Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Opéra-Comique is an opera house in Paris. It is located Place Boieldieu, near the Paris Stock Exchange and not far from the Paris Opera. Although the current building, known as the "salle Favart," was built in 1898, the opera house is in itself the oldest one in Paris. Two previous buildings burnt down in 1838 and 1887, an not uncommon occurrence with theatres in the nineteenth century.
The Opéra-Comique company was established in 1714 to offer French opera as an alternative to Italian opera that then dominated the continent. Productions at the Opéra-Comique distinguished from those at the Opéra by their less formal requirements. French opéra comique, in the 19th century at least, did not have to be comic; the term covered a much wider category of work.
Berlioz's The Damnation of Faust received its ill-fated première on 6 December 1846 at the Opéra-Comique. It was one of the worst setbacks in his career, leaving him heavily in debt and profoundly affecting his attitude to the performance of his music in Paris.
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