Weird Love Tales
Offenbach's 'The Tales of Hoffmann' -
'... a cast, orchestra, conductor and stage team fully up to tackling a very demanding project.'
E T A Hoffmann was the oddest mixture. Musician enough to write a successful opera about the water-spirit
Undine, to change his third name to Amadeus in honour of Mozart, he was yet ugly and unprepossessing in
person, much given to alcohol. At the same time he managed from 1814 to be greatly respected as a jurist in
Berlin. The brew is indeed heady, and Offenbach had the fantastic inspiration to write a final work with
Hoffmann as thwarted hero (if that's the word) of his own weird love tales. There is no doubt that in this
Bilbao production Hoffmann is mostly befuddled, victim of his hectic imagination, staggering round the stage
in a stupor more often than opportunity strictly demands.
Aquiles Machado as Hoffmann. DVD screenshot © 2006 Opus Arte/ABAO
Copyright © 13 June 2007
Robert Anderson, London UK