Children's and Liturgical Opera Company, LLC
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CHILDREN'S OPERAS/BALLETS: The Goose Girl

 

THE GOOSE GIRL

a ballet opera for children and adults based on the Grimm tale

libretto and music by Susan Hulsman Bingham

 

(l. to r.) Cristina Poirier, Maid-in-Waiting, and Abbey Friday,
The Princess, in THE GOOSE GIRL • Photo: New Haven Register

 
VOICING:
  Treble (1), sop (2), mezzo sop (1), ten (1), bar (2)
CAST:
  OLD QUEEN mezzo soprano
FALADA (talking horse) baritone
PRINCESS soprano
MAID-IN-WAITING soprano
PRINCE tenor
KING tenor

ACCOMPANIMENT:

 

treble chorus, SATB chorus

CHORUS:

 

treble chorus (non-acting except at end of opera)

DANCE:

 

two ballet dancers act the parts of the PRINCESS and the MAID-IN-WAITING

PROPS:

 

We used silhouettes (see photo below)

SOURCE OF TEXTS:

 

Grimm

LANGUAGE:

 

English

MUSICAL STYLE:

 

tonal, melodic, lyrical

SCENES:

 

one

SOUND CLIP:
  Click here to hear a sound clip of this piece sung by Kyle Purett, tenor, and Jeremy Hutchins, treble, and the Worthington Hooker Third and Fourth Grade Choruses.

DURATION:

 

60 minutes

PREMIER:

 

Worthington Hooker Elementary School, 180 Canner Street, New Haven, CT, 1991

 

 

Worthington Hooker School Students in the Crowd Scene,
THE GOOSE GIRL. Note SILHOUETTES in background.
Photo: Jennifer W. Lester

 

SYNOPSIS

A dying Queen sends her daughter to the distant kingdom of her betrothed. En route, the Princess's wicked Maid-in-Waiting switches clothes with her, exchanges the Princess' talking horse, Falada, for her own, and is welcomed into the new kingdom as the Prince's betrothed.

In order that Falada not divulge her treachery, the Maid-in-Waiting orders him killed. The Princess asks that his severed head be hung in the gateway where she can greet him when she passes by.

While the grieving Princess is tending geese in the fields, her companion, a young boy named Conrad, grows angry because she will not let him touch her golden hair. In a stomping fit, Conrad tells the King of his frustration. The King, his interest piqued, hides near the gateway and hears Falada speak of the Maid-in-Waiting's deception. Then he coaxes the Princess's story out of her by having her tell it inside a giant imperial stove.

The Maid-in-Waiting is tricked by the townspeople into deciding her own fate, and the true Princess is united with her betrothed at last.

 

Musical score: $85. Price includes shipping within the US as well as performing rights and permission to make sufficient copies for cast and accompanists to use by one company or group for one season.




Downloadable PDF file of THE GOOSE GIRL: $45.

 

DVD of The Goose Girl: $28. Price includes shipping within the US.

 

CD of The Goose Girl: $17. Price includes shipping within the US.

 

 
Composer's comment: We used a large, non-acting children's chorus (which acted as "the crowd" at the end), two very talented young ballet dancers as the Princess and the Maid-in-Waiting, and two sopranos who served as the "voices" of the two young women as they danced. This was very effective and allowed the schoolchildren (chorus members) to learn a lot of music without being distracted by staging demands. THE GOOSE GIRL is dramatic and exciting and has worked very well as a year-end performance piece. SHB
 

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