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L' Invitation à la valse

drame/play, pub:1857

Prose comedy in one act.


From A Bibliography of Alexandre Dumas père by Frank Wild Reed:
     A one-act comedy in prose.
     Audebrand, and following him Lecomte, credit Paul Meurice with collaborating in this, but no proof is offered. If it is so, at least his share was small, as so often in these cases. Furthermore, Dumas makes the statement, in "Les Courses d'Epsom" ("Causeries," Vol. II.), that he devoted a dull Sunday in London to the composition of this piece, but that at the seventh or eighth scene he was interrupted. This was early in 1857, in which year he went to England to see the elections.
     It is a very light, but thoroughly witty and amusing little piece. Glinel saw the original MS., and notes that it bore the following inscriptions in Dumas' handwriting : At the commencement : "Fait pour ma chère petite enfant Isabelle, à laquelle ce manuscrit appartient. 10 avril 1857." ("Composed for my dear little child Isabelle, to whom this MS. belongs. April 10 1857.") Then, on the last page: "Non corrigé et tel qu'il doit être offert à un bibliophile, pour lequel les fautes sont des preuves d'authenticité. Alex. Dumas." ("Not corrected, and in such state as it must be offered to a bibliophile, to whom faults are proofs of authenticity. Alex. Dumas.") (1)
     (1) This was Isabelle Constant the actress. The play was also staged 47 times at the Théâtre Français in 1857-58.
     It is to be noted that in the original issue of the "Causerie" mentioned above, in "Le Monte-Cristo," Dumas does not specify the play referred to, though he does in the article included in the "Causeries."
     First performed at the Gymnase Dramatique Theatre on the 3rd of August, 1857.
     Original edition : Paris, Beck, 12mo., 1857.
     Now found in Vol. XIII. of the 15 Vol. edition, and in Vol. XXI. of that in 25 Vols., by Calmann-Lévy.

         References :—
     Dumas: "Causeries," Vol. II., "Courses d'Epsom."
     Audebrand: "A, Dumas à la Maison d'Or," page 306.
     Glinel: "A. Dumas et Son Œuvre," pp. 438-39.
     Parran: "Bibliographie d'Alex. Dumas," page 35.

         English Adaptation :—
     "Childhood's Dreams," by Sir C. L. Young; London, Lacy's Acting Plays, 1881.

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