Hofmannsthal, Hugo von

DRAMATIST, LYRICAL POET (AUSTRIA)
BORN 1 Feb 1874, Wien - DIED 15 Jul 1929, Rodaun (near Wien)
GRAVE LOCATION Wien: Friedhof Kalksburg, 23., Zemlinskygasse 26 (Gruppe 01, Nummer 49)

Son of the banker Hugo von Hofmannsthal. In 1891 he wrote his first play "Gestern" under the name of Theophil Morren. Around the same time he met the poet Stefan George and he started publishing poems in George's journal "Blätter für die Kunst". He studied law and philology, but after he finished his studies in 1901 he decided to concentrate on writing and he became a member of the group Jung Wien (Young Vienna). In 1901 he married Gertrud Schlesinger, the daughter of a Jewish banker in Vienna. She converted to Christianity before their marriage and they lived in Rodaun near Vienna and had three children.

He first met the composer Richard Strauss in 1900 and from 1906 he started writing libretti for his operas. "Elektra" (1909) and "Der Rosenkavelier" (1911) were very succesful. They were followed by "Ariadne auf Naxos" (1912).

During the First World War he worked for the government, writing speeches and articles. Together with Strauss, Max Reinhardt and Franz Schalk he founded the Salzburg Festival in 1917. The fall of the monarchy in Austra in 1918 was a shock to him.

He continued writing plays and for Strauss he wrote the libretti for "Die Frau ohne Schatten" (1919) and "Die ägyptische Helena" (1927). On 13 Jul 1929 his son Franz commited suicide and two days later he suddeny died himself of a stroke at his home in Rodaun. According to his own wishes he was buried in the habit of a Franciscan tertiary. "Arabella", his last collaboration with Strauss, premiered in 1933.

Related persons
• was a friend of Bahr, Hermann
• visited Olfers, Marie von
• cooperated with Reinhardt, Max
• cooperated with Strauss, Richard Georg

Events
1909/1/25: Première of "Elektra" by Richard Strauss at the Hofoper in Dresden
The libretto was by Hugo von Hofmannsthal and Annie Krull was Elektra. Ernst von Schuch was the conductor.
1911/1/26: Première of "Der Rosenkavalier" by Richard Strauss at the Hofoper in Dresden
Hugo von Hofmannsthal wrote the libretto and Margarethe Siems was Marschallin. Ernst von Schuch was the conductor.
1912/10/25: Première at Stuttgart of "Ariadne auf Naxos" by Richard Strauss
The libretto was by Hugo von Hofmannsthal. Ariadne was performed by Maria Jeritza.
1916/10/4: Premiere of the revised version of "Ariadne auf Naxos" by Richard Strauss in Vienna
The libretto was by Hugo Hofmannsthal and Maria Jeritza performed the part of Ariadne. Selma Kurz was Zerbinetta. Franz Schalk was the conductor.
1919/10/10: Premiere of the opera "Die Frau ohne Schatten" by Richard Strauss in Vienna
The libretto was by Hugo von Hofmannsthal and Karl-Aagaard Oestvig and Maria Jeritza performed the parts of the emperor and the empress.
1928/6/6: Premiere of the opera "Die ägyptische Helena" by Richard Strauss in Dresden
The libretto was by Hugo von Hofmannsthal and the part of Helena was performed by Elisabeth Rethberg.
1933/7/1: Premiere of the opera "Arabella" by Richard Strauss in Dresden
The libretto was by Hugo von Hofmannsthal and the part of Arabella was performed by Viorica Ursuleac.

Sources
LeMO Biografie - Biografie Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Hugo von Hofmannsthal - Wikipedia

Images

The grave of Hugo von Hofmannsthal at the Friedhof Kalksburg, Vienna.
Picture by Androom (19 Aug 2009)

 

The grave of Hugo von Hofmannsthal at the Friedhof Kalksburg, Vienna.
Picture by Androom (19 Aug 2009)

 


Hogarth, George

Published: 26 Sep 2009
Last update: 3 Oct 2011