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Overture to "Mignon"

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Ambroise Thomas

Ambroise Thomas (comp. John R. Bourgeois)

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General Info

Year: 1866 /
Duration: c. 5:35
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: U.S. Marine Band
Cost: Score and Parts - Unknown


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Mignon was produced at the Opéra Comique in Paris on November 17, 1866, with Galli-Marié (creator of the Carmen role nine years later) playing the title role. It was an instant as well as a long-run success. Over 500 performances were given in the first 13 years. At the age of 84 Thomas was awarded the Grand Croix of the Légion d'honneur on the occasion of the 1000th performance.

The opera opens with a short pastoral movement, leading directly into the melody "Connais tu le pays? – Do You Know the Land?," referring to Mignon's description of her long-lost country. The other principal motif is from the air "Je suis Titania – Y Am Titania." sung by Mignon's rival, Philine. The work concludes with the spirited Polacca, a colorful dance at the end of Art II.

The libretto by Michele Carré and Jules Barbier is based on an episode from Goethe's Wilhelm Meister; several of Goethe's poems are set as arias. The plot has to do with the adventures of Wilhelm, a young man wandering in search of knowledge, and Mignon, a girl stolen by Gypsies from her home in Italy. Following a troupe of actors from place to place, Wilhelm and Mignon meet with many adventures until, at the happy end, Mignon is reunited with her father and assured of Wilhelm's true love.

- Program Note from Program Notes for Band


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State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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  • United States Marine Band (Washington, D.C.) (Jason K. Fettig, conductor) - 8 January 2017

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music


  • Smith, Norman E. (2002). Program Notes for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications, pp. 588.