At the beginning of Act II Ariadne awakens and, finding herself alone, climbs to the summit of the rocks. Looking seaward, she discerns the receding sail of Theseus’ galley. Terrified, she attempts to throw herself into the sea, but falls instead into the embrace of Bacchus. Together they resume their dream dance. Their lips unite in a kiss which releases a Dionysiac enchantment, whereupon the island comes to life, and vine-wreathed fauns and maenads spring from among the rocks, crowding the scene. Two of them offer a golden goblet filled with grape juice to Ariadne. She drinks and, intoxicated, dances with mounting frenzy, first alone, then with Bacchus. The entire troop of followers joins in a Bacchanalia, while the god conducts Ariadne to the highest pinnacle and crowns her with a diadem of stars ravished from the heavenly constellations.…


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