BARTOK'S Bluebeard's Castle

BARTOK'S Bluebeard's Castle

The original story is related to the fairy tale of Bluebeard’s Castle. This deeply symbolic play is open to varied interpretations and The Prologue points to the story occurring in the imagination of the audience. Some writers think that that Bluebeard was Bartók himself, and that it portrays his personal suffering. But most agree that the tale is a cautionary tale advising against being too inquisitive about a partner’s past. Kékszakállú’s secrets in the tale are represented by seven locked doors which are progressively, and forcefully, opened by his new wife Judit. While some believe that Judit is the villain in this sense, some believe that Judith only voices all that she has heard about Bluebeard.

Carmina’s interpretation uses the opera to explore the gay dating and chemsex subculture called ‘party and play’ (‘PnP’) or ‘high & horny‘ (HnH’). This exploration of high-risk, and often anonymous, sex procured through dating apps finds Judit and Kékszakállú (Bluebeard) already familiar sex partners (called ‘friends with benefits’). However, there is a sense that the attraction between the two go beyond casual sex and recreational drug use, and there is a desire for a deeper relationship. Kékszakállú, who is much older than Judit, has a reputation on the gay party scene, and Judit has heard much about him, but this is his first visit to Kékszakállú’s flat. What is true is that these two people are fascinated by each other, and are in love. However, Judit’s retrospective jealousy of Kékszakállú’s past makes it impossible for them to sustain any kind of relationship. 

Theatre Company Reviews:

Praise for previous productions:

"This was a most entertaining afternoon's performance. The standard of singing and musical accompaniment was very high and the performers seemed to enjoy every moment...the show was funny and absorbing and the time went quickly. Highly recommended." - The Audience Club


Praise for previous productions:

"This gay Tosca … performed in the theatre at the Drayton Arms pub in South Kensington… proved that a gay Tosca works." - Opera Magazine

Production Details

Run Time:

  • One Act: 60 mins

Age Restrictions:

  • 15



  • Sun 20th Feb 2022 - 4:00 pm

  • Sun 27th Feb 2022 - 4:00 pm

  • Sun 13th Mar 2022 - 4:00 pm

  • Sun 20th Mar 2022 - 4:00 pm

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