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date: 08 August 2020

Olimpiade, L’ (libretto by Metastasio) (‘The Olympiad’)locked

  • Don Neville

Extract

(‘The Olympiad’)

Libretto by Pietro Metastasio, first set by Antonio Caldara (1733, Vienna).

Megacle [Megacles] arrives in Sicyon just in time to enter the Olympic Games under the name of Licida [Lycidas], a friend who once saved his life. Unknown to Megacles, Lycidas is in love with Aristea [Aristaea], whose hand is to be offered to the winner of the games by her father, King Clistene [Cleisthenes]. Lycidas, once betrothed to Princess Argene of Crete, is unaware that Megacles and Aristaea already love each other, and he subsequently tells his friend of the prize. Aristaea and Megacles greet each other fondly, but Megacles now feels bound by his promise to compete as Lycidas. Meanwhile Argene arrives in Olympia disguised as a shepherdess, to win back Lycidas.

Megacles wins the games, confesses the truth to Aristaea and departs, broken-hearted. When Lycidas comes to claim her, Aristaea reproaches him, as does the disguised Argene, much to his dismay. Aminta [Amyntas], tutor to Lycidas, reports that Megacles has drowned himself, and King Cleisthenes, apprised of the deception, banishes Lycidas....

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