear:
We proclaim our master.
His sweet fury
Devours our hearts.

During this chorus the High Priest of Glory, the Priestess, the Priests and Priestesses of Glory and the Heroes retire into the temple; its doors close.

Chained tigers transport
Érigone and Bacchus on land;
The victorious and the conquered,
The gods of pleasure and the gods of war,
All march together without distinction.

Symphony, air
Trumpets, oboes, and flutes play in alternation.

I see sweet sensual delight
On Bellona’s blood-drenched chariot;
I see Love, presenting crowns
To valour and beauty.

Loure for the entrance of the Fauns
Bacchus and Érigone appear on a chariot drawn by tigers, surrounded by Warriors, Bacchantes, Aegipans and Satyrs.

Scene 3

Bacchus, Érigone, a Bacchante, a Warrior in Bacchus’ train, followers of Bacchus

Air for the Followers of Bacchus

Érigone, most charming being,
Object of my ardent passion,
I never created the nectar that mortals require for happiness
From the horrors of warfare
To console the earth and to dry its tears.
It was to set your heart aflame with passion.

Let us banish all reason from our splendid festivities.
For I have never known it,
Either in my pleasures or my conquests;
No, I adore you and I detest all reason.


Keep it rather, to increase your passion;
Banish only its noise and devastation.
If the world should become happier through you,
I will love you all the more.

Such weak sentiments offend my love;
I would that eternal intoxications
Of glory, greatness, pleasure and tenderness
Ravish my senses in alternation.

You alarm my heart and it trembles at the thought of surrender,
It is terrified by your passionate transports:
It would be more easily carried away
If Bacchus were more gentle.

Share my divine transports of emotion
On my triumphal chariot, in the heart of sweet softness;
Make heaven jealous and put all mortals under your spell.
A god stronger than I has us in hand and urges us onwards.

Air and chorus
May the thyrsis reign always
In pleasure and in war;
May it be a fit replacement for thunder
And the arrows of the Cupids.

May the thyrsis reign always
In pleasure and in war;
May it be a fit replacement for thunder
And the arrows of the Cupids.

What god now seizes hold of my soul,
What impetuous chaos?
He disturbs my heart and leads it astray.
Love alone can make it more happy.

But whose temple is this, standing here alone?
Is it consecrated to us?
Are those here worthy of pleasing me?
If Bacchus is known, Bacchus is worshipped.

Glory is the only goddess worshipped in that place,
Above her altars she will soon place
The most august of mortals.
The beneficent conqueror of the Eastern peoples
Will be granted these solemn honours.

Recitative, air and recitative
Such splendid homage
May not be refused.
Love alone has guided me on this blessed shore,
But one can lose the true path
When Glory becomes involved.

Heaven may place us amongst the greatest of the gods,
But at least Glory amongst mortals
Will be my reward in these regions.

If you love only me, what need have you of heaven?

The temple of Glory opens.

The temple opens,
And Glory is revealed.
The object of my passion shall be crowned there;
Follow me.


The High Priest of Glory, a Priestess, Bacchus, Érigone, a Bacchante, a Warrior, Priests and Priestesses of Glory, followers of Bacchus

Recitative and air
Rash and foolish one, stop,
This laurel wreath would be profaned
If it were used to crown your head.

Bacchus, who is worshipped everywhere,
Cannot be favoured here;
There is a vast distance between
Names that are familiar and names that are glorious.

Recitative, air and recitative
So then! Is Glory then so miserly with her gifts
To the most splendid of her favourites?

I have rained beneficence onto this obedient world;
For whom are you preparing these laurel wreaths?

For those who have paid a higher price for their virtue.
Be content, Bacchus, to reign over your feasts,
And drown all the evils caused by your passions in them;
Let us now crown finer conquests
And greater beneficence.

BACCHUS (to the Priests)
Vain and proud people, children of sadness,
You do not deserve such precious gifts.
Bacchus abandons you now to your cold good sense;
He can think of no more fitting punishment.

Fly, then, follow me, my kind friends,
Come, for we shall lend splendour to other places.
Let the hands of Pleasure, Love and Sport
Pour out that delightful nectar
That conquers both mortals and gods:
Fly, then, follow me, my kind friends,
Come, for we shall lend splendour to other places.

Let us travel through the world
As our fancy takes us,
From the temple of war
To the temple of Pleasure.

Forlane for the Followers of Bacchus
Gavotte en rondeau for the Followers of Bacchus

Chorus with dancers
A BACCHANTE, and the Chorus
Bacchus, proud and sweet conqueror,
Guide my steps, reign in my heart.
Glory may promise happiness,
But it is Bacchus that grants it.

Reason, you are mistaken,
And grief surrounds you.
Pleasure, you cannot deceive,
My soul abandons itself to you.

Bacchus, proud and sweet conqueror, etc.

Entr’acte. Gavotte en rondeau for the Followers of Bacchus (reprise)


Scène 1

Plautine, Junie, Fannie

Le théâtre représente la ville d’Artaxate à demi-ruinée, au milieu de laquelle est une place publique ornée d’arcs de triomphe, chargés de trophées.

Reviens, divin Trajan, vainqueur doux et terrible,
Le monde est mon rival, tous les cœurs sont à toi ;
Mais, est-il un cœur plus sensible,
Et qui t’adore plus que moi ?
Est-il un cœur plus tendre, plus sensible,

Et qui t’adore plus que moi ?
Les Parthes sont tombés sous ta main foudroyante,
Tu punis, tu venges les rois,
Rome est heureuse et triomphante,
Tes bienfaits passent tes exploits.

Dans ce climat barbare, au sein de l’Arménie,
Pouvez-vous affronter les horreurs des combats ?

Nous étions protégés par son puissant génie,
Et l’Amour conduisoit mes pas.

L’Europe reverra son vengeur et son maître,
Sous ces arcs triomphaux, on dit qu’il va paroître.

Ils sont élevés par mes mains.
Quel doux plaisir succède à ma douleur profonde !
Nous allons contempler dans le maître du monde,
Le plus aimable des humains.

Nos soldats triomphans, enrichis, pleins de gloire,
Font voler son nom jusqu’aux cieux.

Il se dérobe à leurs chants de victoire,
Seul, sans pompe, et sans suite, il vient orner ces lieux.

Il faut à des héros vulgaires
La pompe et l’éclat des honneurs.
Ces vains appuis sont nécessaires
Pour les vaines grandeurs.
Trajan seul est suivi de sa gloire immortelle ;
On croit voir près de lui l’univers à genoux,
Et c’est pour moi qu’il vient ! Ce héros m’est fidèlle !
Grands dieux, vous habitez dans cette ame si belle,
Et je la partage avec vous !

Scène 2

Trajan, Plautine, Junie, Fannie

Récitatif, duo, récitatif
PLAUTINE, courant au-devant de Trajan
Enfin, je vous revois, le charme de ma vie
M’est rendu pour jamais.

Le ciel me vend cher ses bienfaits,
Ma félicité m’est ravie.
Je reviens un moment pour m’arracher à vous,
Pour m’animer d’une vertu nouvelle,
Pour mériter, quand mon devoir m’appelle,
D’être empereur de Rome et d’être votre époux.

Que dites-vous ? quel mot funeste !
Un moment ! vous, ô ciel ! un seul moment me reste,
Quand mes jours dépendoient de vous revoir toujours.

Le ciel en tous les temps m’accorda son secours ;
Il me rendra bientôt aux charmes que j’adore :
C’est pour vous qu’il fait mon Cœur,
Je vous ai vue, et je serai vainqueur.

Quoi, ne l’êtes-vous pas ? Quoi, seroit-il encore
Un roi que votre main n’auroit pas désarmé ?
Tout n’est-il pas soumis, du couchant à l’aurore ?
L’univers n’est-il pas calmé?

On me trahit…

Non, je ne puis vous croire,
On ne peut vous manquer de foi.

Des Parthes terrassés l’inexorable roi
S’irrite de sa chute, et brave ma victoire,
Cinq rois qu’il a séduits sont armés contre moi ;
Ils ont joint l’artifice aux excès de la rage,
Ils sont au pieds de ces remparts ;
Mais j’ai pour moi les Dieux, les Romains, mon courage,
Et mon amour, et vos regards.

Mes regards vous suivront ; je veux que sur ma tête,
Le ciel épuise son courroux ;
Je ne suivrai partout, je braverai leurs coups,
J’écarterai la mort qu’on vous apprête,
Je mourrai du moins près de vous.

Ah ! ne m’accablez point, mon cœur est trop sensible ;
Ah ! laissez-moi vous mériter ;
Vous m’aimez, il suffit, rien ne m’est impossible,
Rien ne pourra me resister.

Cruel, pouvez-vous m’arrêter ?
Entendez-vous les cris d’un ennemi perfide ?

J’entens la voix de l’honneur qui me guide,
Je vole ; demeurez ; la victoire me suit.
Je vole, attendez tout de mon peuple intrépide,
Et de l’Amour qui me conduit.

Duo, récitatif
Je vais/Allez punir un barbare,
Terrasser sous mes/vos coups
L’ennemi qui nous sépare,
Qui m’arrache un moment à vous.

Il m’abandonne à ma douleur mortelle !
Cher amant, arrêtez ; ah ! détournez les yeux,
Voyez encor les miens.

TRAJAN, au fond du théâtre
O dieux ! O justes dieux !
Veillez sur l’empire, et sur elle.

Scène 3

Il est déjà loin de ces lieux,
Devoir, es-tu content ? Je meurs, et je l’admire.
Ministres du Dieu des combats,
Prêtresses de Vénus, qui protégez l’empire,
Percez le ciel de cris, accompagnez mes pas,
Secondez l’amour qui m’inspire.

Scène 4

Fier Dieu des alarmes,
Protège nos armes,
Conduis nos étendars.

Déesse des Grâces,
Vole sur ses traces,
Enchaîne le Dieu Mars.

Air pour les Prêtres de Mars et Prêtresses de Vénus

Dieux puissans, protégez votre vivante image,
Vous étiez autrefois des mortels comme lui,
C’est pour avoir régné comme il règne aujourd’hui
Que le ciel est votre partage.

Première et deuxième gavottes pour les Prêtres de Mars et Prêtresses de Vénus
On entend un chœur de Romains qui avancent ensuite sur le théâtre.

Chœur, récitatif
Charmant héros, qui pourra croire
Des exploits si prompts et si grands ?
Tu te fais en peu de temps,
La plus durable mémoire.

Entendez-vous ces cris et ces chants de victoire ?

Trajan revient vainqueur.

En pouviez-vous douter ?

Je vois les Rois captifs, ornemens de sa gloire,
Avant de les punir, il vient les présenter.

Scène 5

Trajan, entouré des aigles romaines et de faisceaux ; les Rois vaincus sont enchaînés à sa suite, Plautine, Junie, Fannie, Romains et Romaines

Récitatif accompagné
Rois, qui redoutez ma vengeance,
Qui craignez les affronts aux vaincus destinés,
Soyez désormais enchaînés
Par la seule reconnaissance ;
Plautine est en ces lieux, il faut qu’en sa presence,
Il ne soit point d’infortunés.

Chœur avec coryphées
LES ROIS, se relevant, chantent avec le chœur
Ô grandeur ! ô clémence !
Vainqueur égal aux Dieux,
Vous avez leur puissance,
Vous pardonnez comme eux.

Vos vertus ont passé mon espérance même,
Mon cœur est plus touché que celui des Rois.

Ah, s’il est des vertus dans ce cœur qui vous aime,
Vous savez à qui je les dois !
J’ai voulu des humains mériter le suffrage,
Dompter les rois, briser leurs fers,
Et ne vous offrir mon hommage,
Qu’avec les vœux de l’univers.
Ciel ! qu’est-ce que je vois ?

La Gloire descend d’un vol précipité, une couronne de Laurier à la main.

Scène 6

La Gloire, Trajan, Plautine, Junie, Fannie, les Rois vaincus, Romains et Romaines

Récitatif et air
Tu vois ta récompense,
Le prix de tes exploits, surtout de ta clémence ;
Mon trône est à tes pieds, tu règnes avec moi.

Le théâtre change et représente le temple de la Gloire.

Plus d’un héros, plus d’un grand roi,
Jaloux en vain de sa mémoire,
Vola toujours après la Gloire,
Et la Gloire vole après toi.

Entrée des Suivants de la Gloire
Les Suivans de la Gloire, mêlés aux Romains et aux Romaines, forment de danses.

Chœur avec coryphée
Le ciel nous seconde,
Célébrons son choix :
Exemple des rois,
Délices du monde,
Vivons sous tes lois.

Tendre Vénus, à qui Rome est soumise,
À nos exploits joins tes tendres appas ;
Ordonne à Mars enchanté dans tes bras,
Que pour Trajan sa faveur s’éternise.

Gigue pour les Suivants de la Gloire

Récitatif, air, récitatif
Des honneurs si brillans, sont trop pour mon partage,
Dieux dont j’éprouve la faveur,
Dieux de mon peuple, achevez votre ouvrage,
Changez ce temple auguste en celui du Bonheur.

Qu’il serve à jamais aux fêtes
Des fortunés humains :
Qu’il dure autant que les conquêtes,
Et que la gloire des Romains.

Les dieux ne refusent rien
Au héros qui leur ressemble :
Volez, Plaisirs que sa vertu rassemble ;
Le temple du Bonheur sera toujours le mien.

Le théâtre change et représente le temple du Bonheur : il est formé de pavillons d’une architecture légère, de péristyles, de jardins, de fontaines, etc. Ce lieu délicieux est rempli de Romains et de Romaines de tous états.

Scène dernière. Le temple du Bonheur

Une dame Romaine, une Bergère, un Romain, Trajan, La Gloire, Les Rois vaincus, Plautine, Junie, Fannie, Romains et Romaines

Chantons dans ce jour solennel,
Et que la terre nous réponde :
Un mortel, un seul mortel
Fait le bonheur du monde.

Entrée des Seigneurs romains et des Dames romaines [premier quadrille] – Passacaille

Chœur avec coryphée
Tout rang, tout sexe, tout âge,
Doit aspirer au bonheur.

Tout rang, tout sexe, tout âge,
Doit aspirer au bonheur.

Le printemps volage,
L’été plein d’ardeur,
L’automne plus sage,
Raison, badinage,
Retraite, grandeur,
Tout rang, tout sexe, tout âge,
Doit aspirer au bonheur.

Tout rang, etc.

Entrée de Bergers et Bergères [deuxième quadrille]

Ici les plus brillantes fleurs
N’effacent point les violettes ;
Les étendards et les houlettes
Sont ornés des mêmes couleurs.
Les chants de nos tendres pasteurs
Se mêlent au bruit des trompettes ;
L’Amour anime en ces retraites
Tous les regards et tous les cœurs.

Loure grave pour une entrée brillante [troisième quadrille]

Air pour les Romains et Romaines
Les Seigneurs et les Dames romaines se joignent en dansant, aux Bergers et aux Bergères.

Chœur avec coryphée
Dans un jour si beau,
Il n’est point d’alarmes ;
Mars est sans armes,
L’Amour sans bandeau.

Dans un jour si beau, etc.

La Gloire et les Amours en ces lieux n’ont des ailes
Que pour voler dans nos bras.
La Gloire aux ennemis présentoit nos soldats,
Et l’Amour les présente aux belles.

Dans un jour si beau, etc.

Entrée de la jeunesse [quatrième quadrille] – Premier et deuxième passepieds
Trajan paroît avec Plautine, et tous les Romains se rangent autour de lui.


Toi que la victoire
Couronne en ce jour,
Ta plus belle gloire
Vient du tendre Amour.

Récitatif et air
O peuples de héros qui m’aimez et que j’aime,
Vous faites mes grandeurs ;
Je veux régner sur vos cœurs,

Montrant Plautine.

Sur tant d’appas, sur moi-même ;
Montez au ciel, encens que je reçois,
Retournez vers les dieux, hommages que j’attire :
Dieux puissans, protégez ce formidable empire,
Inspirez toujours tous ses rois.

Suite de la Passacaille
Air pour les Romains et Romaines

Toutes les différentes troupes recommencent leurs danses autour de Trajan et de Plautine, et terminent la fête par un ballet général.



Scene 1

Plautine, Junie, Fannie

The city of Artaxaba, half in ruins; in its centre a public square with triumphal arches laden with trophies.

Return, o Trajan, sweet yet terrifying conqueror,
The world is my rival, for every heart is yours;
But was there ever a more sensitive heart than mine,
Or one who worships you more than I?
Was there ever a more tender, more sensitive heart than mine,

Or one who worships you more than I?
The Parthians have fallen under your death-dealing hand,
You punish and are revenged on their kings,
Rome is happy and triumphant,|
Your benefactions outnumber your battles.

In this barbarous land, in the heart of Armenia,
how can you live with the horrors of battle?

We were protected by his powerful spirit,
And love guided my steps.

Europe will once again behold its avenger and its master:
They say he will appear under these triumphal arches.

They have been raised by my own hands.
What sweet delight now follows my deep sorrow!
In this master of the world, we shall also behold
The kindliest of mortal men.

Our triumphant soldiers, made rich and filled with glory,
Have raised his name to the heights of heaven.

He refuses to hear their acclamations of victory,
Alone and without ceremony he comes to add splendour to this place.

Common heroes require
Pomp and glistening honours;
Only vain greatness has need of
Such vain accessories.
Trajan alone is accompanied by his immortal glory,
It is as if the world were on its knees before him,
And it is to me that he comes! This hero is true to me!
Great gods, you dwell in that fine soul,
And I share him with you!

Scene 2

Trajan, Plautine, Junie, Fannie

Recitative, duet, recitative
PLAUTINE, running towards Trajan
At last I behold you again:
The charm of my life returns to me for ever.

Heaven’s gifts are only given at a price,
My happiness has been taken from me.
I have returned, and in a moment I must tear myself away
And inspire myself with new strength
So that I may deserve, when my duty calls,
To be emperor of Rome — and your husband.

What have I heard? What fatal words are these?
You, one moment! O Heaven! Only one moment is left me,
when my entire life has hung on seeing you again.

Heaven will always and ever grant me its aid;
It will soon return me to the charms that I adore.
My heart does this for you;
I have seen you, and I shall conquer.

What, have you not already done so? Is there still
Another king whom you have not yet subjugated?
From East to West, do not all bend the knee to you?
Is the world not yet quiet?

I am betrayed.

No, I cannot believe you,
Such lack of faith in you cannot be.

The inexorable king of the defeated Parthians
Chafes at his fall and challenges my victory;
Five kings that he has swayed have taken up arms against me.
They have added trickery to their overweening wrath
And are now at the feet of these very ramparts.
The gods, the Romans and my courage are on my side,
As is my love and your devotion.

My devotion follows you; may Heaven
Vent its wrath on my head alone.
I will follow you wherever you may go and will brave their blows;
I myself will take away the death that they prepare for you
And at the least I will die close to you.

Ah, do not burden me so, for my heart is too full;
Ah, let me deserve you wholly.
You love me, and this is enough; nothing is impossible for me,
None will be able to stand against me.

Cruel man, how can you stop me?
Do you hear the shouts of that perfidious enemy?

I hear the voice of duty guiding me.
I must go; remain, for victory follows me.
I must go; expect everything from my intrepid people
And from the love that guides my path.

Duet, recitative
I go / Go to punish a barbarian
Who will fall beneath my / your blows;
The enemy that separates us
Seizes you from me for a moment.

He leaves me in mortal despair!
Beloved, stop; look back towards me
And gaze into my eyes once more.

TRAJAN, at the back of the stage
O gods, o just gods!
Watch over the empire, and watch over her.

Scene 3

He is already far from here –
Duty, are you pleased? I die, and I admire him.
Ministers of the God of battles,
Priestesses of Venus, who protect the Empire,
Rend the heavens with your cries, follow me now,
And support this love that inspires me.

Scene 4

Proud God of battle,
Protect our weapons,
Guide our standard-bearers.

Goddess of the Graces,
Fly, follow his tracks,
Join with the God Mars.

Air for the Priests of Mars and Priestesses of Venus

Powerful Gods, protect your living image,
You were once as mortal as he;
It is because you reigned then as he does today
That you now rule in heaven.

First and second gavottes for the Priests of Mars and Priestesses of Venus
A chorus of Romans is heard in the distance who then appear onstage.

Chorus, recitative
O wondrous hero, who could believe in
Such swift and great exploits?
In such a short time you have ensured
Yourself the most lasting of memories.

Do you hear these shouts and songs of victory?

Trajan returns as conqueror.

How could you have doubted it?

I see the captive kings, ornaments of his glory,
He comes to display them before punishing them.

Scene 5

Trajan appears, surrounded by Roman eagles and fasces; the conquered kings are chained to his escort. Plautine, Junie, Roman men and women

Accompanied recitative
Kings, you who dread my vengeance,
You who fear the insults meted out to the conquered,
You are bound only to accept
One simple statement:
Plautine is here; in her presence
No wretchedness or misfortune may exist.

Chorus with dancers
THE KINGS rise and sing with the Chorus
O greatness! O clemency!
A conqueror who is the Gods’ equal.
You possess their power
And you forgive as do they.

Your virtues go far beyond what I could hope,
My heart is moved even more than these kings.

Ah, if there be any virtue in this heart that loves you so,
You know to whom I owe it!
I have sought to deserve the approval of mortals,
To subdue kings and to break their chains,
So that I might offer you my homage
Together with the vows of the entire world.
O Heaven! What do I see?

Glory descends swiftly from the skies, a laurel wreath in her hand.

Scene 6

Glory, Trajan, Plautine, Junie, Fannie, The conquered kings, Roman men and women

Recitative and air
Behold now your reward,
the prize for your deeds, and especially for your clemency;
My throne is at your feet, for you shall reign with me.

The stage is transformed into the Temple of Glory.

More than one hero, more than one great king,
Proud of his reputation,
Has pursued Glory in vain;
It is you that Glory now pursues.

Entrance of the Followers of Glory
The followers of Glory mingle with the Roman men and women and dance.

Chorus with dancers
Heaven is in agreement,
Let us celebrate its choice:
A paragon of kings
And of the pleasures of the world,
We will live according to your laws.

Tender Venus, to whom Rome submits,
Associate your tender charms with our deeds;
Order Mars, as he lies bewitched in your arms,
To grant his lifelong favour to Trajan.

Gigue for the Followers of Glory

Recitative, air, recitative
Such splendid honours are too great for me to share.
Gods, whose favour I enjoy,
Gods of my people, finish now your work:
Transform this august temple into one of happiness.

May it ever be used for celebrations
Given by fortunate mortals;
May it last as long as the conquests
And the glory of the Roman people.

The Gods can refuse nothing
To the hero who is their very image:
Fly forth, Pleasures that his virtue has summoned here;
The temple of Happiness will always be mine.

The scene is transformed into the temple of Happiness; we see lightly-constructed pavilions, peristyles, gardens, fountains, etc. This delightful place is filled with Roman men and women of every class.

Final scene. The temple of Happiness

A Roman woman, a shepherdess, a Roman man, Glory, Trajan, the conquered kings, Plautine, Junie, Fannie, Roman men and women

Let us sing on this solemn day,
And may the earth give echo:
A mortal, one mortal alone,
Has created happiness for the world.

Entrance of the Roman Lords and Roman Ladies [first quadrille] – Passacaille

Chorus with dancers
People of every class, sex and age
Should aspire to happiness.

People of every class, sex and age
Should aspire to happiness.

Fleeting spring,
Passionate summer,
Wiser autumn,
Reason, playfulness,
Quietness, greatness,
People of every class, sex and age
Should aspire to happiness.

People of every class, sex and age etc.

Entrance of Shepherds and Shepherdesses [second quadrille]

Here the most brilliant flowers
Do not outshine the violets;
Military standards and shepherds’ staves
Are decorated with the same colours.
The songs of our sweet shepherds
Are blended with the sound of trumpets;
Here in these quiet retreats
Love enlivens every glance and heart.

Loure grave for a brilliant entry [third quadrille]

Air for the Roman men and women
Roman men and women join the shepherds and shepherdesses in the dance.

Chorus with dancers
There is no alarm or upset
On a day so fine:
Mars is without his weapons
And Cupid without his blindfold.

There is no alarm or upset, etc.

Glory and the Cupids here use their wings
Simply to fly into our arms.
Glory introduced our soldiers to the enemy,
Whilst Cupid introduced them to fair women.

There is no alarm or upset, etc.

Entrance of the youth [fourth quadrille] – First and second passepieds
Trajan appears with Plautine; all the Romans gather round him.

You, whom Victory
Crowns this day,
Your finest glory
Comes from sweet Love.

Recitative and air
O ye of heroic descent, who love me and are loved in return,
You are the source of my greatness;
I wish to reign over your hearts,

Indicates Plautine.

Over such charms, and over myself.
Let the incense burnt for me ascend to heaven;
May the homage paid to me be returned to the gods.
Mighty gods, protect this great Empire,
Inspire its kings forever.

Suite of the Passacaille

Air for the Roman men and women
All resume their dances around Trajan and Plautine; the festivities end with dances in which all are involved.


About the Artists

Nicholas McGegan


Marc Labonnette


Camille Ortiz


Philippe-Nicolas Martin


Gabrielle Philiponet


Chantal Santon-Jeffery


Artavazd Sargsyan


Aaron Sheehan


Tonia d'Amelio


Brynt Beitman


Caroline Copeland


Carly Fox


Olsi Gjeci


Alexis Silver


Meggi Sweeney Smith


Matthew Ting


Alexis Silver


Catherine Turocy

stage director & choreographer

Scott Blake

set design

Marie Anne Chiment

costume design

Pierre Dupouey

lighting design

The Players and The Chorale

Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

Philharmonia’s musicians perform on historically accurate instruments.  Below each player’s name is information about his or her instrument’s maker and origin.


Elizabeth Blumenstock, concertmaster
Andrea Guarneri, Cremona, 1660; on loan from Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra Period Instrument Trust
Egon & Joan von Kaschnitz Concertmaster Chair

Jolianne von Einem 
Rowland Ross, Guildford, England, 1979; after A. Stradivari

Lisa Grodin 
Paulo Antonio Testore, Contrada, Larga di Milano, Italy, 1736

Katherine Kyme
Carlo Antonio Testore, Milan, Italy, 1720

Tyler Lewis
Anonymous, Italy, c. 1800

Carla Moore
Johann Georg Thir, Vienna, Austria, 1754

Maxine Nemerovski
David Tecchler, Rome, Italy, 1733

Linda Quan
Jacob Stainer, Absam, Tyrol, 1655

Sandra Schwarz
Anonymous, School of Cremona, 1745

Noah Strick
Celia Bridges, Cologne, Germany, 1988

Lisa Weiss
Anonymous; after Testore

Alicia Yang
Robert Brewer Young, 2011


David Daniel Bowes
Richard Duke, London, England, c. 1780

Maria Ionia Caswell
Anonymous, Mittenwald, Germany, c. 1800

Anthony Martin *
Aegidius Kloz, Mittenwald, Germany, 1790

Ellie Nishi
Anonymous, Germany, 18th Century


Phoebe Carrai bc
Anonymous, Italy, c. 1690

Paul Hale
Dominik Zuchowicz, Ottawa, Canada, 1997; after Montagnana
Zheng Cao Memorial Cello Chair

Robert Howard
Anonymous, Venice, Italy, 1750

Farley Pearce
Antonio Garcias Rosius, Mendocino, California, 1988; after A. Stradivari

William Skeen
Anonymous, Northern Italy, ca. 1680
Osher Cello Chair Endowment

Tanya Tomkins
Lockley Hill, London, England, 1798


Anthony Manzo
Tom Wolf, 2007; after Carlo Ferdinando Landolfi, Tanegia, 1766

Kristin Zoernig bc
Joseph Wrent, Rotterdam, Holland, 1648


Stephen Schultz *
Martin Wenner, Singen, Germany, 2012; after Carlo Palanca, Turin, Italy, c. 1750

Janet See
Martin Wenner, Singen, Germany, 2012; after Carlo Palanca, Turin, Italy, c. 1740 

Mindy Rosenfeld
Martin Wenner, Singen, Germany, 2010; after Carlo Palanca, Turin, Italy, c. 1750


Janet See
Roderick Cameron, Mendocino, California, 1995; after original models

Mindy Rosenfeld
Roderick Cameron, Mendocino, California, 2007; after Robert Claire copy of G. A. Rottenburgh, Brussels, Belgium, c. 1740 


Marc Schachman *
A. Vas Dias, Decatur, Georgia, 2001; after T. Stanesby, England, c. 1710
Principal Oboe Chair In Memory of Clare Frieman Kivelson and Irene Valente Angstadt

Gonzalo Ruiz
Joel Robinson, New York, 1990; after Saxon models, c. 1720

David Dickey
Randy Cook, Basel, Switzerland, 2008; after Jonathan Bradbury, London, England, c. 1720


Danny Bond *
Peter de Koningh, Hall, Holland, 1978; after Prudent, Paris, France, c. 1760

Andrew Schwartz
Guntram Wolf, Kronach, Germany, 2008

Katherine van Orden
Peter de Kiningh, Hall, Holland, 1978, after Prudent, Paris, France, c. 1760


R. J. Kelley *
Richard Seraphinoff, Bloomington, Indiana, 2006; after J. C. Hofmaster, London, England, c. 1740

Paul Avril
Richard Seraphinoff, Bloomington, Indiana, 1997; after J. W. Haas, Nürnberg, c. 1720


John Thiessen *
Rainer Egger, Basel, Switzerland, 2003; after J. L. Ehe, Nuremburg, Germany, 1746 

Fred Holmgren
Fred Holmgren, Massachusetts, 2005; after J. L. Ehe, Nuremburg, Germany, 1746


Allen Biggs *
Pete Woods, Aldershot, England, 1996; after 18th century continental, hand tuned


Chris Layer


Jory Vinikour bc

John Phillips, Berkeley, California, 1990; after Albert Delin, Tournai, Belgium, 1768
[Generously lent by Nicholas McGegan] 

Hanneke van Proosdij bc
John Phillips, Berkeley, California, 1986; after Delin 

* principal
† principal 2nd
bc basso continuo



Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra Community Fund for Choral Music

Bruce Lamott, director
Robert & Laura Cory Chorale Director Chair

Angela Arnold
Jennifer Ashworth
Tonia d’Amelio
Barbara Rowland
Helene Zindarsian
Angelique Zuluaga

Natasha Hoehn
Katherine McKee
Laurel Cameron Porter
Casie Walker
Heidi Waterman
Celeste Winant

Kevin Gibbs
Corey Head
Jimmy Kansau
David Kurtenbach
Mark Mueller
Jonathan Smucker

Paul Boyce
Jeffrey Fields
James Monios
Sepp Hammer
Tom Hart
Chad Runyon

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