Enhance Your Experience
Music, Reading & Resources
Opera Parallèle presents
La Belle et la Bête
by Philip Glass
Libretto by the Composer
based on the film by Jean Cocteau
These resources are to enhance your experience of La Belle et la Bête. Different versions of the fairy tale exist across different cultures, but the version best known in western traditions was first written in 1740 as a comment on the place of women in European society. Since then, the magical tale of a woman who promises herself as bride to the monster has inspired a diverse range of creators.
Poetry & Readings
Cast & Creative Team Interviews
Source Material – Film
Jean Cocteau worked across almost every artistic discipline, exploring writing, painting and drawing, theatre and film, linking disparate forms of art making in explorations of myth, contemporary life, dream and sexual identity.
Explore the original trailer
In his own words - from the Edinburgh International Festival
Source Material – ORIGINAL STORY
The Women behind Beauty and the Beast
- Click to read more about the first iterations of the now classic tale.
Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve
- Click to read an original version from 1740.
Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont
- Click to read the adapted version from 1756.
A Tale as Old as Time:
Exploring Queer History and Identity Through Beauty and the Beast
From ‘the first gay character’ in a Disney movie in 2017 to Jean Cocteau’s relationship with his leading man Jean Marais (pictured right) in 1946 to Howard Ashman writing his timeless songs while dying of AIDS in the 90’s, Beauty & the Beast has a deep Queer history. Using the classic tale as a leaping point, Opera Parallèle and The Academy SF bring together an exciting and surprising panel to explore the themes of identity and perceptions of beauty in the LGBTQ+ community and beyond.
Date: June 29, 2022, 6:30pm – 8pm
Venue: The Academy SF, 2166 Market St, San Francisco
Moderator: Michael ‘Mojo’ Mohammed
Panellists: Dr. Ellie Zara Ley, Hadleigh Adams – Baritone,Prof. Nicholas L. Baham, III , Ph.D.
Watch the full conversation here:
Jean Cocteau & Jean Marais on the set of La Belle et la Bête
READINGS on IDENTITY & Queer History
- The Touching Tribute Behind Disney’s First Openly Gay Character: How the tragic death of a pioneering gay artist may have shaped the story of the new Beauty and the Beast
OTHER WORKS inspired by la belle et la bête
Disney's Beauty & the Beast - Olney Theatre Center
'La Fauvette' from 'Zémire et Azor' - Pacific MusicWorks
Bruce Wells' Beauty & the Beast - Pacific Northwest Ballet
TORO: Beauty & the Bull by Carlos Pons Guerra for DeNada Dance Theatre
The Tiger's Bride
by Angela Carter
- Click to listen to the book
- or to read more.
Beauty & the Beast
by H. Chuku Lee, Illustrations by Pat Cummings
- A remarkable retelling of Beauty and the Beast flavored by the art, architecture, and culture of West Africa Click to learn more.