The Cunning Little Vixen Leoš Janáček

Akt I

Beschreibung: In the forest, animals and insects dance and play. A Forester enters and settles down for a nap. A playful Vixen cub startles a frog, who then jumps on the Forester, waking him up. The Forester captures the Vixen and takes her home as a pet. The Vixen, now a young adult, suffers cruelty from the Forester’s children and unwanted amorous advances from his old dog. Tired of captivity, she dreams of freedom. She incites a feminist rebellion among the hens, slaughters them all as a distraction and manages to escape.

Akt II

Beschreibung: The liberated Vixen is back in the forest and commandeers a badger’s home. At an inn, the Forester, Schoolmaster and Parson drink. The Forester mocks the Schoolmaster over his infatuation with Terynka, a gypsy girl, so the Schoolmaster in turn taunts the Forester about his runaway Vixen, and he rushes out to find her. As the Schoolmaster and Parson stumble home from the inn, the Schoolmaster sees the Vixen and mistaking her for Terynka, confesses his love. The Forester arrives, spots the Vixen and fires at her, but she escapes unharmed. Later, the Vixen meets a charming male Fox. They fall in love, and the Vixen soon finds she is expecting cubs. The two get married.


Beschreibung: In the forest, a Poacher (who is now due to marry the Schoolmaster’s love Terynka) finds a dead hare, signalling that the Vixen is nearby. The Forester warns him off and sets a trap for the Vixen himself. The Vixen, the Fox and their brood of cubs emerge, find the trap and mock the Forester’s incompetence. The Poacher returns and manages to shoot and kill the Vixen. The Schoolmaster is upset to learn that Terynka will marry the Poacher, and wearing a new fox fur muff too. The Forester, however, accepts his growing old age. He returns to the spot in the forest where he first saw the Vixen. He falls asleep and dreams. A frog jumps on him – the grandson of the frog at the beginning of the story – reminding him of the wondrous cycle of nature.