Ether Game

Offenbach: “Student Chorus” Tales of Hoffman

Can you guess this piece? Here’s a hint: beware of poets bearing beverages…

The student in opera has a long and prolific history of drinking, falling in love, and drinking some more.

Occasionally the Student character might also start a revolution or die of something consumptive. With all this going on, who has time to study?

At least the students in Offenbach’s “Tales of Hoffmann” appreciate a good night at the opera (followed, of course, by a mad dash to the tavern).

There, the students are held in thrall by the imagination of their poet friend Hoffmann.

The stories he tells them are spun into the plot of the opera itself.

The real-life E.T.A. Hoffmann, however, probably had little time to hang out with drunken college students, as across his career he held the positions of lawyer, judge, composer, theater director, and art critic.

Music Heard On This Episode

Jacques Offenbach (1819-1890): Student Chorus
Jeffery Tate/Radio Choir and Dresden State Orchestra — Offenbach - Les contes d'Hoffmann (Phillips, 1992)
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album cover
Jacques Offenbach (1819-1890): Student Chorus
Jeffery Tate/Radio Choir and Dresden State Orchestra — Offenbach - Les contes d'Hoffmann (Phillips, 1992)
Buy from Amazon »
album cover

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