Carl Maria von Weber an James Robinson Planché in London
Dresden, Samstag, 19. Februar 1825


Absolute Chronologie






My dear Sir!

I have received the second act of Oberon the 18t January, and the third act, and your very amiable letter, in one and the same Day, the 1t February.

These two acts are also filled with the greatest beauties. I embrace the whole in love, and will endeavour, not to remain beind you. To this Acknowlegment of your work, you can give credit, the more, as I must repeat that the cut of the whole is very foreign to all my ideas and maxims. the intermixing of so many principal actors who do not sing, the omission of the music in the most important moments, -- all these things deprive our Oberon the title of an opera, and will make him unfit for all other Theaters in Europe; which is a very bad thing for me. but -- passons la dessus --

You have so wll construed my first prayers; that I continue with proposals, in confidence to your Kindness.

The Scene between Scheramsmin and Fatima in the 2 act; and the /: very pretty :/ Arietta of the latter, must necessarely be omitted; and the quartetto follow immediately. Also the Chorus of the Pirates. But, the time which we gein thereby, we must opend for a Duetto between Huon and Reiza. The absence of this piece of music would be very much regretted; and the Scene upon the desert shore, seems the most convenient place for it. though my musical heart sighs, that the first moment where the loving pair find each-other, passes without music. but, -- the opera appears too long already. --

Now wish I yet, a mad Aria for Sherasmin, /: when he discover the Horn; :/ in which Fatima’s lamentations unite, and close the scene with a beautiful contrast.

Oh! Dear Sir! what would not we produce, if we were living in the same town.

Still I beag leave to observe, that the composer looks more for the expression of feelings than the figurative. the former he may repeat and develop in all their graduations; but, verses, like

"like the spot the tulip weareth""Deep within its dewy urn" or, in Huons Song, "like hopes that deceive us""or fals friends who leave us,Loan as descendeth prosperit’ys Sun pp["]must be said only once.

You See, that I speak to you, as to an old acquintance, and I hope at least that you will consider it so.

Mr. Kemble has not honored me till now with an answer to my letter of the 6 January. I conclude from this, that he is convinced of the necessity to retard the opera, and that consequentely we have time to regulate our affair. The same reason has also withheld me from replying to his letter of the 4 January, which has crossed mine of the 6 January.

Yet, I must own the wish, to see this affair decides at last; because all sort of uncertainty puzzles me, and disturbs me in working.

To speek sincerely, I do not unterstand why our honored Friend Mr Kemble hesitates to name the sum which he can offer me. He knows what length he can go, to the credit of his country and Establishment. I can demand, but I would neither appear indiscreet, nor suffer injury, the latter of which I have - but too frequently experianced. Russia, Sweden, Poland, France, Scotland and England, have brought on the boards my performances without their beeing entitled to it, for my works have not been printed. And tho’ I do not value money, to take notice of it, the world forces me at last.

Pardon, Dear Sir, that I am molesting you with things you can not be interested in -- but Poets and composers live together in a Sort of angels-marriage which damands a reciprocal trust. and now it is truely time to end my very checkered Epistle.

I am with the greatest esteem and regard Your most obedient Servant
C. M. von Weber.



bestätigt Erhalt Akt 2–3 Oberon; das Ganze sagt ihm zu, obwohl es seinen Vorstellungen von einer Oper nicht entspreche; Änderungswünsche, besonders die zu wenig Gefühlsausdruck enthaltenden Verse betr.; erwartet Kembles Zusage zur Verschiebung der Oper u. dessen Honorarvorschlag


I have received the second act of Oberon the 18t January


Eveline Bartlitz; Joachim Veit


  • Textzeuge: San Marino (US), Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery (US-SM)


    • 1 DBl. (3 b.S. einschl. Adr.)

    Dazugehörige Textwiedergaben

    • Entwurf: Berlin (D), Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Musikabteilung (D-B)
      Signatur: Mus. ms. autogr. theor. C. M. v. Weber WFN 6, Mappe XVII, Bl. 90a/v u. 90b/r
    • Kopie: Berlin (D), Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Musikabteilung (D-B)
      Signatur: Weberiana Cl. II B, 2ß, Nr. 3, S. 887–889


      • dt. Übers.
    • MMW II, S. 589–590
    • Planché, James Robinson: Recollections and Reflections, Vol.1, London 1872, S. 76–78


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