Opera in three acts, with prologue and epilogue, in French, with Hungarian and English surtitles
What makes the stories of E. T. A. Hoffmann so memorable is the spectacular combination of an unbridled imagination and actual social situations. In his unfinished final work, Offenbach departs from the style of his hilariously satirical operettas, which are full of the witty and mocking social criticism of his era. Naturally, this work is not devoid of humour either, but the poet’s romantic adventures are dominated by dark, sometimes fateful, chromatic nuances. Accompanying Hoffmann throughout his search for the absolute ideal of femininity and bringing him misery are four wicked characters, forcing him to constantly confront death even in his state of amorous intoxication. With these stories constituted of both the real world and a hair-raising imaginary one, the composer leads his listeners into a universe where the border between dreams and reality is easily blurred.