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Diffusion européenne et généralisation des théories de Noverre : Les Horaces et les Curiaces
Jean-Georges Noverre (1727-1810), un artiste européen au siècle des Lumières
Cécile Champonnois
Université de Montréal
The story of the Horatii and Curiatii went through many adaptations from 1640 to 1800, whether it be in engraving, painting, ballet, drama, or musical drama. Noverre’s ballet, first performed in Vienna in 1774 and later given in Paris in 1777, testifies to its author’s creativity, as well as to his artistic influence in France and Europe; this is confirmed by the librettos to Nicolas-François Guillard’s tragédies-lyriques.

Noverre’s connection with opera was extremely close throughout his career (see Iphigénie en Tauride, and his collaboration with Gluck and Guillard in 1779), and it is interesting to note that several classical tragedies choreographed by Noverre and others in the 1760s and 70s were later taken up by the librettists of tragédies- lyriques in the 1780s, including Guillard. Noverre and Gluck’s “reforms” seem to have been motivated by a similar concern for dramatisation and expressivity.