Musetta's Waltz - Scene and Lyrics

From Puccini's opera, La Boheme

Puccini’s Opera, La Boheme
Peter Wedd and Mary Plazas perform during the dress rehearsal of Francesco Zambello's new production of Puccini's much-loved opera La Boheme at the Royal Albert Hall February 25, 2004 in London. Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images

Scene of the Song
During Act II of Puccini's opera La Bohème, Musetta attempts to attract the attention of her ex Marcello to make him jealous of her relationship with the wealthy (yet old) government administrator, Alcindoro. As she grows tired of her current love, she sings the song "Quando me'n vo" - a.k.a. "Musetta's Waltz". During the aria, she complains of her tight shoe and Alcindoro runs to the shoemaker to fix the problem.

In the scene to follow, now that Alcindoro is out of the way, Marcello and Musetta end up in eachother's arms.

Italian Lyrics - "Quando me'n vo"
Quando me'n vò soletta per la via,
La gente sosta e mira
E la bellezza mia tutta ricerca in me,
ricerca in me
Da capo a pie' ...
Ed assaporo allor la bramosia
sottil che da gl'occhi traspira
e dai palesi vezzi intender sa
Alle occulte beltà.
Cosi l’effluvio del desio tutta m'aggira,
felice mi fa, felice me fa!
E tu che sai, che memori e ti struggi
Da me tanto rifuggi?
So ben:
le angoscie tue non le vuoi dir,
non le vuoi dir so ben
Ma ti senti morir!

English Lyrics - "When I Walk" or "Musetta's Waltz"
When I walk alone in the street
People stop and stare at me
And everyone looks at my beauty,
Looks at me,
From head to foot...
And then I relish the sly yearning
which escapes from their eyes
and which is able to perceive
my most hidden beauties.
Thus the scent of desire is all around me,
and it makes me happy, makes me happy!

And you who know, who remember and yearn
you shrink from me?
I know it very well:
you do not want to express your anguish,
I know so well that you do not want to express it
but you feel as if you are dying!

Lyrics are provided by Wikipedia under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".