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Travel Tip: Opera in Austria
Barbe-Bleue (Bluebeard)

Barbe-Bleue (Bluebeard) : By Jacques Offenbach
GRAZ  •  Helmut-List-Halle  •  Ongoing

Jacques Offenbach: Barbe-Bleue (Bluebeard)
Opéra-bouffe in three acts and four scenes
(semi-staged production, French with German dialogs)

Nikolaus Harnoncourt, conductor
Philipp Harnoncourt, stage director & lighting
Elisabeth Ahsef, costumes

In 1866, when the citizens of Prague were enjoying the first performance of the “Bartered Bride”, the Parisians were celebrating an entirely different spectacle: Jacques Offenbach and his two authors Meilhac and Halévy had turned the tale of Knight Bluebeard into a merciless satire on the frivolous morals of the Second French Empire. Knight Bluebeard is a promiscuous womanizer who repeatedly tires very soon of his recent wives and makes it a habit to have someone dispose of them one after the other. King Bobêche also makes short work of any man who dares to get too close to his Queen. The assumed murder victims are of course as fresh as a daisy and participate in a grotesque mass wedding at the end of the play. And Bluebeard is on his way towards a stormy marriage: the farmwoman Boulette puts the fear of God into him with her slogans of female emancipation.

In his music, Offenbach deftly juggles the complex mix of pastoral piece and “Grand Opéra“, of sweet, grotesque and erotic scenes.


Elisabeth Kulman, mezzo-soprano (Boulotte)
Johannes Chum, tenor (Le Sire de Barbe-Bleue)
Sophie Marin-Degor, soprano (Fleurette)
Cornel Frey, tenor (Le roi Bobêche)
Sébastien Soulès, bass (Popolani)
Thomas E. Bauer, bass (Le comte Oscar)
Markus Schäfer, tenor (Le prince Saphir)
Elisabeth von Magnus, mezzosoprano (La reine Clémentine)

Arnold Schoenberg Chor
Chamber Orchestra of Europe

2013 Styriarte Festival Website

Detailed schedule information:

Contact: Helmut-List-Halle
Tel: (43) 316 81 29 41 0

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