House of Bernada Alba

  • by Federico Garcia Lorca
  • Directed by Heidi Vaughan
  • Original Music by Sarah Moody
  • Designed by Harriet de Winton
  • The egg theatre 11-14th September 2013

When Bernarda’s husband dies, she locks all the doors and windows telling her grown up daughters ‘There are 8 years of mourning ahead of us’. But locks can’t hold back the tide of desire… Performed by a large, all-female cast of Engage actors, this production used specially-commissioned original choral music and will transformed the egg theatre into the inner courtyard of Bernarda’s house.

Directors Notes:

Two months after the completion of this play the 38 year old playwright, Federicio Lorca was executed. Murdered by the Nationalist forces of the Spanish Civil War for personal and political reasons; this homosexual playwright had outspoken liberal views and surprisingly, to this day, his remains have never been found.

What he leaves behind is a brilliant body of plays of which House of Bernarda Alba is his last completed legacy. As a piece this play is embedded with sexual and female repression of 1930’s rural Spain, the damage of gossip and mob mentality, the harness of duty and propriety, the fragility of human life and the need to be true to our own natures.

In our production we have interweaved these elements and, with great thanks to this creative team and company, you will experience an impressively imposing set sealing us all into this world where the electric crackles of the storm, uncomfortable sensations of heat and the eyes of the neighbours surround us all.

These sensations heighten our own complicity as audience members within the world of this household. We are silent as we watch this story and we are left with silence. It is a brutal lesson for us all at the end of the piece that we must sing out against injustice and never lose our voice. For it is through this script that Lorca lives on and continues his, especially in the light of recent atrocities, a dynamic and relevant legacy.

‘Those who are afraid to present serious drama for fear they cannot attract an audience should look at Heidi Vaughn’s expertly presented production.’ – The Bristol Post

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