Bizet Farandole Analysis Essay

Manuscript vocal score (extracts):

US-CAh bMS Mus 264(98) (Pauline Viardot papers). No. 5 (Habanera) p. 14-15, No. 10 (Seguedille), p. 16-19, in the hand of Claudie Viardot, October 1875.

  • Printed affiche: Choudens, 1875. Prudent Leray, lithography in black and white, 70 x 50 cm. F-Po, US-Su, Vente Alde 20-4-2007. Reproduced in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, London: Macmillan, 1980, vol. 2, p. 759.

Printed librettos:


Facsimile of p. 41 in Oeser, vol. II, p. 713.


F-Pn (Tolbiac) 8o Yth 2694

GB-Lbl 11739.e.32

US-BEm ML50 B54 C3 case X

US-NYpm (Fuld) (inscribed by Meilhac and Halévy to F. Sarcey)

US-PRu ML50.B625 C22 1875


KK Hof-Operntheater, Vienna, 1875, in German (translated by Julius Hopp). US-Wc (Schatz Collection 1054).


Rullman, New York, 30 p., [1878], in English and Italian. US-Cn.


French, London, 26 p., [1878], in English and Italian. US-U.


Dickens & Evans, London, 35 p., [1879], in English (translated by Henry Hersee). GB-Lbl.


Marshall, Melbourne, 1879, in English (tr. Fred Lyster)


Sonzogno, Milan, 70 p., 1881, in Italian. US-CAt, US-Wc (Schatz Collection 1055). Reprinted in 1883 and 1885 (US-CAt).


Ahn, Cologne, 46 p., 1885, in German (translated by Julius Hopp). D-B. Reprinted in 1906 and later. D-B, CH-Bps.


Ahn, Cologne, 54 p., no date, in German. US-U.


Vluda, Madrid, 1888, in Spanish. US-CHH.


Argus, Cape Town, 28 p., 1895. GB-Lbl.


Fürstner, Berlin, 48 p., c. 1895, as Arien und Gesänge, in German.


Ahn, Bonn, 46 p., c. 1900, in German (translated by J. Hopp). GB-NWm.


Calmann-Lévy, Théâtre de Meilhac et Halévy, t. VII, 1902. F-Pn.


Fürstner, Berlin, 42 p., c. 1913, in German (translated by D. Louis, i.e. Julius Hopp). F-Pn Th B 2643, F-Pn 8o Yth 29812, CH-Bps, D-B.


Wajner, Warsaw, 15 p., 1917, in Polish (translated by B. Drzewiecka). D-B.


Wallishauser, Vienna, 54 p., 1922, in German.


Steyrermühl, Vienna, 72 p., 1925, in German. D-B.


Elkin Matthews & Marrot, London, 80 p., 1932, in English (translated by John and Ada Galsworthy). US-CAh, US-STu, US-Wc.


Universal, Vienna, 64 p., 1937, in German (translated by Gustav Brecher). D-B.


Staatsoper, Munich, 85 p., 1937, with dialogue, in German (translated by C. Studer).


Oertel, Grunewald, 43 p., 1946, in German (translated by D. Louis, i.e. Julius Hopp). GB-NWm.


Schirmer, New York, 25 p., 1959, in French and English (translated by Ruth and Thomas Martin).


Kalmus, New York, 55 p., no date, in French and English.


Calmann-Lévy, 1968, 96 p.


Dover, New York, 22 p., 1970, in French and English (translated by Ellen H. Bleiler), with additions from the 1875 version.


, no. 26, 1993, p. 27–94.


, London, 1982, in French and English (translated by Nell and John Moody).

Many other librettos have been published in connection with stage productions and recordings.

Printed vocal scores:


  • pages:

    title page, blank, Table, blank, music 1–351, blank


    Le Ménestrel, 14-3-1875; Bibliographie de la France, 17-4-1875 @ 15 fr.


    Bizet's contract with Choudens was signed on 15-1-1875.


    F-Pn Rés. 2694 (proofs of 20 pages as separate sheets, corrected by Bizet). Facsimile of p. 18 in Curtiss, facsimile no. 22. Facsimile of p. 190 in Schott vocal score p. 40.

    F-Po Rés.1088 (inscribed by Bizet 'au parrain de mes quatre enfants avec les témoignages de ma meilleure affection'. Didion identifies the 'parrain' as Pasdeloup, but it was more probably Deloffre). Gallica.

    F-Pn Vm5 873 (dépôt légal 18-3-1875)

    S-Smf (inscribed by Bizet to Mademoiselle Marquet)

    71 (1967) (inscribed by Bizet to Mme Trélat)

    (inscribed by Bizet 'à mon ami Charles Ponchard toute ma reconnaissance pour son concours si dévoué et si affectueux Georges Bizet'), Sotheby's, Paris, 28-6-2017

    Lubrano Catalogue 81 (12-2016) (inscribed by Bizet 'Mon cher Pasdeloup, Voici un faible témoignage de mon affection et de ma reconnaissance pour les services immenses que vous avez rendus et rendez chaque jour à notre art. Votre ami Georges Bizet.'

    D-Mbs 4 63558

    E-Mn M/2057

    GB-Lbl F.119.c

    GB-Ob Mus.22 d.1056

    US-CAe Mus 629.1.661 PHI

    US-CAh *93B-78F




    US-NYpm PMC 52

    US-NYpm (Fuld)



    US-Wc M1503 B625 c. 1875 (with the telegram sent by Ludovic Halévy to Hippolyte Rodrigues on 3-6-1875).

    4-12-2007 and 2-2008 @£1200


    12-2009 and 2011 @£4500

  • 2

    Choudens, père et fils, pl. no. A.C. 3082, 351 p., 1875, a second issue which offers options for cuts on p. 20 and p. 276, and has the page number 175 corrected to 195 in the Table. Copies: GB-Lll, GB-NWm, S-Smf, US-CAe Mus 629.1.661.1 PHI, US-CAe Mus 629.1.661.1, US-CAt, US-CHH, US-MAu, US-Su, 3-12-2008.

  • 3

    Choudens père et fils, pl. no. A.C. 3082, 363 p., 1877. Same title page.

    This and all subsequent Choudens editions (and those derived from them) include fifteen passages of recitative by Ernest Guiraud. Some of these are newly numbered as 3bis, 6bis, 7bis, 12bis, 14bis (Bizet’s 14bis became 14ter), 14quater, 15bis, 16bis, 19bis, 20bis and 22bis; additional recitatives were added to nos. 3, 9, 16 and 22. The réplique cues nevertheless still appear on those pages which followed dialogue in the original version.

    Certain cuts were made also. No. 2 was omitted (with the Prélude assigned as no. 1 to align with the numbering of the remaining scenes), and bars 91–169 were cut from no. 23.

    No. 25 has the note 'Les théâtres qui voudraient intercaler un ballet au 4e acte feront chanter ce Chœur avec le texte en italique en supprimant la partie de Zuniga. Si l’on exécute ce morceau sans la danse, il ne faut pas faire la reprise indiquée à la page 321.' This repeat was applied to bars 57–98. The ballets found in the full score after no. 25 are not shown. Higher alternative notes were supplied throughout Carmen’s role.

    The first state of this edition has 'opéra-comique' on the title page, the second state and all later issues have 'opéra'.

    The full score shows the same cuts as this edition of the vocal score, i.e. no. 2 (complete), bars 90–160 of no. 24, and bars 111–125 of no. 25.

  • 4

    Choudens père et fils, 265 rue St Honoré, A.C. 3554, 375 p., 1877, in German (translated by D. Louis [i. e. Julius Hopp] and Italian (translated by Achille de Lauzières). This score corresponds to the 363-page French score. A document in the records that this was published on 26-9-1877.

    Copies: F-Pn Vm5 877, CH-Bps, D-B, D-Mbs, GB-Lbl, GB-Ouf, US-NYp, US-PHci, US-PHu, US-STu (with Galli-Marié’s notes).

    This was reissued by Choudens from later addresses with different imprints. After 1886 it was described as a ‘nouvelle édition’. This score was also issued by Sonzogno, Milan, with Italian text only.

  • 5

    Metzler, London, pl. no. 5209, 230 p., 1879, in English (translated by Henry Hersee). GB-Lbl F.119.f, GB-Ob Mus 22 d.66, D-B, US-Bp.

  • 6

    Ditson, Boston, 312 p., 1879, with recitatives, in English (translated by Th. Baker) and Italian. GB-Ob, US-Bp, US-Cn, US-NYj, US-U, US-Wc.

  • 7

    Gutheil, Moscow, 421 p., 1887, in Russian (translated by G. Lishina), French and Italian. D-B Kb 535/2, US-Bp, 2009.

  • 8

    Jurgenson, Moscow, pl. no. 13941–13967, 299 p., 1888, in French and Russian (translated anon). US-CAe.

  • 9

    Choudens, pl. no. A.C. 12435, 205 p., in Russian (translated by A. Gornakova). US-NYp JMF 74-375.

  • 10

    Schirmer, New York, pl. no. 12117, 391 p., 1895, in French and English (translated by Th. Baker). GB-Lbl, US-U, US-Wc. IMSLP. Reprinted in 1923.

  • 11

    Choudens, Paris, and Peters, Leipzig, pl. no. 8750, 274 p., [1901], edited by Gustav F. Kogel, in German (translated by Julius Hopp). CH-Bps, D-B Kb 525/4, D-B 4o N.Mus. 3560, US-CHH, US-SLug. IMSLP. Reissued in 1933, edited by Kurt Soldan.

  • 12

    Metzler, London, 346 p., 1909, in English (translated by Hermann Klein). GB-Lbbc has one copy with English translation by Christopher Hassall, and one copy with English translation by John and Ada Galsworthy.

  • 13

    Metzler, London, 200 p., 1911, arranged by Emil Kreuz, in English (translated by Henry Hershee). GB-Lbbc.

  • 14

    Universal Edition, Vienna, pl. no. U.E. 954, 296 p., no date, edited by Wilhelm Kienzl, in German, with dialogue as well as recitatives. D-B, S-Smf, US-BLl.

  • 15

    Ditson, Boston, 389 p., 1914. US-Wc.

  • 16

    Ricordi, Milan, pl. no. 115470, 377 p., in Italian. US-CAe.

  • 17

    Novello, London, 152 p., 1926, in English (translated by Lucia Young), edited by William McNaught. GB-Lbbc.

  • 18

    Winthrop Rogers, London, 152 p., 1926, in English (translated by Theo. Baker), edited by Maurice Besly.

  • 19

    Barich, Milan, 1927, in Italian (translated by N.N.). CH-Bps.

  • 20

    Urbánek, Prague, 295 p., 1927, in Czech (translated by Eliska Krásnohorska). D-B.

  • 21

    Lyra, Leipzig, 198 p., 1927, in German. D-B.

  • 22

    Boosey & Hawkes, New York, pl. no. US Bk. 251, 401 p., 1954, in French and English (translated by Virginia Card and George Houston) with dialogues and production notes. US-Bp, US-SLp.

  • 23

    Cramer, London, 348 p., 1954, in English (translated by Hermann Klein and Henry Hersee, revised by R. Barclay Wilson).

  • 24

    Schirmer, New York, pl. no. 12117, 391 p., 1958, in French and English (translated by Ruth and Thomas Martin).

  • 25

    Ahn & Simrock, Berlin and Wiesbaden, pl. no. A&S 354, 405 p., 1961, edited by Pierre Stoll, in German (translated by Heinrich Strobel).

  • 26

    Alkor-Edition, Kassel, [12] + 414 p., 1964, in French and German (translated by Walter Felsenstein), edited by Fritz Oeser. This edition was based on the early sources, but it does not correspond with Bizet’s 1875 score. It includes both dialogues and Guiraud’s recitatives and some passages not published before.

  • 27

    Alkor-Edition, Kassel, no. AE 129a, [14] + 414 p., 1969, edited by Oeser, revised edition.

  • 28

    Salabert, 136 p., 1982, edited by Marius Constant, Jean-Claude Carrière, and Peter Brook, as La Tragédie de Carmen.

  • 29

    Schott, Mainz, no. 7965, 490 p., 2000, edited by Robert Didion, in French and German (translated by Josef Heinzelmann). This is the first modern edition to be based on the 1875 vocal score, although a number of passages from earlier sources are shown in their proper place: 42 bars in no. 3, 36 bars in no. 4, 56 bars in no. 8, 29 bars in no. 13, and 14 bars in no. 17. It restored the accompaniment of melodramas in nos. 3 and 13. It matches the Eulenburg full score shown below.

  • 30

    Dover, Mineola, 391 p., 2002, in French and English (translated by Th. Baker), reprinted from Schirmer 1895/1923.

  • 31

    Hermann, Vienna, 306 p., 2009, edited by Michael Rot, in French.

  • 32

    Ricordi, reprint of Choudens 363-page edition.

  • 33

    Eroica, c. 2010, reprint of Choudens 363-page edition.

  • 34

    Peters, London, no. EP7548a, xxxv + 399 p., 2013, in French and English (translated by David Parry), edited by Richard Langham Smith.

Printed vocal score, extracts:

  • 24 separate numbers:

    1Chœur des gamins ( = no. 3)
    2Chœur des cigarières ( = no. 4)
    3Habanera ( = no. 5)
    3bisHabanera ( = no. 5 in E minor)
    4Duo ( = no. 7)
    5Séguedille ( = no. 10)
    5bisSéguedille ( = no. 10 in E)
    6Chanson bohème ( = no. 12)
    7Chanson du Toréador ( = no. 14)
    7bisChanson du Toréador ( = no. 14 in G)
    7terChanson du Toréador ( = no. 14 in A)
    8Quintette ( = no. 15)
    9Chanson ( = no. 16)
    10Duo ( = no. 17)
    11Cantabile (‘La fleur’ from no. 17)
    11bisCantabile (‘La fleur’ from no. 17 in B♭)
    12Duo ( = no. 20)
    13Strophes (‘En vain pour éviter’ from no. 20) 19
    14Trio ( = no. 21)
    14bisTrio ( = no. 21 in E♭)
    15Cavatine ( = no. 22)
    15bisCavatine ( = no. 22 in C)
    16Duo ( = no. 23)
    17Duo ( = no. 27)

    Choudens, 265 faubourg St Honoré, pl. no. A.C. 3106 – 3123, 1875 (ann: Bibliographie de la France, 15-5-1875).

    Later added:

    18Couplets de la Messagère (‘Votre mère avec moi’ from no. 7)
    18bisCouplets de la Messagère (‘Votre mère avec moi’ from no. 7 in E♭)

    Choudens continued to offer extracts in a variety of different forms, from all their later addresses. Some of these are shown below. It is possible that these extracts were also issued as voice parts only. Nos. 3 and 9 were issued in this form between 1889 and 1892 with plate numbers A.C. 3177 and A.C. 6036, 2 p. F-Pn 4o Vm7 2057 (51 and 58). The first plate number suggests an original issue in 1875.

  • 2

    Choudens, pl. no. A.C. 3815–3838, 1877, in German and Italian, 24 extracts derived from the Choudens 1877 vocal score. US-NYp (nos 3 and 3bis). US-DMu (no. 3, pl. no. 3817). US-SLug (no 3, pl. no. 3817).

  • 3

    Choudens, pl. no. A.C. 4046–4048, c. 1877, extracts nos 5, 5bis and 6. US-SLug (No. 6, pl. no. 4048, 5 p.; No. 5, pl. no. 4046, 5 p. US-SLug; No. 5bis: Choudens, pl. no. A.C. 4047, in German and Italian. D-B.

  • 4

    Choudens, père et fils, 265 rue St Honoré, pl. no. A.C. 4334–4338, extract nos 12–17. US-SLug (pl. no. 4338, 9 p., no. 17, and pl. no. 4334, 7 p., no. 12).

  • 5

    Choudens fils, 30 Boulevard des Capucines, A.C. 3082. Certain extracts were issued as large-format reprints from the 1875 vocal score. US-SLug (extract nos 2, 4, 10)

  • 6

    Metzler, London, with Choudens pl. no. A.C. 3946, 5 p., 1878, extract no. 3 as ‘Love the Vagrant, The Celebrated Havanera in Carmen’, in English (translated by H.B. Farnie). In two keys (D minor and E minor). GB-En, GB-Lbl H.2476 (high key) (stamped 20-7-1878), GB-Ob (high key).

  • 7

    Metzler, London, pl. no. M. 5076, 7 p., 1878, extract no. 7, ‘Chanson du Toréador’ in Italian (translated by A. de Lauzières), in two keys. GB-En, GB-Lbl H.2476 (high key) (stamped 20-7-1878), GB-Ob (high key).

  • 8

    Metzler, London, pl. no. M. 5193, 9 p., 1879, extract no. 7, ‘Sirs, your Toast’, in English (translated Henry Hersee), in three keys. GB-Lbl, GB-Ob (low key).

  • 9

    Ditson, Boston, pl. no. 46713, 9 p., 1878, extract no. 7, as ‘Tis of her thou art speaking’, and extract no. 14, in French and English (translated by L. C. Elson). US-PHf (translated by Theodore T. Baker), US-NYj.

  • 10

    Wm. A. Pond, New York, 1879, extracts nos 3, 7 and 10, in French, English and Italian.

  • 11

    Balmer & Weber, St Louis, pl. no. 3759, 9 p., 1879, extract no. 14, in English (translated by C. Lange), German and Italian. US-SLug.

  • 12

    Choudens, pl. no. A.C. 6074, 5 p., c. 1883, extract no. 1. US-BLl, US-SLug.

  • 13

    W.A. Evans, Boston, c. 1890, extract no. 3, as ‘Love, the Vagrant’, in French, English (translated by H.B. Farnie) and Italian.

  • 14

    Schirmer, New York, no date, extracts nos 5, 6, 7, 14 and 15, in French, English (translated by F.W. Rosier) and Italian, some in two keys.

  • 15

    Century Music Publishing Co., New York, pl. no. 738, 9 p., no date, extract no. 7, as ‘Song of the Toreador’, in English (translated by H. Millard). US-BLl.

There were innumerable other publications of extracts from Carmen from the 1890s on.

Printed full scores:

  • pages:

    2 volumes: vol. 1: title page, blank, Table, blank, music p. 1–330; vol. 2: title page, blank, Table, blank, music p. 331–579, blank, p. 581.


    1877, to judge from the pl. no. The collection Ballets et fragments, evidently from 1875, suggests that the contents of the Carmen score had already been determined by that date.


    The recitatives are by Guiraud, and the version accords with the revised edition (in 363 p.) of the vocal score. In addition Guiraud retouched the orchestration, especially the horn parts in no. 7 and at the beginning of no. 25. Three ballets have been inserted in the last act, as nos 25B, 25C, and 25D, on pp. 481–514, the first two adapted from nos. 22 and 19 of L’Arlésienne, and the third is the Danse bohémienne from Scènes bohémiennes. On p. 372, at bar 186 of no. 20, a footnote allows for a transposition up a semitone of Carmen’s ‘En vain pour éviter’. The return transposition in the three bars 228–30 is provided for with four bars shown at the end of the score on p. 581 (580 being blank).

  • 2

    Choudens, Editeur, 30, Boulevard des Capucines, pl. no. A.C. 3795, 579 p. (in one volume), after 1889. GB-Lbl Hirsch II 66 (copy 230), US-Bp (lacks title page), US-NYpm, US-Wc M1500 B622 (copy 222), (2001) (Choudens, fils; copy 65)

  • 3

    Choudens, ‘In die Edition Peters aufgenommen’, pl. no. 9028, 574 p., [1905], in German (translated by Julius Hopp) only. This edition includes Guiraud’s recitatives but omits the third ballet, no. 25C. F-Pn Vmb 5389, GB-Lbl, S-Smf, US-BLl. This was reissued in 1933, in French and German, edited by Kurt Soldan.

  • 4

    International Music Company, New York, 1950

L’Arlésienne, incidental music for orchestra by French composer Georges Bizet, written to accompanyAlphonse Daudet’s play of the same name, which premiered on October 1, 1872. The most famous movement is the “Farandole,” which sets a traditional Provençal tune against a light and playful dance melody, making deft use of polyphonic textures.

Daudet’s play concerns a young man torn between two loves—a gentle young woman from the countryside and a seductive charmer from Arles. When the young woman from Arles—who never appears on stage—proves to be unfaithful, the young man attempts to console himself by returning to his country girlfriend, but he is unable to forget his other passions. Lost in lovesick despair, he takes his own life.

Bizet was asked by Daudet to write music for the play. He composed a variety of songs, dances, and interludes that the playwright eventually conceded were better than the play itself. The play was a failure, closing after only 21 performances.

After the play closed, Bizet salvaged his music by arranging selections from his score into a concert suite. He chose four movements for this purpose and might have crafted another suite had he not died a few years later. A colleague of Bizet’s, Ernest Guiraud, later arranged a second suite. Each of the suites contains a movement that quotes a Provençal folk melody known as the “Marcho dei Rei.”


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