The Dramatic Criticism of Elizabeth Charlotte, Duchesse D'Orleans, With an Annotated Chronology of Performances of The Popular and Court Theatres in France (1671-1722)
Reconstructed from Her Letters
Elizabeth Charlotte, duchesse d'Orléans, the second wife of the king's brother, left a voluminous correspondence. Through her forthright attitude, set against the context of the sometimes mealy-mouthed French court and French society of 1671-1722, we can learn much about the successes and failures, quarrels and crises in the theatre, about the hostility of the Church, and the actors, actresses, and playwrights as individuals. This scholarly study, the outcome of seven years' work, is the first full-length analysis of the topic. It establishes as nearly as possible a chronological list of what she saw. The information gathered about the theatre at court has never been published in collected or collated form. This unique record is of significance for theatre and opera studies of the period, as well as for the study of Elizabeth Charlotte (also known as 'Madame', the 'Princess Palatine' and 'Liselotte') herself.
". . . they have given us a major reference work, one of the most complete and accurate pictures available of the theatre of the period, and an important reminder that our canonized classics were not always cultural icons." - The French Review
Table of Contents
Part One: Notes of a Theatre-Goer. Introductory; The querelle du théâtre; Theatres and play-going; Inside the opera house; Plays and playwrights; Actors and actresses.
Part Two: Performances Seen by Madame. Introductory; Theatres and other venues; Married life, 1671-1701; From the death of Monsieur to the death of Louis XIV, 1702-1715; The Regency, 1715-1722
Appendices. Misdated Letters; Note on Madame's German and Select Glossary; Analysis of performances seen by Madame.
Bibliography and Index
ISBN10: 0-7734- 8834-0 ISBN13: