Sister Beatrice and Ardiane, and Barbu Bleue  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Ariane et Barbe-Bleue (Ariane and Bluebeard) is an opera in three acts by Paul Dukas. The French libretto is adapted from the symbolist play by Maurice Maeterlinck. It received its first performance at the Opéra Comique in Paris in 10 May 1907. It has often been compared to the operas Duke Bluebeard's Castle by Bela Bartok which is also based on symbolist play of Maeterlinck and Pelléas et Mélisande by Claude Debussy which is based on another play by Maeterlinck. Both plays feature the character of Mélisande. Dukas, who knew Debussy well, uses Mélisande's musical theme borrowed from Debussy in his opera. Ariane and Blue-Beard has never become a popular opera and is rarely performed; nevertheless Oper Frankfurt premiered a new production in its 2007-2008 season - so it does remain on the repertoire of major opera companies. Three commercial recordings of it exist. There are also recordings of an orchestral suite.


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