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📖 The Story (contains spoilers):
Lucette, known as Cendrillon, lives with her father, her step-mother and her two step-sisters. The household is busy preparing for a ball but Cendrillon is not allowed to attend
Cendrillon’s fairy godmother enters and conjures up a coach, horses, a stunning dress and glass slippers for Cendrillon, so she can go to the ball without being recognized. But she must leave before midnight.
The Prince is miserable because he must choose a wife from among the party guests. But when an unknown beauty (Cendrillon) arrives at the ball he is enchanted. The clock strikes twelve, and she rushes home, losing one of her glass slippers in her hurry.
Cendrillon’s stepmother and her daughters dismiss the Prince’s interest in the ‘unknown stranger’ and say the Prince spoke contemptuously of her. Cendrillon decides she is too sad to go on living and leaves for the forest. The Prince, too, has gone to the forest looking for the mysterious princess from the ball. Hearing each other, they reaffirm their love and fall into an enchanted sleep.
Months pass. Cendrillon’s father, who found her very ill in the forest, has been caring for her. She has been talking of the ball, the Prince and the forest and she begins to believe that it may all have been a dream. But when princesses from all over the land are summoned to try the glass slipper, Cendrillon realizes she may have been at the ball after all…
💡 Background to the production:
Massenet’s Cendrillon is a touching, romantic interpretation of the much-loved story of Cinderella. The opera is full of wonderful music including the impassioned love duet for Cendrillon and her Prince. Director Laurent Pelly pays tribute to the opera’s fairytale origins, setting his production literally within a storybook.
🎭 Cast and creative team:
Cendrillon/Cinderella: Joyce DiDonato
Prince Charming: Alice Coote
Fairy Godmother: Eglise Gutiérrez
Stepmother: Ewa Podleś
Cendrillon’s father: Jean-Philippe Lafont
Stepsister: Madeleine Pierard
Stepsister: Kai Rüütel
Conductor: Bertrand de Billy
Director/Costume Designer: Laurent Pelly
Set Designer: Barbara de Limburg
The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House/Royal Opera Chorus