Platée was written to a libretto by Jacques Autreau that Rameau allowed to be revised for his purposes by Adrien -Joseph Le Valois d’Orville, above all to highlight its comic effects.
In the form of a grotesquerie, we witness Jupiter curing his wife Juno of jealousy. He feigns a wedding celebration with the ugly swamp-nymph Platée. When Juno arrives she has to admit, in view of such a ridiculous rival, that her suspicions were unwarranted.
The work was first performed in Versailles in 1745 at the wedding of the Dauphin Louis with Maria Theresia of Spain. The performance was a failure, however, for the audience considered the rough-hewn comedy and scurrilous characters out of place at a wedding.
It was not until 1749, in Paris, that Platée achieved its breakthrough and became Rameau’s greatest success to date. Another version with altered text was performed from 1754 onwards.
Our vocal score is based on the full score prepared by M. Elizabeth C. Bartlet for publication in the Rameau complete edition (Opera omnia Rameau, volume IV/10, BA8852). Like the full score, it presents the Paris versions of 1749 and 1754 in the main body of the volume while reproducing variants from the Versailles première of 1745 in the appendix.
Orchestral material for both versions is available on hire.
- Straightforward Piano reduction in the Vocal score.
- Appendix with original versions of the passages rewritten for the Paris performances.
- Spacious appearance on the page.
- Full score (BA8852) and Vocal score (BA8852-90) available for sale.