Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 2.djvu/505

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plays of Sophocles Antigone, (Edipue Tyrannus, and (Edipus at Colonus as a trilogy.* Anti- gone was first performed at the New Palace, Potsdam, Oct. 28, 1841. On March 12, 1845, Mendelssohn informs His Majesty that the music to QSdipus at Colonos is finished and ready for performance, and that for OZdipus Tyrannus completely sketched, meaning no doubt in full score, as was usually the case with his ' sketches.' The first of the two was produced at Potsdam on Nov. i, 1845, and was published, before the end of 1851, as op. 93 (22 of the posthumous works). It contains an introduction and nine numbers. A full analysis of the work by Mr. G. A. Macfarren will be found in the earlier numbers of the Musical World for 1 854. OEdipus Tyrannus appears never to have come to per- formance, and the finished sketch of the music seems to have disappeared. [G.]

OESTEN, THEODOB, born at Berlin, Dec. 31, 1813, learned various instruments, both wind and string, from Politzki, Stadtmusicus of Fiir- Btenwald, a small town between Berlin and Frankfort-on-the-Oder. At nineteen he went to Berlin, and studied composition with Bobmer, Rungenhagen, Schneider, and A. W. Bach, but before this he had written a quantity of dance- music, variations, etc. He also learned the clarinet from Tanne, a Kammermusicus. He was soon in great request as a teacher, and in 1843 his P. F. rondo called ' Les premieres Violettes,' cleverly written in the sentimental taste of the day, had an enormous success, and was followed by a host of similar pieces, easy to play and with attractive titles, which ruled the market for many years. He had many more or less suc- cessful imitators, his own son Max among the number. Oesten died March 16, 1870. [F.G.]

OFFENBACH, JACQUES, born at Cologne, June 21, 1819, of Jewish parents; came to Paris as a youth, and in Nov. 1833, entered the cello class of Professor Vaslin at the Conserva- toire. He quitted in a year, without having dis- tinguished himself, or shown any taste for serious study. He then entered the orchestra of the Ope"ra Comique, where he played by the side of Seligmann, and doubtless picked up much of his knowledge. He first appears as the composer of some chansonettes to parodies of La Fontaine's poems. He then became conductor of the orchestra at the ' Theatre Fra^ais,' and composed the ' Chanson de Fortunio,' in Alfred de Musset's ' Chandelier ' (1848), a song which is certainly one of the best of his melodies. Henceforward he made use of every expedient to place himself before the public, giving concerts of a kind to excite public curiosity, and in various ways illustrating the saying that 'a grain of wit is better than a bushel of learning' (le savoir-faire vaut mieux que le savoir). His first piece, ' Pepito,' produced at the Ope"ra Comique Oct. 28, 1853, attracted little notice, but he followed it by a host of operettas, suited to small theatres, and careless audiences, and at last found his real field in

I tetter of Mailer In Mendelssohn's Brlefe, March 19, 1843.



��' Les deux Aveugles,' ' Le Violoneux,' and other musical trifles which he gave at the small theatre in the Champs Elyse"es. At length, in Dec. 1855, he took the 'Theatre Comte,' in the Passage Choiseul, named it the 'Bouffes Pari- siens,' and produced a succession of operettas which became immensely popular, and eventually opened to him the doors of the Ope"ra Comique, and even of the Acade"mie, where his ballet- pantomime, 'Le Papillon,' was brought out, Nov. 26, 1860, with considerable success. Thus this very clever and prolific musical caricaturist ran some danger of being treated as a first-rate composer at a time when Cafes-concerts were encouraged, and Concerts du Conservatoire were out of fashion at the Tuileries. The following list of his works is arranged for convenience' sake in alphabetical order.

��Apothlcaira et Ferruquler, 1 act i


Bagatelle. 1 act ; 1874. Barbe bleue, S acts ; 1866. Barkouf. 3 acts ; 1861. Ba-ta-clan. 1 act ; 1856. Bavards, Les, 2 acts ; 1863. Belle Helene, La, 3 acts ; 1865. Bergers, Les, S acts ; 1866. Boite au lalt. La, 4 acts ; 1877. Bonne d'enfant. La, 1 act ; 1856. Boulangere, La, a des ecus, 3 acts ;


Boule de nelge. 3 acts ; 1872. Braconnlers, Les, 3 acts ; 1873. Brigands, Les, 3 acts ; 1870. Chanson de Fortunio, La, 1 act;


Chateau, a Toto, Le, 3 acts ; 1868. Chatte, La, me'tamorphose'e en

femme, 1 act ; 1858. Creole, La, 3 acts ; 1875. Croquefer, 1 act ; 1857. Daphnls et Ohio*, 1 act ; 1860. Deux Aveugles. Les, 1 act i 1855. Diva, La, 3 acts ; 1869. Docteur Ox, Le, 3 acts ; 1877. Dragonette, 1 act ; 1857. Fantaslo, 3 acts; 1872. Flfre enchante, Le. 1 act ; 1868. Fllle du Tambour major. La, 3

acts ; 1879. Financier, Le, et le Savetler, 1 act ;

1856. Folre St. Laurent, La, 3 acts;

1877. Genevieve de Brabant, 3 acts;


Georgiennes, Les, 3 acts ; 1864. Grande duchesse de Gerolsteln,

La, 3 acts ; 1887.

He de Tullpatan, L', 1 act ; 1868. Jeanne qul pleure et Jean qul rit,

lact; 1865.

��Jolte Parfumeuse, La, 3 acts;


Madame Favart, 3 acts ; 1878. Madame 1'Archlduc, 3 acts ; 1874. Maltre Feronilla, 3 acts ; 1S78. Mariage aux lanternes, Le, 1 act ;


Marocalne. La, S acts ; 1879. Mesdaraes de la Halle, 1 act ; 1858. Monsieur Choufleurl, 1 act ; 1861. Monsieur et Madame Denis, 1

act ; 1862.

Orphee aux enters, 3 acts ; 1868. Papillon, Le, ballet, 2 acts ; 1860. Pepito, 1 act ; 1863. Pirlchole. La, 3 acts; 1868. Permission de dlz heures, La, 1

act; 1874.

Pierrette et Jacquot, 1 act ; 1876. Pomme d'api, 1 act ; 1873. Font des souplrs, Le, 2 acts ; 1861. Frlncesse de Trebizonde, 3 acts;


Robinson Crusod, 3 acts ; 1867. Koi Garotte. Le, 4 acts ; 1872. Romance, La, de la rose, 1 act ;


Rose de St. Flour, La, 1 act ; 1856. Signer Fagotto, 1 act ; 1868. Solxante sixifeme, Le, 1 act ; 1856. Trois baisera du (liable. Les, 1 act;


Tromb al Cazar, 1 act ; 1856. Une demoiselle en loterle, 1 act;


Une nult blanche, 1 act ; 1855. Un marl a la porte, 1 act ; 1859. Vent du Soir, 1 act ; 1857. Vert -Vert, S acts ; 1869. Vie partsienne, La, 5 acts ; 1866. Violoneux, Le, 1 act ; 1855. Voyage dans la lune, 4 acts ; 1876. Voyage, Le, de MM. Dunanan, 9

acts; 1862.

��69 pieces and 143 acts, written in 25 years! Such astonishing facility implies abundance of ideas, rather than originality or fastidiousness. Offenbach's melodies are often vulgar and often wanting in piquancy. He never hesitates to repeat a good phrase, or to break a rule, if any purpose is to be served by it ; but this and other faults are much concealed by the bustle, gaiety, and ex- travagance of his effects, the frequent happy hits, and the strong natural vein of irony. It is melan- choly to predict that of all these musical bouffon- neriea little or nothing will remain ; since in order to live, a work of art must possess either style or passion, whilst these too often display merely a vulgar scepticism, and a determination to be funny even at the cost of propriety and taste. Offenbach has twice visited England. In 1844

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