Charpentier Actéon, H. 481

Actéon (Actaeon), H 481 is a Pastorale in the form of a miniature tragédie en musique in six scenes by Marc-Antoine Charpentier, based on a Greek myth. Although the patron and the place of performance remain unknown, the date can be determined with considerable accuracy: 1684. Later it was revised to change the title role from an haute-contre to a soprano, and was renamed Actéon changé en biche. The author of the French libretto is unknown, however the plot is based on a story in Ovid's Metamorphoses: the hunter Actaeon accidentally discovers the goddess Diana bathing with her attendants. He tries to hide himself, but is discovered, and Diane in anger turns him into a stag, and he is pursued and torn apart by his own hounds. This story is the same one recounted in the aria "Oft she visits this lone mountain" from Purcell's Dido and Aeneas, first performed in 1689.
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