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Bluebeard's Castle


Sun 9 Aug 2015, 2:30pm–4:30pm

Where: Robert Blackwood Hall - Monash University, Wellington Rd, Clayton, Victoria

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free
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Listed by: pbpmedia

Monash University Academy of Performing Arts (MAPA) presents a unique Free concert
The gothic, atmospheric opera.

Bluebeard’s Castle
Starring Deborah Humble as Judith and Warwick Fyfe as Duke Bluebeard
Conducted by Warwick Stengards
And the world premiere of Thomas Reiner’s
Lacan: Ein Lehrstück
Featuring Soprano Jessica Aszodi, Tristram Williams on flugelhorn and the Monash Academy Orchestra

One Performance Only – Free
Sunday 9 August, 2:30pm Robert Blackwood Hall, Monash University

Gothic, atmospheric opera, Bluebeard’s Castle will shroud Robert Blackwood Hall in a stunningly dark theatrical occasion when Monash University Academy of Performing Arts presents the rarely performed work. Two of Australia’s most accomplished singers, Deborah Humble and Warwick Fyfe take to the stage for this free performance on Sunday 9 August.

Hungarian composer Béla Bartók’s only opera, Bluebeard’s Castle occupies a unique place in twentieth century music theatre. Unlike most operatic experiences, it is just one act and features only two singing characters.

Although dark-hued it has astonishing theatrical power with Bartók’s extraordinary command of atmosphere and orchestration. Music drives the narrative rather than sets or costumes and illustrating the dramatic composition will be the full Monash Academy Orchestra under the direction of conductor, Warwick Stengards. Stengards has recently returned to Australia having spent over a decade working in Germany’s operatic environment.

Australia’s internationally acclaimed Mezzo-Soprano, Deborah Humble returns from European engagements especially to perform the role of Judith. Her career has been populated with highlights – she was a former principal artist with Opera Australia, Dame Joan Sutherland Scholarship recipient, a Principal Mezzo with the State Opera of Hamburg and received international acclaim for her Wagner roles in Hamburg’s Ring Cycle alongside accolades for her 2013 Melbourne Ring Cycle performance.

Renowned for his performances in such roles as Rigoletto and Falstaff, Warwick Fyfe is one of the finest baritones Australia has produced. Most recently, he triumphed as Alberich in Opera Australia's Der Ring des Nibelungen in Melbourne – for which he received the Helpmann Award as Best Male in an Operatic Featured Role.

A metaphor for the impossibility of complete love between a man and a woman, Bluebeard’s Castle explores the relationship between Judith and Bluebeard, the gradual exposure of his possessions, domains and, most importantly, psyche. The wealthy but ageing aristocrat Bluebeard is locally the subject of suspicion and fear. Aware that he has been married several times, the local people wonder why his wives have all disappeared without trace. Rumours abound. Horrible rumours—of torture and death. His new, younger wife Judith moves into the castle and experiences a series of startling revelations…or are they simply imaginings?

Preluding Bluebeard’s Castle, is the world premiere performance of the first movement of Lacan: Ein Lehrstück from Thomas Reiner, Monash University’s School of Music, Head of Music Composition, featuring Soprano Jessica Aszodi, Tristram Williams on flugelhorn and the Monash Academy Orchestra.

Thomas Reiner was granted a six-month sabbatical to compose the work based on the writings of French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan. The Mezzo-Soprano and Flugelhorn parts of the work were inspired by, and written for, Jessica Aszodi and Tristram Williams with whom Reiner had worked with before.

Lacan: Ein Lehrstück is the perfect pairing to Bluebeard’s Castle with both works on the program a musical insight into psychological concepts.

Kodály Excerpts from Háry János Suite
Reiner Lacan: Ein Lehrstück (First movement - world premiere)
Bartók Duke Bluebeard’s Castle

Tickets: Free Bookings: To reserve a seat call MAPA Box office 9905 1111 and online - ''.