Prince Ramiro is looking for a beautiful and virtuous wife.
Disguised as a servant, he arrives at the house of Magnifico, where
he meets the vain daughters Clorinda and Tisbe and their
half-sister Cenerentola, a young and big-hearted girl who is forced
to work as a servant for the family. Helped by Alidoro, Ramiro’s
tutor, Cenerentola goes to the Prince’s ball incognito. Disguised
as the Prince, Dandini is courted by the two stepsisters, while
Cenerentola wins the heart of the real Prince. On leaving the
party, she says goodbye to him, giving him one of a matching pair
of bracelets, with the hope he recognises her humble station but
still truly loves her. In the end, Ramiro discovers that the girl
who is a servant in Magnifico’s house is Cenerentola and marries
Prince Ramiro organises a ball where he will choose his future wife
from among the attendees. Alidoro, a philosopher and the Prince’s
tutor goes to Baron Magnifico’s mansion disguised as a beggar. He
tries to get into the house to find out if any of Baron Magnifico’s
daughters fits the description of a kind-hearted, upright girl that
he wants for Don Ramiro. He knocks on the door to ask for alms. He
finds himself before Clorinda and Tisbe, Don Magnifico’s daughters,
who are two idle girls who spend the day looking at themselves in
the mirror and preening themselves in their hunt for a rich
husband, while Angelina, the Baron’s stepdaughter, also called
Cenerentola (Cinderella), works endlessly for her family as if she
were a maid. She is the only one who deigns to offer him some
coffee and bread.
A royal cortege arrives to invite the family to the ball. The
Prince, disguised as a servant, watching the behaviour of Clorinda
and Tisbe. When he suddenly sees Cenerentola, they fall in love at
first sight. Dandini, Don Ramiro’s waiter, who is disguised as the
Prince, goes to the Baron’s mansion to meet his daughters
personally. Cenerentola wants to go to the ball but the Baron says
she is just the maid. They all leave with Dandini, except
Cenerentola. Alidoro comforts her and invites her to the ball. The
only thing she has to do is conceal her identity.
Don Ramiro’s Palace. Dandini, still pretending to be the Prince,
receives the guests. Tisbe and Clorinda flirt with him. A
mysterious lady concealed by a veil arrives. When she reveals her
face, Don Magnifico and his daughters do not take long to notice a
certain similarity to Cenerentola. Dandini calls for dinner and
that he will choose his wife after the dance.
The mysterious lady has captivated everyone during the dinner.
Dandini tries to court Cenerentola. She discreetly rejects him and
confesses that she is really in love with his servant. Don Ramiro,
who is nearby and listening, is moved when he hears her words and
moves over to her. But Cenerentola has to leave. Before doing so,
she leaves him a bracelet, matching the one she is wearing on her
right arm. He will have to find her and, if he still loves her when
he sees her in tatters and rags, dirty from soot, she will be his.
Dandini bids all the guests farewell and he tells Don Magnifico
that he is not really the prince, but just a simple servant. Don
Magnifico, who is infuriated to be the victim of this joke, leaves
followed by his daughters. Once in their Mansion, they find
Cenerentola by the fireplace, wearing her usual clothes.
Outside the house, in the middle of a storm, a carriage topples
over. The passengers knock on the door to ask for help. It is Don
Dandini and Don Ramiro. The Baron bends over backwards for Don
Ramiro. He asks Cenerentola to bring a chair for the Prince. When
she offers Dandini the chair, Don Magnifico tells her the prince is
the other one, the one she thinks is the servant. The girl blushes.
Don Ramiro sees the bracelet that Cenerentola is wearing on her arm
and is overwhelmed by joy to see that she is the young lady he was
looking for. Don Ramiro asks Cenerentola to marry him and warns Don
Magnifico that he will be punished for having been cruel to the
young girl. In spite of everything, she begs the Prince to pardon
her family, and the wedding happily takes place.