E.T.A. Hoffmann's fantasy stories inspire this popular opera by Offenbach; itself a fantasy representation of the poet Hoffmann's life.
Hoffmann (while on a drunken binge) tells his companions three very different tales of lost love. They all end in tragedy or danger which his faithful friend Nicklausse tries to save him from. Nicklausse, in the end, figures out that mechanical doll Olympia, fragile Antonia and worldly Giulietta are all aspects of the same woman. They all represent glamorous soprano Stella whom Hoffmann loses to his rival Lindorf (spoilers) as he lies passed out in a drunken stupor.
Each bead and charm of the Tales of Hoffmann Opera Bracelet represents a character or moment from the work. Some of the most important beads and charms are described below and you can see all of the symbolic descriptions on the spiral chart photo above or to the left. Also, a story chart explaining the symbolism of the beads and charms accompanies every bracelet. Click here to see the chart.
- Passionate Hoffmann is a faceted red bead; a similar gold colored bead represents faithful Nicklausse.
- Hoffmann’s nemesis Lindorf is a black iridescent bead... in the fantasy realm he is a black iridescent crystal as Coppelius, Dr. Miracle and Dapertutto.
- A star bead symbolizing the meaning of her name is Hoffman’s beloved Stella.
- Pink beads represents the three women of the stories: a small pink fire polish bead is the doll Olympia; a clear pink glass bead is the fragile Antonia; a pink glass pearl is the glamorous Giulietta.
- Delicate key charms symbolize Stella’s key, Giulietta’s key and Olympia’s wind up key.
- Olympia: A charm represents Dr. Coppelius’s magic glasses; a crackled glass disc indicates when they are broken. A music bead is Olympia’s famous song "Les oiseaux dans la charmille". Pink “chip” beads symbolize the moment when Olympia is torn to pieces.
- Antonia: Heart beads of crackle glass represent Antonia’s weak heart. A music note is her love song "Elle a fui, la tourterelle”. The large red heart is the love duet "C'est une chanson d'amour". A cameo charm indicates Antonia’s mother’s portrait which leads to her doom.
- Giulietta: Millifiore beads symbolize the magical location of Venice and the Barcarolle: "Belle nuit, ô nuit d'amour". A clear crystal is the diamond which bewitches Giulietta, a mirror charm the means by which she captures Hoffmann’s reflection.
- An iridescent golden bead is Hoffman’s muse and a white heart bead pierced by an embossed arrow is her victory in claiming Hoffmann for herself.