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Tom Jones (Philidor)

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Title: Tom Jones (Philidor)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: François-André Danican Philidor, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling, Philidor, Opéra-Comique, Opéra comique, The opera corpus, French opera, Comédie mêlée d'ariettes, List of opera genres
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Tom Jones (Philidor)

For the comic opera by Edward German, see Tom Jones (opera).
For other uses, see Tom Jones (disambiguation).

Template:Philidor operas

Tom Jones is a comédie mêlée d'ariettes, a kind of opéra comique, by the French composer François-André Danican Philidor which first appeared at the Comédie-Italienne, Paris, on 27 February 1765. Its French libretto, by Antoine-Alexandre-Henri Poisenet and Bertin Davesne, is loosely based on the novel by Henry Fielding.

The piece was initially a failure but Philidor had the libretto revised by Michel-Jean Sedaine and this new version, first performed on 30 January 1766, proved one of the most popular opéras comiques of the late 18th century. It was produced in a number of other countries, and translated into German, Swedish and Russian.


Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 27 February 1765
Monsieur Western bass Joseph Caillot
Madame Western, his sister mezzo-soprano Bérard
Sophie, his daughter soprano Desglands
Honora, her companion soprano Marie-Thérèse Laruette-Villette
Allworthy, their neighbour baritone Antoine Trial
Tom Jones, his ward tenor Jean-Baptiste Guignard, 'Clairval'
Blifil, Allworthy's nephew tenor Jean-Louis Laruette
Quaker Dowling spoken


François-André Danican Philidor: Tom Jones, Lausanne Opera & Le Sinfonietta de Lausanne

  • Conductor: Jean-Claude Malgoire
  • Principal singers: Sébastien Droy, Sophie Marin-Degor, Marc Barrard, Sibyl Zanganelli, Carine Séchehaye, Rodolphe Briand, Léonard Pezzino & Guillaume Michel
  • Recording date: staged in 2005; recorded on 17, 18 and 20 janvier, 2006
  • Label: Dynamic 33509 (DVD), CDS509 (CD)


  • Amadeus Almanac, accessed 17 November 2010
  • Rushton, Julian (1992), 'Tom Jones (i)' in The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, ed. Stanley Sadie (London) ISBN 0-333-73432-7
  • The Viking Opera Guide ed. Holden (1993)
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