The Calixto Bieito production of The Magic Flute

[Content caution: as this deals with the sordid world of modern opera productions it may not be suitable for people of a sensitive disposition.]

[PS Really, content caution. An American friend who's an opera fan just mailed to say how outraged and repulsed they were by this and why would I travesty Mozart in that way? Maybe I should explain that Calixto Bieito is this very tiresome opera director who's big in Britain and Europe and whose productions are always... well, I actually toned it down a lot in the parody below. If you've been exposed to his ouevre, nothing below will shock you; if you haven't, not only will you not get it, you may think that I'm the nut.]

Act 1

Tamino, a handsome young prince with a heroin habit, is fleeing a large snake. He invokes the mercy of the gods and goes into a drug coma, and the snake sodomizes him. Three veiled maidens in fishnet stockings appear. They take off their veils and the rest of their clothes, hump the snake and eat it. They notice how comely the young prince is and each tries to persuade the others to run off to fetch help so she can be alone with him. Since none of them are willing to depart, all three of them pleasure themselves on his unconscious body.

The women depart and Papageno, a transvestite wearing ostrich feathers, appears. He is a child-slaver for an underage brothel. Papageno tells Tamino that it was he who killed the snake, but the three women overhear him and return. They force a bondage ball-gag on Papageno and sodomize him with a large marrow.

They give Tamino a pornographic magazine featuring a photoshoot of the Queen of the Night's daughter, Pamina. Tamino is much taken with her and masturbates enthusiastically. The Queen herself appears and says if Tamino will rescue Pamina from her imprisonment by the evil Sarastro he can marry her. The ladies give Tamino a magic flute and Papageno a magic ghetto-blaster and tell them three rent boys will appear to guide them to Sarastro's castle.

The scene changes to a street with three nightclubs. The three rentboys tell Tamino this is the road to his goal, play the biscuit game with each other and depart. Tamino shoots up to give himself courage and approaches the doors. The bouncer on the door of the first nightclub breaks his fingers and rapes him. At the second club the bouncer whips him with a bicycle chain, and then breaks his fingers and rapes him. At the nightclub called Wisdom, however, the bouncer tells Tamino that Sarastro is not a monster and tyrant and that the Queen of the Night has misled him. Then he sets fire to his feet and rapes him. Tamino rubs his bottom thoughtfully and leaves.

Meanwhile in Sarastro's palace Papageno has found Pamina. Before they can escape Sarastro's evil henchman Monostato comes in and menaces them with a monstrous dildo. Papageno remembers his magic boombox and plays it, entrancing Monostato and causing him to strip off his clothes and bump and grind his way offstage.

Their rejoicing is short-lived as Sarastro returns, to the cheers of his assembled concubines and sex-slaves. However he assures Pamina he will not force her against her will. Monostato re-enters with the captured Tamino, who is dressed in a leather gimp costume and led on a leash. Instead of rewarding him Sarastro orders Monostato to be punished. He is flogged and sodomized and made to squeal like a pig as the crowd rejoices.

Act 2

At the street of Nightclubs, Tamino and Papageno are required to undergo a series of trials in order to obtain wisdom and love. Three priests in fishnet stockings appear and warn them to beware the wiles of women. They writhe around a bit and tongue each other's bums and depart. The three veiled houris from the first act appear and tempt them, but Tamino stands firm and the priests return and the women descend to Hell where they are covered with baked beans and raped by dwarves in studded-leather underpants.

Meanwhile Pamina is undergoing her own ordeal. First Monostato dopes her with Rohypnol and prepares to ravish her. The Queen of the Night drives him off but tells Pamina she must kill Sarastro for her or she will disown her. She cajoles her daughter with some choice lesbian caresses and departs. As Pamina agonizes Monostato, who has heard everything, returns and threatens to reveal the plot unless she becomes his lover. Having given her heart to Tamino, she stoutly refuses, and Monostato prepares to roger her to death with a huge strap-on vibrator. In the nick of time Sarastro intervenes. Pamina pleads with Sarastro to spare her mother. He assures her that vengeance is unknown here and that within this sacred realm all beings love each other. In illustration of this there is a splendid orgy involving hermaphrodites, dwarves, and a couple of goats.

Elsewhere, Papageno is wandering around lost and alone. An old crone in fishnet stockings appears and demands he pledges his love to her. Reluctantly, he performs cunnilingus on her, whereupon she transforms into a beautiful maiden, Papagena. Before they can embrace, however, she is whisked away from him. Distraught and alone, Papageno makes a noose and indulges in a little autoerotic asphyxiation. The rentboys come and fellate him and remind him of the magic boombox. He plays it and Papagena is drawn back to him. They sing of the dozens of children they plan to have and then get long in the forest and make a start on them right away.

Tamino and Pamina are reunited and pledge their undying love. Hand in hand they undergo trials by Fire - represented by women in red bodystockings who lasciviously drip molten wax on their naked bodies - and Water, represented by dwarves in satin knickers who squirt them with water pistols. They emerge triumphant and supremely aroused. Monostatos and the Queen of the Night launch a final attack but they are beaten back by the powers of sunlight and are then gang-raped, hacked to pieces and eaten. The stage is flooded with light, the priests rejoice, and everyone humps everyone else.

2nd Oct 04