Phil Gyford


Friday 20 May 2005

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I scanned a couple of biographies of Federico Garcia Lorca to look for information about Blood Wedding, and specifically anything that might relate to the part of Bridegroom, which I’m currenly trying to get the hang of. If I had more time I should probably read the whole biography…

308 Lorca played two records incessantly in August of 1932: A Bach cantata and a collection of songs by the cante jondo singer Tomás Pavón. Needed these for inspiration.

309 Took “less than a month” to write Blood Wedding. Lorca read this story in a Granada newspaper some years before:

“A bride in the southern Spanish province of Almería had disappeared with her cousin on the morning of her wedding, and her bridegroom had gone in search of the couple. Some time later the cousin’s dead body had been found, and near it the bride, in disarray. She told authorities she had been in love with her cousin and had planned to run away with him. The bridegroom was arrested for the cousin’s murder; it later turned out the bridegroom’s brother had committed the crime.” [p.311: The cousin was a bachelor, and was killed with a gun.]

Was a huge story. A ballad appeared chronicling the affair. At least one novel was based on it by 1931.

310 John Millington Synge’s Riders to the Sea is an obvious influence.

312 “In at least one production of Blood Wedding, Lorca underscored the play’s affinity with Bach by introducing the forest scene with a passage from the second Brandenburg Concerto.”

320 Rehearsals. “Lorca treated his script like a musical score.” “He continuously interrupted the action of another scene to shout, ‘It has to be mathematical!’”

321 His imitators often tried to replicate recitals of poetry “with a broad Andalusian accent and the singsong chant of a Gypsy.” But Lorca didn’t want such histrionics for Blood Wedding. Should be a Castilian accent: “The work is written in pure Castillian.” [As if I could even do a generic Spanish accent.]

Opened in Madrid’s Teatro Beatriz, March 8, 1933.

322 Ecstatic reviews. While the story was familiar, the form, style and symbolism made it seem “new”. Some critics didn’t like the forest scene.

408 English version, Bitter Oleander opened in New York, 11 February 1935. Mostly terrible reviews.

Federico Garcia Lorca by Felicia Hardison Londré

30 Blood Wedding was written in one week in 1932. Inspired by a newspaper story Lorca read in 1928.

148 Blood Wedding set in Andalusia. Often referred to as part of a trilogy (Blood Wedding, Yerma and The House of Bernarda Alba).

The Mother desires to restrict, in effect, to emasculate, her son.

149 Bridegroom’s symbol is his phallic knife (Leonardo’s is his horse).

150 Lack of water on Bride’s father’s land — implies not fertile ground for a marriage. Bride wishes she were a man — strong.

155 “Based on a short account Lorca had read in a Granada newspaper of a bride from Almería who ran off with another man on her wedding day, followed by the bridegroom who killed and was killed by the seducer.”


wow, thanks for the notes, really helpful

Posted by Randall R on 20 September 2005, 10:17 pm | Link

anything you know about the moon im doing a production of it and finding it hard to be that character

Posted by sophie on 26 February 2007, 12:11 pm | Link

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