Why Opera Comique

Why Call PATRA an Opera Comique?

The definition of opera comique is varied but generally ... Opera Comique is a style of opera that originated in France.  The early opera comique had spoken dialogue interspersed with songs, and was mainly comic, the later ones (those written around the late 19th century) usually had continuous music, and was not necessarily humorous (for example, Bizet's Carmen)

I am calling PATRA an opera comique for several reasons:

  • It has a small amount of spoken dialogue.
  • The numbers contain some pieces with distinct endings and some that segue continuously into the next number.
  • The numbers generally have a definite song form rather than a stream of consciousness progression.
  • The recitatives generally set up the numbers.
  • While tragedy happens within PATRA, the overall tone is comedic and romantic...
  • And though the story is historically based with the effects of the decisions made by the characters epic, PATRA is an intimately personal story.

Some Famous Examples

  • Carmen ....................................  Bizet
  • Manon, Cendrillon Sappho .....   Massenet
  • La fille du regiment, Rita.........   Donizetti
  • Lakme   ...................................   Delibes
  • The Tales of Hoffman.............    Offenbach
  • La Princess Jaune ...................    Saint-Saens
  • Mignon ..................................    Thomas
  • Le domino noir ........................  Auber
  • Louise..................................       Charpentier
  • Dinorah ..................................    Meyerbeer
  • Pelleas and Melisande ...........    Debussy