The Ballad of Baby Doe
The Ballad of Baby Doe has become one of the most popular American operas of the modern day. The story of the opera is drawn from the history of the American West, and its principal characters are people who lived in Colorado more than a century ago. The score emphasizes a period-piece atmosphere and is filled with music in the popular style of its time—waltzes, marches, parlor songs, rowdy tunes to suggest the flavor of a mining town and, later, boisterous ones for a political campaign. It is above all a singers’ piece. The well-crafted melodies, dramatic tension created by the love triangle, and the spectacle of production numbers make for a compelling, entertaining, and truly American opera. Sung in English.