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Apr 18 2020

Meyerbeer’s work on L’Étoile du nord and Le Pardon de Ploërmel caused further delay, but Meyerbeer returned to the libretto in September 1855. He had intended the role of Sélika for the soprano Sophie Cruvelli, but Cruvelli’s abrupt retirement from the public stage in January 1856 interrupted his plans. He began composing music for the Council Scene of Act 1 in Nice (December 1857 – April 1858). He worked on the opera almost continuously from March 1860 until a few days before his death. Scribe died on 20 February 1861, after which Charlotte Birch-Pfeiffer provided German revisions which were translated into French by Joseph Duesberg. Meyerbeer himself revised Sélika’s death scene in November and December 1863. He died on 2 May, one day after completing the copying of the full score.