Classical Ballet Coppelia - L. Delibes (Ballet in two acts)|
Moscow theatre "New Opera"
Schedule for Coppelia - L. Delibes (Ballet in two acts) 2013
Composer: Leo Delibes
Stage Director: Natalia Kasatkina and Vladimir Vasilev
Choreography: Natalia Kasatkina and Vladimir Vasilev
Orchestra: Symphony Orchestra of the "New Opera" Theatre
Ballet in two acts
The Kasatkina and Vasilyov State Academic Classical Ballet Theatre (Moscow Classical Ballet)
Libretto by Arthur Saint-Leon, Charles Nuitter
based on the story by E. T. A. Hoffmann The Sandman,
adapted by Natalia Kasatkina, Vladimir Vasilyov
Stage Directors - Natalia Kasatkina, Vladimir Vasilyov
Choreographers - Arthur Saint-Leon, Enrico Cecchetti, Marius Petipa,
Natalia Kasatkina, Vladimir Vasilyov
Set and Costume Designer - Elizaveta Dvorkina
Novaya Opera Orchestra
Music Director and Conductor - Valery Kritskov
A public Square in a small town, on the borders of
Galicia, with wooden houses painted with bright colors. One house stands out in
contrast to the others, with grating before the windows and the door securely
fastened. This is the residence of Coppelius.
Swanilda is approaching the
house of Coppelius, raises her eyes to a large window, behind which Coppelia,
the daughter of old Coppelius, is seen, sitting with a book in her hands
apparently absorbed in her reading. Every morning she is seen at the same window
and in the same attitude, and then disappears. She never goes out from this
mysterious residence. She appears to be pretty, and many young men in the town
have passed long hours beneath her window, beseeching for one
Swanilda suspects that her fiance, Frantz, is not indifferent to
the beauty of Coppelia. She tries to attract her attention, but Coppelia has her
eyes always fixed on her book, of which she does not even turn the
Swanilda cannot contain her feelings of anger. She starts to
knock at the door, but she perceives Frantz approaching, and remains in hiding
to see what he is going to do.
Frantz, who at first was going toward
Swanilda house, suddenly stops. Coppelia is at the window. He bows to her. At
the same time she turns her head and appears to return Frantz's salute. Frantz
has scarcely time to throw a kiss to Coppelia before old Coppelius has opened
his window, and seems to be amused at what has been going on.
furious against Coppelius and against Frantz. However, she remains quiet and
pretends to have seen nothing. She runs after a butterfly. Frantz runs with her,
and catching it, pins it in the collar of his coat. Swanilda reproaches him for
his cruelty: "What has this poor insect done to you?" After many reproaches, the
young maid brings herself to tell him, that she knows all. He has deceived her.
He loves Coppelia. Frantz tries in vain to defend himself.
Burgomaster announces that on the next day a grand fete will take place - the
Lord of the manor has given a bell to the Town. They crowd round the
Burgomaster. The noise is being made in Coppelius' house. Odd looking lights are
shining at the windows. Some of the girls shrink with fear from this mysterious
abode. But it is nothing but the clash of the hammer on the anvil, and the light
is the reflection from the forge. Coppelius is an old fool who is always
working. At what? No one knows and who cares? He must be left alone and not be
stopped from amusing himself. The Burgomaster approaches Swanilda. He tells her
that tomorrow the lord of the manor will give a dowry and marriage to several
couples. She is betrothed to Frantz; shall they not be united to-morrow? Ah! but
there is time yet, and the young girl looking spitefully at Frantz, tells the
Burgomaster that she will tell him a story. It is the story of a straw which
reveals all secrets.
Swanilda takes the straw from a bundle, and placing
it to her ear, pretends to listen; then she tells Frantz to listen also. Does it
not tell him that he does not love Swanilda? Frantz answers that he hears
nothing. Swanilda tries it with one of Frantz's friends, who pretends to hear
very distinctly what the straw says. Frantz tries to protest, but Swanilda
breaking the straw before his eyes, tells him that everything is broken between
them. Frantz goes away, while Swanilda dances in the midst of her companions.
Glasses are placed on the tables, and they drink the health of the lord of the
manor and the Burgomaster.
Coppelius leaves his house and securely
fastens the door. He has not gone many steps, before he is surrounded by a crowd
of young fellows; some of whom want to take him away with them, while the others
want to make him dance. The old man goes off swearing.
bidding adieu to her friends, when one of them sees a key, which Coppelius must
The girls suggest to Swanilda to visit the mysterious house. At
first Swanilda hesitates, but she wants to meet this rival. "Well, then, let us
enter, " she says. The girls enter the house of Coppelius.
Frantz is seen
coming up, carrying a ladder. He has determined to see what chance he has with
Coppélia. The opportunity is most favorable and Coppelius is far off! But it is
not so, for just as Frantz is steadying the ladder against the balcony, he sees
Coppelius returning and looking for the lost key. He sees Frantz just about to
climb the ladder. Frantz runs away.
large room is full of all kinds of instruments and tools. There are several
automata on pedestals. There are figures of an old man, dressed in Persian
costume, a Negro in threatening attitude, a little Moorish cymbal-player, a
Chinaman with a tympanon before him.
The girls cautiously enter
Coppelius' house. Who are those people standing still in the dark shadows? They
are face to face with the strange figures which a moment before had so
frightened them. Swanilda draws aside the heavy curtains. There she sees
Coppelia seated with her book in her hand. Swanilda salutes the strange girl who
remains motionless. She speaks to her, but gets no answer. She touches the young
girl's arm and then starts back through fear. Can it be a living creature? She
puts her hand to the heart, but it does not beat. This young lady is an
automaton, and the handy-work of Coppelius! Swanilda doesn't worry herself any
more about her rival, but looks forward to the fun of telling Frantz all about
her discovery. The girls run laughing, around the studio. They have nothing to
One of them in passing by the Tympanon player, touches it by
accident. It begins playing a tune. The girls are at first bewildered, but soon
begin dancing. They then find the spring, which sets the little Moorish figure
Suddenly Coppelius returns in a furious rage. He draws
together the curtains which conceal Coppelia; stops the automata and runs after
the girls. They slip through his hands and disappear down the back stairs.
Swanilda is hiding behind the curtains. She is caught! but no; crouching in a
corner she remains unseen when Coppelius looks behind the curtain. He examines
Coppelia and finds that no harm has been done. He breathes more
But what is that noise? He sees the top of a ladder in the window
and then Frantz appears. Coppelius does not show himself. Frantz is going toward
the spot where he has seen Coppelia, when two stout hands seize him. Frantz
nearly dead with fright, implores Coppelius to forgive him. He tries to escape,
but the old man holds him tightly. "What are you up to here?" he asks. Frantz
confesses that he is in love. "I am not so bad as people say. Sit down and let
us take a drink together and have a chat, " answers Coppelius. He gets an old
flagon of wine and two goblets. He takes a sip with Frantz, and then, when
Frantz is not looking, he throws away the wine.
Frantz finds that the
wine has a peculiar taste. He tosses it down, however, and Coppelius makes him
drink more and more. Frantz tries to get near the window where he has seen
Coppelia. But his legs give way, he falls heavily on the bench and is
Coppelius gets a magic book and studies its pages. Then he rolls
the pedestal which holds Coppelia, bringing it nearer to sleeping Frantz.
Placing his hands over the heart and forehead of the young man, he tries to take
away his soul to give life to the young girl. Coppelia rises up, she begins her
mechanical motions but then she descends the first step of the pedestal and then
the second. She walks! She lives!
Coppelius is almost beside himself with
joy. His work has surpassed all that human hand has ever created! She soon
begins to dance slowly, and than all at once darts off so quickly that Coppelius
can scarcely follow her. She smiles; a color comes to her cheeks and she is full
She sees the vial and places it to her lips. Coppelius is just
in time to snatch the flagon from her hands. She perceives the magic book and
asks Coppelius what it means. "There are impenetrable secrets, " he answers, and
closes the book. She examines the automata. "I have made them all, " Coppelius
says. She stops in front of Frantz. "And that one?" she asks. "It is like the
rest, " he answers. She sees a dagger and pricks her own finger with the point
of it and then amuses herself by thrusting it at the little Moor. Coppelius
roars with laughter… but she approaches Frantz… The old man stops her and she
turns against him and chases him around the studio. At last he disarms her. He
throws a cloak over her shoulders, and it seems to awaken in her a world of new
ideas. She dances a Spanish dance. Then she finds a Scotch scarf-pin and taking
it in her hands, she dances a jig. She jumps and runs around, throwing
everything within her reach to the ground and breaking it! She is decidedly too
lively! What shall Coppelius do!
In the midst of all the noise, Frantz
wakes up. Coppélius now seizes Coppélia and replacing her by main force on the
pedestal, draws the curtains. He then goes up to Frantz and orders him to leave.
"Go along!" he cries, "you are good for nothing."
Then he stops and
listens. Did he not hear the tune which generally accompanies the movement of
the automata? He jumps up and while he is staring at Coppélia, who has started
her old movements, Swanilda skips out unobserved from behind the curtain. She
sets the other two automata going. "Are these two also moving by themselves?"
Coppélius exclaims. All at once he sees Swanilda disappearing with Frantz. He
has a vague notion that some game has been played on him and falls heavily in
the midst of the automata which keep moving as if to mock at their master’s
grief and despair.
A lawn in front of the
baronial castle. At the back, the bell, the gift of the lord of the manor, is
hung from poles, decorated with garlands and banners. A car covered with
allegorical designs and on which are grouped the various actors for the fete,
has just stopped in front of the bell.
The priests have pronounced a
benediction over the bell. The betrothed couples who are to be given a dowry,
and are to be united on this festal day go and bow before the baron. Frantz and
Swanilda complete their mutual reconciliation. Frantz has disabused himself of
his temporary infatuation and thinks no more of Coppelia. He knows what a joke
has been played upon him. Swanilda forgives him and giving him her hand,
advances with him before the lord of the manor.
All at once there is a
stir among the crowd. Coppelius comes to implore and even to demand justice;
they have ridiculed him and have broken everything in his house, his
masterpieces made with the greatest labor and patience, have been smashed. Who
is going to pay him? Swanilda, who has just received her dowry, quickly offers
it to Coppelius. But the lord of the manor stops Swanilda. She may keep her
dowry. He throws a purse to him and whilst Coppelius departs with his money, he
gives the signal for the festivities to begin.
The Bell-ringer alights
first from the car. He summons the Morning Hours. They appear, quickly followed
by Aurora. The bell rings! It is the Hour of Prayer. Aurora vanishes, chased by
the Hours of Day. These are the working hours, and the young girls and reapers
begin their work. The bell rings again! It announces a wedding.
from: Delibes' Ballet of Coppelia. Paris Opera Libretto. Under the Direction of
Mr. Heinrich Conried. The Original Italian, French or German Libretto with a
Correct English Translation. New York : F. Rullman. [1900s]
Schedule for Coppelia - L. Delibes (Ballet in two acts) 2013