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Habanera -L'amour est un oiseau rebelle (Si Je t'Aime) - from Carmen Bizet Help Opus Details
For feedback and questions, please contact Victor Gomersall.
Bizet's most well-known opera, Carmen, was first performed at the Opera Comique in Paris in 1875. The critics did not like it, they said it was too risqé, and Carmen's tragic death on stage too realistic for a comic opera house. However, the public did like it. It was much more successful abroad than in France for many decades. Sadly Bizet died 3 months after its first staging, and was unable to bask in the glory of this opera's huge success the world over.

Bizet's genius is displayed in the brilliant orchestration, and in this habanera. On stage, Carmen does a very sexy dance, whilst teasing Don José that she may love him, or she may not, but, if she does love him, he'd better watch out!

Habanera is Spanish, meaning "from Havana", which is the capital of Cuba. It is a Cuban dance in 2/4, with its characteristic rhythmic pattern consisting of a dotted quaver and a semiquaver, followed by two quavers. It became popular in Spain, and also with many French composers who were infatuated with all things Spanish in the 19th century. It later evoved into the tango in Argentina. This is Bizet's contribution to the Habaneras of that era.
Category: Opera Orchestra Featuring Voice Romantic Period
Time Signature 2 /4 Key Signature   F Major also featuring ChoirVoices Play MP3 using player below.

1    This dramatic descending chromatic passage on the violins, against a habanera rhythmic figure on the cellos, really expresses Carmen's fiery nature well.

2    This new tune now adopts the characteristic habanera rhythm from the cello part, but appears in a major key, at once sounding happier for a while.
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