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Sheet Music: Minuet

TitleMinuet
from Orpheus in the Underworld
Alternate titlesLa la la. Le menuet n'est vraiment si charmant
ComposerJacques Offenbach (1819–1880)
InstrumentationFlute and Piano
KeyG major
RangeE4–B5
Time signature3/4
Tempo96 BPM
Performance time1:55
Difficulty levelintermediate
Download printable scorePDF Sheet Music (107 kB) (preview)
Download audio tracksMIDI (9 kB) (change tempo) MP3 (1.4 MB)
Play-along accompanimentMIDI (7 kB) (change tempo) MP3 (1.4 MB)
Date added2009-11-21
Last updated2009-11-21
CategoriesDance tunes, Opera excerpts, Romantic

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Saturday 21 November 2009

Tune of the Day: Minuet

from Offenbach's opera “Orpheus in the Underworld”

First performed in 1858, Orphée aux enfers is said to be the first classical full-length operetta. Offenbach's earlier operettas were small-scale one-act works, since the law in France did not allow certain genres of full-length works. Orpheus was not only longer, but more musically adventurous than Offenbach's earlier pieces.

This minuet is taken from Act II. An extravagant party is in full swing in Hell, and the gods are singing the praises of wine. Eurydice sneaks in disguised as a bacchante (a follower of Bacchus, the god of wine), but Jupiter's plan to sneak out with her is interrupted by calls for a dance. Unfortunately, Jupiter can only dance minuets which everyone else finds boring. Things liven up, though, as the most famous number in the operetta, the Galop Infernal (best known as the music of the Can-can) starts, and everyone throws himself into it with wild abandon.

Other Movements from the same Work

Galop infernal Flute solo
Overture Flute solo