Princess Ida


   

You are here: Archive Home > Princess Ida > Web Opera > Act II

No. 20: FINALE ACT II
"Oh joy! our chief is saved"


Women.
Oh joy! our chief is saved
And by Hillarion's hand;
The torrent fierce he braved,
And brought her safe to land!
For his intrusion we must own
This doughty deed may well atone!

Princess.
Stand forth ye three,
Whoe'er ye be,
And hearken to our stern decree!

Hilarion, Cyril & Florian.
Have mercy, O Lady – disregard your oaths!

Princess.
I know not mercy, men in women's clothes!
The man whose sacrilegious eyes
Invade our strict seclusion, dies.
Arrest these coarse intruding spies!

They are arrested by the 'Daughters of the Plough'.

Women.
Have mercy, O Lady, – disregard your oaths.

Princess.
I know not mercy, men in women's clothes!

Cyril & Florian are bound.

Hilarion.
Whom thou has chained must wear his chain,
Thou canst not set him free,
He wrestles with his bonds in vain
Who lives by loving thee!
If heart of stone for heart of fire,
Be all thou hast to give,
If dead to my heart's desire,
Why should I wish to live?

Cyril, Florian & Women.
Have mercy, O Lady.

Hilarion.
No word of thine – no stern command
Can teach my heart to rove,
Then rather perish by thy hand,
Than live without thy love!
A loveless life apart from thee
Were hopeless slavery,
Were hopeless slavery.

Hilarion. Women.
If kindly death will set me free,
Why should I fear to die?
 
  Have mercy!
If kindly death  
  Have mercy!
Will set me free,
If kindly death will set me free,
Why should I fear,
Why should I fear to die?
 

He is bound by two of the attendants, the three gentlemen are marched off. Enter Melissa.

Melissa.
Madam, without the castle walls
An armèd band
Demand admittance to our halls
For Hildebrand!
All.
Oh, horror!
Princess.
Deny them!
We will defy them!
All.
Too late – too late!
The castle gate
Is battered by them!

The gate yields. Soldiers rush in. Arac, Guron, and Scynthius are with them, but with their hands handcuffed.

Soldiers.
Walls and fences scaling,
Promptly we appear;
Walls are unavailing,
We have entered here.
Female execration
Stifle if you're wise.
Stop your lamentation,
Dry your pretty, pretty eyes!

Women.
Rend the air with wailing,
Shed the shameful tear!
Man has entered here!
Walls are unavailing!

Women. Soldiers.
Rend the air with    Walls and fences scaling,
  Promptly we appear;
   wailing Walls are unavailing,
  We have entered here.
Shed the    Female execration
   shameful tear! Stifle if you're wise.
Man has    Stop your lamentation,
   entered here! Dry your pretty eyes!
Walls are una-   Oh, stop your lamentation,
  vailing, Dry your pretty, pretty eyes!
Man Female execration
has Stifle if you're wise.
entered Stop your lamentation,
here! Dry your pretty eyes!

Enter Hildebrand.

Princess.
Audacious tyrant, do you dare
To beard a maiden in her lair?
Hildebrand.
Since you inquire,
We've no desire
To beard a maiden here, or anywhere!
Soldiers.

No, no. We've no desire
To beard a maiden here or anywhere!
No, no, no, no!


Rutland Barrington as King Hildebrand in the original production.
1884 Production
Hildebrand.
Some years ago,
No doubt you know
(And if you don't I'll tell you so)
You gave your troth
Upon your oath
To Hilarion my son.
A vow you make
You must not break,
(If you think you may, it's a great mistake),
For a bride's a bride
Though the knot were tied
At the early age of one!
A vow you make
You must not break,
(If you think you may, it's a great mistake),
For a bride's a bride
Though the knot were tied
At the early age of one!
And I'm a peppery kind of King,
Who's indisposed for parleying
To fit the wit of a bit of chit,
And that's the long and the short of it!
Soldiers.
For he's a peppery kind of King,
Who's indisposed for parleying
To fit the wit of a bit of chit,
And that's the long and the short of it!
Hildebrand.
If you decide
To pocket your pride
And let Hilarion claim his bride,
Why, well and good,
It's understood
We'll let bygones go by –
But if you choose
To sulk in the blues
I'll make the whole of you shake in your shoes.
I'll storm your walls,
And level your halls,
In the winking of an eye!
But if you choose
To sulk in the blues
I'll make the whole of you shake in your shoes.
I'll storm your walls,
And level your halls,
In the winking of an eye!
For I'm a peppery Potentate,
Who's little inclined his claim to bate,
To fit the wit of a bit of a chit,
And that's the long and the short of it!
Soldiers.
For he's a peppery Potentate,
Who's little inclined his claim to bate,
To fit the wit of a bit of chit,
And that's the long and the short of it!
Barbara Lilley as Princess Ida & Kenneth Sandford as King Hildebrand, 1977
1977 Production
1961 Production
Arac, Guron & Scynthius.
We may remark, though nothing can
Dismay us,
That if you thwart this gentleman,
He'll slay us.
We don't fear death, of course – we're taught
To shame it;
But still upon the whole we thought
We'd name it.
Scynthius.
Yes!
Guron.
Yes!
Arac.
Yes!
All.
Better perhaps to name it.

Arac, Guron & Scynthius.

Our interests we would not press
With chatter,
Three hulking brothers more or less
Don't matter;
If you'd pooh-pooh this monarch's plan
Pooh-pooh it,
But when he says he'll hang a man,
He'll do it.

Scynthius.
Yes!
Guron.
Yes!
Arac.
Yes!
All.
Devil doubt he'll do it.

Princess.
Be reassured, nor fear his anger blind,
His menaces are idle as the wind.
He dares not kill you – vengeance lurks behind!

Arac, Guron & Scynthius.
We rather think he dares, but never, never mind!

Hildebrand. Arac, Guron & Scynthius.
I rather think I dare, but never, never mind! No! no! no! Never, never mind!
Enough of parley, as a special boon, No! no! Never, never mind!
We give you till tomorrow afternoon;  
  No! no! Never, never mind!
Release Hilarion, then, and be his bride
Or you'll incur the guilt of fratricide!
 

Princess.
To yield at once to such a foe
With shame were rife;
So quick! away with him, although
He sav'd my life!
That he is fair, and strong, and tall
Is very evident to all,
Yet I will die,
Yet I will die, before I call
Myself his wife!
1954 revival with Victoria Sladen as the Princess
Click on picture to enlarge

Princess. Others.
  Oh, yield at once, 'twere better so,
Than risk a strife!
And let the Prince Hilarion go –
He saved thy life!
That he is fair, and strong, and tall Hilarion's fair, and strong, and tall –
Is very evident to all, A worse misfortune might befall –
Yet I will die, will die before I call It's not so dreadful after all,
Myself his wife! To be his wife!

Princess.
Though I am but a girl,
Defiance thus I hurl,
Our banners all
On outer wall
We fearlessly unfurl.

All.
Though she is but a girl,
Defiance thus to hurl,
Our banners all
On outer wall
We fearlessly unfurl.

Women. Men.
  Their banners all,
Our banners all,  
  On outer wall,
On outer wall,  
We fearlessly unfurl. They fearlessly unfurl.

Princess. Others.
To yield at once to such a foe
With shame we're rife;
Oh, yield at once,
'Twere better so,

So quick! away with him, although
He sav'd my life!

Oh, yield,
Oh, yield at once!
That he is fair, and strong, and tall Hilarion's fair, and strong, and tall –
Yet I will die, will die before I call It's not so dreadful after all,
Myself his wife! To be his wife!

Women. Men.
Defiance! Their banners all,
Defiance! On outer wall,
Defiance thus we hurl! They fearlessly, fearlessly unfurl.
Defiance! Their banners all,
Defiance! On outer wall,
Defiance! They fearlessly unfurl.
Defiance! Their banners
Defiance! They fearlessly unfurl.
Defiance! Defiance!
Defiance! Defiance!

The Princess stands, surrounded by girls kneeling. Hildebrand and soldiers stand on built rocks at back and sides of stage. Picture.

END OF ACT II

Previous Page Previous Song Opera Home Page Top of Page Next Song Next Page

Archive Home  |  Princess Ida

Page Created 10 February, 2006