OFFENBACH, J.: Belle Helene (La) (Sung in German) (Studio Production, 1974)


 

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- (Disc 1)
La belle Helene (Sung in German)

Date of Production: 1974
Playing Time: 01:50:29
Catalogue Number: A05004529
UPC:

Just as in Orpheus in the Underworld, this opera-travesty by Jacques Offenbach (1819-1880) also uses an ancient Greek subject as a means of caricaturing contemporary social and political issues. The main target of Offenbach's barbs are the unscrupulousness and moral decline of France's "Second Empire". The action of the ancient saga of gods and heroes is stripped of its loftiness and parodistically reduced to an ironic display of very human motivations, weaknesses and excesses. "The ambivalence of Offenbach's genius emerges here more clearly than in any other of his works - a genius that masters with the same skillfullness all the facets of musical expression: emotion and intellect, romance and parody." (Bernard Grun, Cultural History of the Operetta)

Part 1


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