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"Vous qui faites l'endormie": The Phantom and the Buried Voices of the Paris Opéra

"Vous qui faites l'endormie": The Phantom and the Buried Voices of the Paris Opéra Abstract Gaston Leroux's Le Fantôme de l'Opéra (1909–10), as well as providing the model for some famous adaptations in other media, represents an important late stage in the development of a venerable French novelistic tradition: the soirée à l'Opéra . Notwithstanding his obvious lack of musical expertise (or perhaps because of it), Leroux's keen exploration of operatic reception deserves its place alongside more eminent contributors to that tradition such as Balzac, Dumas, and Flaubert. The richness of his portrayal of the institution's mythology and place in contemporary popular consciousness derives partly from his direct use of a large number of sources, which goes far beyond the conventions of the Gothic novel. These range from real and fictional operas to reportage concerning the famous fatal accident at the Opéra in 1896 and the rivalry between Christine Nilsson and Marie Miolan-Carvalho. The most significant of them, though, is the set of gramophone records buried underneath the Opéra in 1907, which was Leroux's inspiration and which emerges as the metaphorical key to interpreting the novel—if not the tradition as a whole. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png 19th-Century Music University of California Press

"Vous qui faites l'endormie": The Phantom and the Buried Voices of the Paris Opéra

19th-Century Music , Volume 33 (1) – Jul 1, 2009

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Publisher
University of California Press
Copyright
Copyright © by the University of California Press
ISSN
0148-2076
eISSN
1533-8606
DOI
10.1525/ncm.2009.33.1.062
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract Gaston Leroux's Le Fantôme de l'Opéra (1909–10), as well as providing the model for some famous adaptations in other media, represents an important late stage in the development of a venerable French novelistic tradition: the soirée à l'Opéra . Notwithstanding his obvious lack of musical expertise (or perhaps because of it), Leroux's keen exploration of operatic reception deserves its place alongside more eminent contributors to that tradition such as Balzac, Dumas, and Flaubert. The richness of his portrayal of the institution's mythology and place in contemporary popular consciousness derives partly from his direct use of a large number of sources, which goes far beyond the conventions of the Gothic novel. These range from real and fictional operas to reportage concerning the famous fatal accident at the Opéra in 1896 and the rivalry between Christine Nilsson and Marie Miolan-Carvalho. The most significant of them, though, is the set of gramophone records buried underneath the Opéra in 1907, which was Leroux's inspiration and which emerges as the metaphorical key to interpreting the novel—if not the tradition as a whole.

Journal

19th-Century MusicUniversity of California Press

Published: Jul 1, 2009

Keywords: Key words Leroux , novel , Faust , narrative , gramophone

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