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Queen Elvira of Leon: Maureen Springer
Donna Carmen: Angela O'Connor
The Duchess of Calatrava: Statia Keyes
Don Pedro: James G. Cuthbert
Don Florio: James Browne
Don Sallust: Michael Hanlon
Louisa: Nellie Walsh
Pablo: Seamus Roche
Don Alvaro: Brendan Nolan
Manuel: Murray Dickie


ConductorDermot O'Hara
ProducerPowell Lloyd
DirectorGerard Donovan
Set Constructed byDom Sinnott
Set painted byMiss Mai McElroy
Assistant Set ConstructorJohn Scanlon
Costume DesignMrs. S. Whelan
makeup and hair styles bySeamus
Prima BallerinaJoan Denise Moriarty
Music PreparationMrs. N.J. Hore
Music PreparationMiss Nora O'Leary
Chorus MasterMrs N J Hore
MiscellaneousLibrarian: Mr. Patrick Parle. Asst Librarian: Mr. James Gaynor

The Plot

Place: Spain

Time: The Middle Ages

The King of Castille apparently wants Elvira, Queen of León, to marry his brother, Don Sebastian, and, because it has been rumoured that Sebastian will enter her kingdom in disguise, she has in turn disguised herself as a peasant girl (and her attendant, Carmen, is disguised as a peasant boy) in order to see what he is like.

Act 1

A rural scene in front of an inn

Peasants, dancing and singing, invite Elvira and Carmen to join their dance. They decline, but Elvira sings a scherzo ("Yes, I'll obey you"). The innkeeper insults them, but the muleteer Manuel (an aristocrat in disguise) arrives to protect them ("I am a simple muleteer"). Elvira guesses that he is Don Sebastian and agrees to be escorted by him. They leave.
Don Pedro, who plans, together with his accomplices, to usurp Elvira's throne, now appears. Their trio turns into a bacchanal ("Wine, wine, the magician thou art"). Elvira, still in disguise, reappears, and the conspirators, noticing that she closely resembles the Queen, persuade her to impersonate her real self. Knowing that "Manuel" will follow her, she agrees to leave with them, and her rondo ("Oh, were I the Queen of Spain") leads into a concerted finale.

Act 2

The throne-room in Elvira's palace

Don Pedro's followers sing the chorus "The Queen in the palace". Pedro plans to capture the Queen and send her to a convent (substituting the peasant girl) if she will not marry him. He is, however, uncertain whether his plot will work ("Though fortune darkly o'er me frowns"). They all leave, and Elvira and her attendants arrive. She sings the ballad "Of girlhood's happy days I dream" (also known as "The Convent Cell"). Manuel is now granted an audience with the Queen. He tells her of his meeting with the peasant girl and boy, and of his belief that they were the Queen and Carmen. The ladies ridicule him (Trio: "I'm not the Queen, ha ha!"). He tells Elvira of Don Pedro's plan, and she arranges for the Duchess of Calatrava, heavily veiled, to impersonate her. The Duchess is duly carried off to a convent, but Pedro and Florio still have not located the peasant girl. Suddenly, she (Elvira in disguise again) appears, singing "I'm but a simple peasant maid". She vanishes, and the Queen, once again appearing as herself, declares, to general consternation, that she intends to marry the muleteer.

Act 3

Carmen sings "Though love's the greatest plague in life", followed by a duet with Don Florio. The couple agree to marry. The Queen and her attendants appear, and she sings "Oh joyous, happy day". Don Alvaro arrives to inform her that Don Sebastian is to be married. Elvira, realising that the muleteer Manuel is not Don Sebastian, is enraged, but his ballad "'Twas rank and fame that tempted thee" melts her heart, and she swears to be true to him. Don Pedro is delighted: if the Queen marries a commoner, he can force her to abdicate ("Hark, hark, methinks I hear").
In the Queen's throne-room, Manuel announces that he is King of Castille and will marry Elvira. Don Pedro has to beg for mercy, and Elvira's bravura aria ("Oh no! By fortune blessed"), concludes the opera to general rejoicing: she will now be the Rose of Castille as well as the Queen of León.

(Source: Wikipedia)

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