L'école de la jeunesse

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L'école de la jeunesse ou Le Barnevelt françois (The School of Youth or The French Barnwell) is an opéra comique (specifically a comédie mêlée d'ariettes) in three acts by the composer Egidio Duni. The libretto, by Louis Anseaume, is based on George Lillo's play The London Merchant or The History of George Barnwell (1731). The opera was first performed at the Opéra-Comique, Paris on 24 January 1765.

Main roles[edit]

Cast Voice type Premiere Cast,[1] 24 January 1765
(Conductor: -)
Cléon tenor Jean-François Lejeune
M. Oronte, Cléon's uncle baritone[2] Joseph Caillot
Sophie, bethrothed to Cléon soprano Marie-Thérèse Laruette, 'Madame Laruette'
Dubois, a valet of M. Oronte tenor[3] Jean-Baptiste Dehesse (fr)
Hortense, a young widow soprano Pétronille-Rosalie Beaupré
Finette, an attendant of Hortense soprano Eulalie Desgland(s)
Mondor, a friend of Hortense haute-contre Jean-Louis Laruette (fr)
Damis tenor[3] Robert Desbrosses
Javard, a creditor of Cléon basse-taille (bass-baritone)[4] M. Renaud
A Gascon knight haute-contre Antoine Trial
A baron basse-taille (bass-baritone)[4] not reported
A singer tenor[5] M. Lobreau
A milliner spoken Rosalie Lafond
A bailiff
A pedlar
spoken Gabiel-Éléonor-Hervé Dubus Champville, 'Soli'
A valet spoken not reported


  1. ^ According to the original libretto.
  2. ^ Caillot, the first performer, was endowed with a very wide compass which enabled him to sing as a basse taille, but also to reach up to the haute-contre tones (Jean Gourret, Histoire de l'Opéra-Comique, Paris, Les publications universitaires, 1978, p. 43). According to Rodolfo Celletti "he was a baritenor and a bass at the same time": Grétry and Monsigny used to notate his parts in the bass clef, but to set them in high-baritone tessiture (Voce di tenore, Milan, Idealibri, 1989, p. 59, ISBN 88-7082-127-7).
  3. ^ a b Notated in the tenor clef in the original score.
  4. ^ a b Notated in the bass clef in the original score.
  5. ^ The role of 'Le chanteur' is assessed as a tenor part by Elisabeth Cook. It is notated in the tenor clef in the original score.
  • Original libretto: L'École de la jeunesse, ou Le Barnevelt français, Comédie. En trois Actes et en vers, mêlée d'ariettes, Paris. Duchesne, 1775 (accessible online as a Google ebook-gratis)
  • Original score: L'École de la jeunesse, ou Le Barnevelt françois, Comédie. En trois Actes et en vers, Paris, Chez l'Auteur & Lyon, Chez Castaud, s.d. (accessible for free online at Gallica - B.N.F.
  • Casaglia, Gherardo (2005). "L'école de la jeunesse, 24 January 1765". Almanacco Amadeus (Italian).
  • Cook, Elisabeth (1992), 'Ecole de la jeunesse, L in The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, ed. Stanley Sadie (London) ISBN 0-333-73432-7