Pygmalion times two this week, October 11, on The Lyric Stage
Jean-Phillipe Rameau, the prolific French composer who lived from 1683-1763, is best known for his harpsichord pieces and his operas. He composed at least 31 operas, most of which survive today, including in 1748, his one act Pygmalion, this week's music on the Lyric Stage.
Rameau and his librettist, Ballot de Savot, based their story on the myth of Pygmalion as told in Ovid's Metamorphoses. In this version, the sculptor Pygmalion creates a beautiful statue to which he declares his love. His girlfriend, Céphise, begs for attention; Pygmalion spurns her and entreats the goddess Venus to bring his statue to life. Magically the statue enlivens, sings, and dances. Cupid arrives and praises Pigmalion for his artistry and faith in his powers. Much celebratory dancing and singing follows, attesting to the power of love. Cupid helpfully finds another lover for abandoned Céphis.
James Richman is the harpsichorist and leads soloists, the Concert Royal Orchestra and the Concert Royal Chorus.
Then we have two songs from Julie Andrews and Rex Harrison from the original cast of My Fair Lady, Lerner and Lowe's take on Shaw's Pygmalion.