Skip to content

Your Cart


You have 0 items in your cart.

Register Sign in Wishlist

Dance and Drama in French Baroque Opera
A History

$142.00 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Opera

  • Date Published: December 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107137899
Average user rating
(1 review)

$ 142.00 (C)

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Paperback, eBook

Looking for an examination copy?

If you are interested in the title for your course we can consider offering an examination copy. To register your interest please contact providing details of the course you are teaching.

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • Since its inception, French opera has embraced dance, yet all too often operatic dancing is treated as mere decoration. Dance and Drama in French Baroque Opera exposes the multiple and meaningful roles that dance has played, starting from Jean-Baptiste Lully's first opera in 1672. It counters prevailing notions in operatic historiography that dance was parenthetical and presents compelling evidence that the divertissement - present in every act of every opera - is essential to understanding the work. The book considers the operas of Lully - his lighter works as well as his tragedies - and the 46-year period between the death of Lully and the arrival of Rameau, when influences from the commedia dell'arte and other theatres began to inflect French operatic practices. It explores the intersections of musical, textual, choreographic and staging practices at a complex institution - the Académie Royale de Musique - which upheld as a fundamental aesthetic principle the integration of dance into opera.

    • Proposes a new view of the role of dance in French opera of the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries
    • Considers the operas of Lully and his successors from a variety of perspectives and demonstrates connections between theatrical practices at the lofty Paris Opera and the low-brow theaters in Paris
    • Readers will gain a richer understanding of Parisian theatrical life that integrates discussions of music, dance and theatrical structure in clear language
    • Provides resources that amplify the discussions in the text, including numerous illustrations, music examples and tables
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    'An indispensable resource for those reconstructing this repertoire for the stage, Harris-Warrick’s book also offers much of interest to scholars in many subspecialties of early modern European history who are willing to do the work of connecting her impressive study to the world beyond the stage.' Chantal Frankenbach, Notes

    Customer reviews

    01st Apr 2017 by Catherineturocy

    RHWarrick has delivered what the early music and dance scene has needed for the past four decades! Finally, dance is given its place alongside the other arts as she deftly steers us through her indepth research on the meaning of dance in the context of opera and how dance is an equal player in performance and the development of French opera. In fact, dance defines French opera and it is the element which made French opera so appealing to the rest of Europe that each nation employed French dancing masters or at least pseudo French dancing masters! This book is a must-read for all practitioners involved in performance and for all scholars who are not familiar with intelligent analysis of dance history. As you can see, I cannot contain my enthusiasm!

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: December 2016
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107137899
    • length: 502 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 180 x 26 mm
    • weight: 1.14kg
    • contains: 40 b/w illus. 56 music examples
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Lully:
    1. The dramaturgy of Lully's divertissements
    2. Constructing the divertissement
    3. Dance foundations
    4. Dance practices on stage
    5. Prologues
    6. The lighter side of Lully
    Part II. The Rival Muses in the Age of Campra:
    7. The muses take the stage
    8. Thalie, muse of comedy
    9. Thalie visits the fairs
    10. The contested comic
    11. Melpomène, muse of tragedy
    12. Melpomène adapts
    13. Terpsichore, muse of the dance
    14. In the traces of Terpsichore
    Appendix 1. Works performed at the Académie Royale de Musique, 1695–1732, in which the impact of the comédie italienne can be seen
    Appendix 2. A partial list of performances consisting of 'fragments', 1702–32
    Appendix 3. The choreographies danced at the Opéra contextualized.

  • Resources for

    Dance and Drama in French Baroque Opera

    Rebecca Harris-Warrick

    General Resources

    Welcome to the resources site

    Here you will find free-of-charge online materials to accompany this book. The range of materials we provide across our academic and higher education titles are an integral part of the book package whether you are a student, instructor, researcher or professional.

    Find resources associated with this title

    Type Name Unlocked * Format Size

    Showing of

    Back to top

    *This title has one or more locked files and access is given only to instructors adopting the textbook for their class. We need to enforce this strictly so that solutions are not made available to students. To gain access to locked resources you either need first to sign in or register for an account.

    These resources are provided free of charge by Cambridge University Press with permission of the author of the corresponding work, but are subject to copyright. You are permitted to view, print and download these resources for your own personal use only, provided any copyright lines on the resources are not removed or altered in any way. Any other use, including but not limited to distribution of the resources in modified form, or via electronic or other media, is strictly prohibited unless you have permission from the author of the corresponding work and provided you give appropriate acknowledgement of the source.

    If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

  • Author

    Rebecca Harris-Warrick, Cornell University, New York
    Rebecca Harris-Warrick is Professor of Music at Cornell University, New York. She has published widely on French Baroque music and dance, with excursions into nineteenth-century opera, and has prepared critical editions of ballets by Lully and of Donizetti's opera, La Favorite. Much of her scholarly work has been informed by her interests in performance; she has studied early dance and performed as a Baroque flutist. She serves on the editorial boards for the Les Oeuvres complètes de Jean-Baptiste Lully and the Journal of the Society for Seventeenth-Century Music. Her research has been supported by fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Mellon Foundation, and the Guggenheim Foundation.

Sign In

Please sign in to access your account


Not already registered? Create an account now. ×

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×

Find content that relates to you

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.