The Emperor of the Moon

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The Emperor of the Moon is a Restoration farce written by Aphra Behn in 1687, based on Italian commedia dell'arte. It was Behn's second most successful play (after The Rover), probably due to the lightness of the plot and its accompanying musical and spectacular entertainment. The music is largely lost today. The play was not fitted out like a big opera, because producers were unwilling to finance a costly opera following the failure of Dryden's Albion and Albanius. The plan was to make audiences come back to the playhouse and attend an affordable mini-spectacle like The Emperor of the Moon.


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