Bluebeard's Castle / Winterreise

  • Copyright Veerle Frissen
  • Copyright Lot Doms


Bluebeard's Castle / Winterreise

Béla Bartók (1881 - 1945), Franz Schubert (1797 - 1828)

From 11/04/2014 in Ghent - from 30/04/2014 in Antwerp

  • Martyn Brabbins
  • Stefan Kocan
  • Asmik Grigorian
  • Toby Girling
  • Severin von Eckardstein
  • Jef Smits
  • Musical direction: Martyn Brabbins
  • Director: Kornél Mundruczó
  • Blauwbaard: Stefan Kocan
  • Judith: Asmik Grigorian
  • Zanger Winterreise: Toby Girling
  • Piano Winterreise: Severin von Eckardstein / Jef Smits

Bluebeard’s Castle/Winterreiseis a unique combination of two great classical works, whose central theme is human loneliness. In Bartók’s only opera, the curiosity of the recently married young Judith leads her to discover Duke Bluebeard’s terrible secret. Once this has been revealed, he is left in solitude. (A selection of) Schubert’s Winterreise is also quite simply an expression of human loneliness. A past or doomed love throws the main character completely back on himself and draws him closer to death.

Béla Bartók based his only opera on folklore and the fairytale Bluebeard, but gave his opera an intense existential charge. This sinister tale, which is shaped with astonishing orchestral strength, is juxtaposed with the intimate quietness of the piano notes and singing voice at the heart of Schubert’s Winterreise. In a rare, but unique combination, the Hungarian theatre and film director Kornél Mundruczó uses his talent for film imagery to weld these two works into one moving scenic whole.

Read the full synopsis as pdf


Length: 2 h 45 min (incl. intermission)

Language: Hongaars. Surtitles: Dutch.

Tickets from € 11.00 to € 100.00


Vlaamse Opera Gent

Vlaamse Opera Gent

Schouwburgstraat 3
9000 Gent

Vlaamse Opera Antwerpen

Vlaamse Opera Antwerpen

Frankrijklei 3


In his work, Kornél Mundruczó, a regular guest at Cannes, highlights the depth of human life with a ruthless, but moving efficiency that never fails to move. The Slovakian bass Stefan Kocán, who has given several brilliant performances at the Metropolitan Opera, is Duke Bluebeard. The Lithuanian Asmik Grigorian sings the role of Judith. The young Toby Girling is the lonely singer in a selection from the Winterreise. Martyn Brabbins, who is well versed in the modern repertoire, will, after Wozzeck and Rumor, once again be conducting the Flanders Opera Orchestra. Severin von Eckardstein, winner of the Queen Elizabeth Competition for piano (2003) will be playing Schubert’s piano score.



De burcht van hertog Blauwbaard/Winterreise - Warm Up
De Burcht van hertog Blauwbaard/Winterreise - Bartók/Schubert - Trailer


'Der Lindenbaum' / Winterreise (Schubert)
'Oh! Virágok! Oh! Ilatoskert!' / De burcht van hertog Blauwbaard (Bartók)




Introductory talk

45 minutes before the start of each opera performance. Please note: the introductions are only in Dutch.

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