Duke Bluebeard's Castle
In the mind’s darkest corners, a shadow waits.
As Judith unlocks room after room in the castle of her new husband, Duke Bluebeard, we follow her deeper and deeper into the recesses of his troubled imagination.
Her descent takes us through a torture chamber, an armoury, a treasury and a garden, until we find a mysterious seventh chamber which holds her fate.
A masterpiece by composer Bela Bartok, the opera is as taut and gripping as a thriller, but it resists easy categorisation. At once a study of an obsessive, violent man and an allegory of the battle of the sexes, Bluebeard’s Castle is a powerful story that incites thought as well as suspense.
Presented as a semi-staged concert performance by two internationally acclaimed performers in an hour of gripping psychodrama. This production is a two-hander, with incredibly versatile mezzo-soprano Allison Cook (Judith), and one of today’s finest basses, Canadian singer, John Relyea (Bluebeard). It is conducted by Lidiya Yankovskaya who returns to the ENO after conducting Symphony of Sorrowful Songs in 2023. The ENO will be performing this production in Hungarian, the original language, with English surtitles displayed above the stage.
This production is generously supported by the Colwinston Charitable Trust and The English National Opera Trust.