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*Deutsch

Tchaikovsky, Peter

The Queen of Spades (Original edition) (1890)

(Pique Dame)
Duration: 163 minutes
Opera in three acts

Libretto by Modest Tchaikovsky and the composer after the novel by Alexander Pushkin; original German version by Max Kalbeck; new German version by Rolf Lauckner; English version by Rosa Newmarch (R,G,E)

Scoring
3S,2M,2A,4T,3Bar,2B; chorus; ballet; 3.2(II=corA).2(bcl).0-4.2.3.1-timp.perc(1)-harp-pft-strings
Cyrillic vocal material with German phonetic notation available upon request.
Abbreviations (PDF).


Territory
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.



World Premiere
12/19/1890
Mariinsky Theatre, St Petersburg
Company: unknown

Roles

HERMAN, an officerTenor
COUNT TOMSKYBaritone
PRINCE YELETSKYBaritone
TCHEKALINSKYTenor
SOURINBass
TCHAPLITSKYTenor
NARUMOVBass
MASTER OF CEREMONIESTenor
COUNTESSMezzo Soprano
LISA, her granddaughterSoprano
PAULINEContralto
GOVERNESSMezzo Soprano
MASHA, Lisa's maidSoprano
A boyspeaking role
PRILEPASoprano
MILOVSORContralto
SLATOGORBaritone
nurses, governesses, boys, girls, promenaders, guests and gamblers


Time and Place
St Petersburg, end of the 18th century


Synopsis
When Lisa meets Herman, she realises that her engagement to Prince Yeletsky is not exactly blissful. Herman is ardently in love with Lisa; her noble descent, however, makes an official relationship impossible. Her grandmother, who is nicknamed Pique Dame due to a passion for gambling when she was younger, has grave misgivings on meeting Herman. Indeed, Herman has the idea of making a profit from revealing the countess’s gambling secret and using the money to wrench Lisa from Yeletsky's hands. In the meantime, Lisa has fallen in love with Herman and, at a ball, secretly gives him the key to the countess's room. There he urges the countess to reveal her secret; the sight of his gun, however, scares her to death. Lisa realises that Herman was apparently more interested in the secret of the cards than in her love. She wants to talk to him but finds that he has been possessed with gambling fever…


Moods
Dramatic, Poetic, Tragic


Subjects
Magic/Mystery, Relationships, Society


Recommended Recording
Gegam Grigorian/Maria Guleghina/Irina Arkhipova/Olga Borodina/Nikolai Putilin/Vladimir Chernov/Vladimir Solodovnikov/Sergei Alexashkin/Evgeni Boitsov/Nikolai Gassiev/Gennadi Bezzubenkov/Ludmila Filatova/Tatiana Filimoniva/Kirov Opera/Valery Gergiev 
Philips 438 141-2

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