A Comic Operetta in Three Acts from the original
by HECTOR CRENIEUX and LUDOVIC HALEVY
Music by JACQUES OFFENBACH
New Book and Lyrics by PHIL PARK
Music Adapted and Arranged by RONALD HANMER
by arrangement with Hal Leonard Australia Pty Ltd on behalf of Josef Weinberger LTD. London
Unlike the other composers, Offenbach gave the story a farcical twist. In his version Orpheus and Eurydice, though married to each other, are amicably living separate lives, each blissfully occupied with a new lover. Like Eurydice in the original Greek story, Offenbach’s heroine is fatally bitten by a snake but, rather than dying tragically, she willingly relocates to the Underworld to be with Pluto —the ruler of the Underworld—who in a mortal form had become her lover while she was alive. In Offenbach's version Orpheus acts to retrieve Eurydice much against his will. Both he and Eurydice are pleased when his attempt fails. Offenbach was equally irreverent in terms of music, pairing courtly minuets with high-kicking cancans and quoting satirically from Gluck’s earlier opera.