June, 12 (10am)


June, 19 (10am)

Bartók signs an incredible music that makes this score a colossal work

Bartók, in his 1911 score, signs the work of art, which is, in short, an authentic study of loneliness, of lack of communication and hope when faced with reality. Reflecting the Hungarian composer's own introspection, he wrote to his mother in 1905: ‘I am a lonely man! I may have a few friends in Budapest, yet there are times when I suddenly become aware of the fact that I am absolutely alone. And I have a foreknowledge that this spiritual loneliness will be my fate. I look about me in search of the ideal companion, and yet I am fully aware that it is a vain quest. Even if I should ever succeed in finding someone, I am sure that I would soon be disappointed.’ 

Bluebeard, a foreshadowing of Jack the Ripper, is the grim, bloodthirsty, wife-killing ogre, and Judith, who has left home to follow this enigmatic character, will be the woman who asks uncomfortable questions. As in Lohengrin's Elsa, she is asked to trust and be blindly obedient so as not to lose her love forever. 

As Judith makes her way through the dark castle, seven doors appear to which the duke holds the keys. Each one will reveal information about the personality and past of a Bluebeard who is unable to overcome old scars. A fascinating journey with incredible music that makes this score a colossal work. 

Today a masterpiece, it was submitted to the jury of a composition competition for the best new lyric work of the Hungarian Fine Arts Commission, which returned the score with only one word written on the cover: ‘Ineffective’. 

With the support of:




Bluebeard’s Castle  

Libretto by Béla Balázs based on Charles Perrault’s Bluebeard.
World premiere: 24/5/1918 at the Hungarian State Opera House in Budapest
Barcelona premiere: 21/12/1954 at the Gran Teatre del Liceu
Last Liceu performance: 20/04/2008
Total number of Liceu performances: 19 

  • Approximate running time 1h


Symphony Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu
Josep Pons

April 2024

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