Shows D

When Margot has gone, Jeanne receives a surprise visit from the Comte Dubarry. He pretends that he wishes to buy a painting, but he takes every chance to refer pointedly to all the material things she is missing in sharing her life with her penniless lover. She swears her faithfulness to Rene but, when he returns, she conceals Dubarry's visit When Rene learns of the aristocratic visitor from a neighbour, and discovers a purse left by the Count to tempt Jeanne, he leaps to the conclusion that she is deceiving him, and unceremoniously throws her out of the studio. Scene 4 At a stag party at the Comte Dubarry's palace, the Marquis de Brissac is gossiping about the appearance of a new cabaret artist called Marion Raneon at the night club of the Verrares sisters. “Cherchez la femme!” the Count declares, and they promptly decide to give the place a visit, agreeing that there is nothing more enchanting than the sight of a lady's feet, her smiles and her eyes. Scene 5 At the night club all is gaiety and revelry. The new cabaret artist, who has made such a hit with her dancing and songs, then appears to do her turn and Brissac and Dubarry recognise her immediately as Jeanne. The men clamour for her attention, but she remains cool towards them. Brissac is somewhat embarrassed when Margot appears, but he quickly recovers his composure and agrees to go for a stroll with her. Meanwhile Jeanne has been gambling with money borrowed from a gentleman called Radix de Saint-Foix and has managed to lose it all. Saint-Foix demands repayment in one form or another, but Jeanne is adamant. “ give my heart only to the one man to whom I can mean everything,' she declares. Suddenly Dubarry appears on the scene and, claiming that Jeanne is his wife, agrees to pay her debts. The stunned Jeanne leaves the club on the arm of the Count, as he makes his first declarations of love. Scene 6 Jeanne is now living in the house of the Comte Dubarry, who has arranged for her to go through a marriage ceremony with his brother so that he may pass her off in society as the Comtesse Dubarry. An opportunity to launch her society career comes with an invitation to a soirée at the palace of the Princesse de Luxembourg. Scene 7 At the salon of the Princesse de Luxembourg, Choiseul, Soubize and Lauzun discuss once more the burning question of a successor to Madame Pompadour. Choiseul continues to press his sister's claims, but he is aware that efforts have been made in favour of Jeanne. The King has been shown a portrait of her, painted by Rene. Jeanne enters apprehensively, aware that all eyes are on her, but it is soon clear that she is a great success. Brissac and Margot are also at the party, continuing their dizzy romance, but Jeanne is thoroughly taken aback when she meets Rene and they recall with nostalgic happiness their days together. Jeanne is concerned at the way she is becoming a pawn in political intrigue, and she and Rene soon decide to get back together again. Rene tells her that he will have a carriage waiting for her outside as soon as he can but, before she can depart, the Comte Dubarry takes her aside to tell her that the King has approved of her portrait. While Rene waits with his carriage, Jeanne is faced with the biggest choice of her life. Finally, she steps not into Rene's carriage but, aided by the King's chamberlain Lebell, into one taking her to the King at Versailles. Scene 8 In a salon of the Palace of Versailles the King's chamberlain prepares Jeanne for her meeting with the King and gives her some tips on Court etiquette. When finally she meets the King, and he asks her what she thinks about love, she simply repeats her philosophy of giving herself only to the man to whom she can be the most important thing in his life. The King is well satisfied with her answer, and the Duc de Choiseul is deputed to have the new mistress installed in her splendid residence in the Petit Trianon. Scene 9 In the park of the Trianon the people are gathering for a party for the King's birthday. When Jeanne is congratulated upon her new found success, she responds with the assurance that whatever she begins in life she completes. Margot and Brissac, who get everywhere, are there too and, since Brissac has finally asked her to marry him, Margot is contemplating nostalgically the military uniform that she wore in the acting career