Sunday, September 2, 2007

Engelbert Humperdinck (1854-1921)

Sierra Club


Humperdinck is generally known for his fairy-tale opera Hansel und Gretel, a Christmas favourite. The opera was first performed in Weimar in 1893 and was an immediate success. His career brought him into early contact with Wagner and he became music tutor to the composer's son Siegfried Wagner. He held various teaching positions of some distinction including professor of harmony at the Barcelona Conservatoire and a similar post at the Conservatoire. He enjoyed a fruitful collaboration in the theatre with Max Reinhardt, providing incidental music for a number of Shakespearean productions in Berlin. If Hansel und Gretel remains the best known of Humperdinck's operas, recent revivals abroad of Die Konigskinder (The King's Children), another fairy-tale opera, suggest a renewal of its popularity. [Adapted from Karadar]


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