Synopsis

Jules Massenet

Synopsis

France, early 18th century. Lescaut meets his young cousin Manon in Amiens, from where he is to escort her to a convent. While alone, she is approached by Guillot de Morfontaine, a government minister, and De Brétigny, a nobleman. Lescaut sends them away but, alone again, Manon meets the Chevalier des Grieux. The couple fall in love immediately and elope to Paris in Guillot's coach. Living together in Paris, they are visited by Lescaut and a disguised De Brétigny. Manon learns that Des Grieux is to be abducted that evening and is offered the opportunity to become the nobleman's mistress. She accepts, and Des Grieux is later taken away. Manon is enjoying her wealth and fame when she hears that Des Grieux is about to become a priest. She goes to him and they are reconciled. Manon persuades Des Grieux to gamble. He wins, prompting Morfontaine to accuse him of cheating and have the couple arrested. Charges are dropped against Des Grieux but Manon is to be deported as a prostitute. En the road to Le Havre, Des Grieux tries to persuade Manon to escape with him, but she dies in his arms.