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from Act III of the French opera Les Contes d'Hoffmann by Jacques Offenbach
Libretto: Jules Barbier

Role: Frantz, the servant of Crespel
Voice Part: tenor       Fach: buffo tenor
Setting: A room in Crespel's house, Munich, 19th century
Synopsis: After Crespel tells Frantz to remain with his daughter, Frantz sings of how he likes to sing.
Range: Tessitura:
D3 - A4A3 - G4
Translations/Aria Texts:
Translation into English by Ann Feeney (added 1997-11-24)
Jour et nuit je me mets en quatre, Frantz's aria from Les Contes d'Hoffmann

Jour et nuit je me mets en quatre,	Day and night I bend over backwards for him
Au moindre signe je me tais,		at the slightest sign I shut up
C'est tout comme si je chantais!	I might as well be singing!
Encore non, si je chantais,		Then again, no, if I were to sing,
De ses mépris il lui faudrait rabattre,	he'd have to take back his bad opinion
Je chante seul quelquefois;		Sometimes I sing when I'm alone,
Mais chanter n'est pas commode.		But singing isn't easy!
Tra la la...				Tra la la...
Ce n'est pourtant pas la voix		But it's not my voice
La la la...				La la la...
Qui me fait défaut, je crois!		that's giving out on me, I declare.
La la la...				La la la...
Non, c'est la méthode.			No, it's the technical aspects!
Tra la la...				Tra la la...

Dame! on n'a pas tout en partage	Oh, well, we can't all have everything
Je chante pitoyablement			I sing pathetically,
Mais je danse agréablement,		But I dance charmingly
Je me le dis sans compliment,		Without flattering myself,
Corbleu! la danse est à mon avantage.	well, dancing is my strong point.
c'est là mon plus grand attrait		That, that's my biggest attraction
Et danser n'est pas commode!		and dancing isn't easy!
Tra la la...				Tra la la...
Près des femmes le jarret,		When it comes to women,
La la la...				La la la...
N'est pas ce qui me nuirait.		it's not my limbs that give way!
La la la...				La la la...
Non, c'est la méthode,			No, it's the technical aspects!  
La la la...				La la la...

Word-by-word translation by Ann Feeney, afeeney@Mcs.Net
Sounds:
none
Sheet Music/Scores:
The Ultimate Tenor Aria Album (Version 2.0). Published by CD Sheet Music. Available at Amazon.com and Sheetmusicplus.com.
Recordings:
none
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