Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Finally, a Contes d'Hoffman that made sense to me

I think I had a vague notion that this was one of those operas with several versions, but I've only seen and listened to one and though it's pretty, I totally didn't get the ending.

Fortunately, I managed to watch the Met broadcast before the DVR ran out of space. (it deleted Turandot earlier this week) Anyhoo, I liked how they used Nicklausse/The Muse to give the whole thing a reason/motivation other than "Hoffman just wants to entertain his friends". During one of the intermission interviews they asked Kate Lindsey about what she thought Nicklausse's role was, because in this version he's, as usual, Hoffman's friend, but there's also a bit of a darker side where you're not sure if he's really helping or not. She described his part as (paraphrasing) "sometimes you're on the edge of a cliff and you need a really good friend to push you off". and the final chorus drove that home saying that Hoffman should use the ashes of his broken heart to create his art, oh and being drunk all the time doesn't hurt either. ;D