Photo: Carol Rosegg for The New York City Opera
Performed by the New York City Opera, 1982
Candide (New York City Opera House version) (1982)Duration: 135 minutes
Comic operetta in two acts
Book by Hugh Wheeler, after Voltaire. Lyrics by Richard Wilbur, Stephen Sondheim, John La Touche and Leonard Bernstein (E).
Major roles: S,2M,T,T/Bar,Bar; minor roles: 2S,4T,6Bar,2B; chorus 2(II=picc).1(=corA).2(I=Ebcl,ssax ad lib).1-126.96.36.199-timp.perc(2):SD/ TD/BD/tamb/bongos/maracas/hand drs/tgl/susp.cym/cyms/tam-t/cast/ wdbls/gourd/xyl/glsp/vib/glass harmonica (optional)/chimes- harp-strings.
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.
World premiere of version
New York City Opera, New York, NY
Patricia Birch, chor / Harold Prince, dir
Conductor: John Mauceri
Company: New York City Opera
|VOLTAIRE||Tenor or Baritone|
|DR. PANGLOSS||Tenor or Baritone|
|BUSINESSMAN||Tenor or Baritone|
|GOVERNOR||Tenor or Baritone|
|SECOND GAMBLER (Police Chief)||Tenor or Baritone|
|SAGE||Tenor or Baritone|
|3 Judges||Tenor, Baritone and Bass|
|6 Dons||3 Tenors, 3 Baritones|
|1st Pink Sheep||Soprano|
|2nd Pink Sheep||Soprano|
|Servant of Maximilian|
|2 Bulgarian Soldiers|
|2 Waestphalian Soldiers|
|Don Issachar, the Jew|
|2 Inquisition Agents|
In the castle of Baron Thunder-Ten-Tronck in Westphalia, Dr. Pangloss tutors four children based on his philosophy that "all is for the best in this best of all possible worlds." The children are Cunegonde and Maximilian, the beautiful daughter and son of the Baron, Paquette, a servant girl, and Candide, a bastard cousin. Candide and Cunegonde fall in love and once their feelings are discovered, Candide is banished from Barony and tricked into joining the Bulgarian army to ravage his own homeland. After many misadventures, Candide is borne to Portugal where he discovers Pangloss, now a begger, and both are sentenced before the Spanish Inquisition. An Old Lady leads Candide away and eventually presents him to her mistress who happens to be Cunegonde. The three of them set forth on a harrowing journey to the New World. Meanwhile, in the New World, the Governor of Cartagena, Colombia purchases Maximilian (disguised as a woman) and Paquette as concubines. The Governor falls for Maximilian and is so disgusted upon learning his true gender he decides to sell him to a monastery. Candide eventually arrives at the monastery in the New World and inadvertently stabs Maximilian and runs off into the jungle with Paquette. After further misadventures, the Old Lady helps Candide find Cunegonde, who has since become a prostitute in a gambling casino, so he buys her and the newly brought back to life Maximilian, who happens to be working there as a house slave. Destitute but re-united, the four go to see a wise man that turns out to be Dr. Pangloss. Their old teacher reveals his new plan for happiness to the quartet: man must "work from dawn til’ dusk, in the fields, patiently learning to make his garden grow."
Ethics, History, Society, Literary