“Brokeback” Opera: Downplaying The Love?

An operatic version of the 1997 novella Brokeback Mountain is to premiere at the Teatro Real in Madrid later this month. The libretto has been written by the book’s author, Annie Proulx, with music by US composer Charles Wuorinen. The story revolves around two cowboys, both of whom are married, who start an affair when they meet in 1963. But Ivo van Hove, the opera’s director, says, “This is not an adaptation of a movie on stage. The women are much more explored, and the society around them is much more important.” The opera certainly is a same-sex love story, but in the video above van Hove suggests that the opera will be just as much about the repressive nature of the Wyoming society surrounding the cowboy’s forbidden love.

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