Liebe und Eifersucht

Liebe und Eifersucht (Love and Jealousy) is a Singspiel, an opera with spoken dialogue, in three acts by the German composer and author E. T. A. Hoffmann, composed in 1807 on his own libretto based on the translation by August Wilhelm Schlegel of a play by Calderón. The opera was first published by Schott in 1999, and premiered at the 2008 Ludwigsburger Schlossfestspiele.

Liebe und Eifersucht
Singspiel by E. T. A. Hoffmann
The composer's self-portrait
Based onCalderón's play translated by August Wilhelm Schlegel
27 November 2008 (2008-11-27)


The author Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann was interested in music, wanted originally to become a musician, and added Amadeus to his names in honour of Mozart. He composed one successful opera in 1816, Undine, which became a major influence on the development of German Romantic opera.[1] He wrote his own libretto for the earlier work Liebe und Eifersucht, based on August Wilhelm Schlegel's translation of a play by Pedro Calderón de la Barca, La banda y la flor (The Scarf and the Flower).[2] Hoffmann composed the opera in 1807.[1]

The opera was not performed in Hoffmann's lifetime. It was first published by Schott in 1999.[1] and premiered at the Ludwigsburger Schlossfestspiele[3] on 27 July 2008, at the Forum am Schlosspark in Ludwigsburg, in a coproduction with the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz in Munich,[2][4] where it was first performed on 27 September that year.[4][5] Michael Hofstetter, who staged a series of revivals of rarely played operas, conducted the Ludwigsburg Festival orchestra and singers from the Gärtnerplatztheater in performances[4][6] and a recording.[2] The first production in Switzerland was mounted in Zurich in 2016 by the Free Opera Company, with dialogues in more modern German and a reduced orchestra, conducted by Emmanuel Siffert.[1]

Roles and music

The action takes place in Florence.[6][2]

RolesVoice typePremiere cast, 27 July 2008
Conductor: Michael Hofstetter[6]
Duke of Florencehigh bassGary Martin
Enrico, in the duke's servicetenorRobert Sellier
Ottavio, in the duke's servicetenorFlorian Simson
FabiobassJörg Simon
Lisida, daughter of FabiosopranoChristina Gerstberger
Chloris, daughter of FabiosopranoThérèse Wincent
Nisalow sopranoSybille Specht
Celia, servantsopranoSybilla Duffe
Ponlevi, Enrico's servantbassStefan Sevenich
A singer (soprano), musicians, court people

The plot is marked by confusions in relationships, caused partly by disguise and by misunderstanding of signs and tokens of love.[2][7] The music was described as inspired by Mozart, "everywhere marked by understanding and craftsmanship – and nowhere distinguished by genius."[2]


  1. Schacher, Thomas (5 September 2016). "Ende des Dornröschenschlafs? / Als Schweizer Erstaufführung bringt die Free Opera Company das vergessene Singspiel von E.T.A. Hoffmann in Zürich auf die Bühne". Neue Zürcher Zeitung (in German). Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  2. Pursglove, Glyn (2006). "E. T. A. Hoffmann (1776–1822) / Liebe und Eifersucht (1807)". Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  3. Lamb, Richard (February 2011). "Hoffmann Liebe und Eifersucht / Hoffmann's tale of love and jealousy is a pleasing discovery". Gramophone. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  4. Otten (31 July 2008). "Es bleiben einzelne Lichtpunkte". Frankfurter Rundschau (in German). Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  5. ""Liebe und Eifersucht"". Augsburger Allgemeine (in German). 25 September 2008. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  6. "Liebe und Eifersucht". Schott. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  7. Sullivan, Henry W. (2009). Calderón in the German Lands and the Low Countries: His Reception and Influence, 1654-1980. Cambridge University Press. pp. 181–183. ISBN 978-0-52-112160-6.
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