Cendrillon Teaching Guide

Music Key Stage 4

Lesson plan

Perceptions of reality

  • Start by playing the class ‘Ah! Douce enfant’as an introduction.
  • Ask pupils to write a short description of the character they imagine (describing musical devices used to achieve this, employing specific musical terms).
  • Send the class into groups and ask each to take a different character from Cinderella and to compose a short piece of music on their instruments to represent them.


Main activity

Using a simple version of the story, sew the character tunes together to make a complete piece representing the story. If advanced, note where the characters speak and ask groups to find a way of combining their music.


  • Ask pupils to listen to ‘Toi qui m’es apparue’ (lovers’ duet) from the opera. Point out that both lovers use female voices, even the Prince. Ask pupils to write a short piece of prose describing how the music represents the lovers and what effect is achieved by having two women sing. Is the composer trying to evoke a specific world or reality? Are they trying to make a point?
  • This can be extended to a further project on moments in music when women have played men and vice versa. What is the intention of this is? What impact does it have on the dramatic world created?

Image creditsCinderella (Cendrillon), Tour 2018, photos by Richard Hubert Smith

You might also like

Cendrillon Teaching Resources
Teaching resources
Cendrillon teaching guide
Discover opera and be part of extraordinary artistic experie…
Glyndebourne Shop
Our online shop offers a great selection of exclusive and locally sourced products. Every purchase supports our work.
Become a Member
Enjoy priority booking for the Festival. Find out how you can join as an Associate Member
Support us
Glyndebourne is a charity and the Festival receives no public subsidy. We rely on generous supporters who are passionate about opera.