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Jacques Offenbach

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Biography

A German/French composer of dramatic music, vocal, and instrumental works, the progenitor of the operetta form. His music influenced Gilbert And Sullivan. One doesn't want everything to be romantic or serious in a collection of symphonic music, and the lovely tunes and variations in Gait‚ Parisienne and in his one try at grand opera, Les contes d'Hoffman ("The Tales of Hoffman"), are well worth hearing from time to time. His ballet Le papillon ("The Butterfly") is also delightful, especially its lovely waltz. The libretti of his operettas contain much satire and humor (which don't always come off in English translation).

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Born:

June 20, 1819 in Cologne, Germany

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