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Libretto by Giovanni Francesco Busenello, with the German translation by Richard Bletschacher (I,G)

Scoring

6S,S(orM),M(orS),M,A,2CT(orA),2T(orCT),4T,T(or hBar),2Bar(orT),BBar,
B(orBar),2B (vocal doublings possible); chorus
3recorders-3tbns-continuo(org,chittarone,dulcimer,hpd)-strings
(variable scoring)

Abbreviations (PDF)

Roles

IRIS, Prologue Soprano
AENEAS, Trojan hero Tenor or High Baritone
ANCHISES, father of Aeneas Baritone
ASKANIUS, son of Aeneas Soprano
KREUSA, wife of Aeneas Soprano
JARBAS, king of Hetuler Countertenor
ANNA, sister of Dido Mezzo-Soprano
KASSANDRA, daughter of a Trojan king Soprano
DIDO, Queen of Carthage Soprano
SICHAEUS Tenor
PYRRHOS, a Greek Baritone
KOREBOS, a Greek Tenor
SINON, a Greek Bass
ILEONEOS, Trojan envoy and companion of Aeneas Tenor
AKATES, companion of Aeneas Tenor
HEKUBA, Queen of Troy, wife of Priamos Alto
A MESSENGER Tenor
AN OLD MAN Bass
JUPITER Bass
JUNO Mezzo-Soprano
VENUS Soprano
AMOR Soprano
MERKUR Countertenor
NEPTUN Bass-Baritone
AEOLUS Tenor
FORTUNA Soprano
THREE CARTHAGINIAN LADIES-IN-WAITING SSA
Chorus of Huntsmen Chorus (ATTB)
Chrous of Trojans Chorus (SSATTB)
Time and Place

Troy and Carthage, Ancient times

Synopsis

The sack of Troy. Aeneas and his family ponder their future – he is all for continuing to fight. In attempting to protect his fiancée Cassandra from the Greek Pyrrhus, Chorebus is killed. Venus urges her son Aeneas to leave. His wife Creusa is killed by Greek soldiers: her shade presses him to go. Venus and Fortune agree to aid the fleeing Trojans, though the implacable Juno attempts to destroy them. Neptune, however, takes their side, and they are able to reach Carthage. There Dido is being wooed, without success, by King Iarbas, the rejection of whose suit causes him to lose his reason. Venus sends Cupid in the form of Aeneas's son Ascanius to cause Dido to fall in love with the Trojan exile. No sooner has she capitulated than Mercury appears to Aeneas and orders him on to Italy to found a new kingdom. Dido rails against his decision and is visited by the angry shade of her dead husband Sichaeus. Following Aeneas's departure, Mercury cures Iarbas, who renews his suit to Dido. She turns from thoughts of suicide and agrees to marry him.

Moods

Dramatic, Tragic

Subjects

History, Literary, Mythology

Recommended Recording
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