Autograph letter signed ("A. v. Kotzebue") to "Hochwohlgebohrerer Herr Baron!"
2-1/2 pp. of a bifolium. Quarto. Dated Jewe, 17 May 1796.
A "sub rosa" inquiry regarding the directorship of the Burg Theater in Vienna after the death of Alxinger on 17 May 1796.
Kotzebue is very anxious that no one know of the present letter and the fact that he is applying for the position, asking his correspondent not to tell anyone and, if the position is already taken, "to conceal the contents of this letter."
Slightly worn; creased at folds and very slightly overall; several very small holes; remains of mounting tape to margins of verso of final page. Logged as having been received in Vienna on 1 July on verso of final page
Kotzebue was a "German dramatist, diplomat, and man of letters. His adventurous career included appointments as lawyer and theatre secretary, Russian court councillor and editor, poet and Russian consul. His satires, his quarrels, and above all his duty to report to the Tsar of Russia on all affairs of interest in Germany and France, made him many enemies, and he was assassinated in 1819 by a student who suspected him of being a traitor and spy.
Kotzebue’s immense output of plays includes a majority of ephemera, yet he dominated the repertory of German and Austrian (and many foreign) theatres for a considerable part of the 19th century. ... Beethoven wrote music for his Die Ruinen von Athen and König Stephan; Boieldieu, Kreutzer, Lortzing, Reichardt and Spohr are among composers who set his works; and Schubert wrote two operas to Kotzebue texts: Der Spiegelritter(?1812, incomplete), and Des Teufels Lustschloss (1813–14)." Peter Branscombe in Grove Music Online
Kotzebue was, indeed, appointed head of the Burgtheater in 1798 but left Vienna in 1799 after a short and unsuccessful tenure at the theatre.
Price: $1,650.00 other currencies