The “Princes in the Tower” are to get their very own opera….

 

Here it is again, that painting in which Edward looks 24 if he’s a day! That face is NOT a sensible depiction of a young boy.

The myth of the “Princes in the Tower” is about to be turned into an opera. I notice too that their disappearance is immediately described as “one of history’s most notorious unsolved crimes”. What crime? No one knows if there ever was one, let alone that poor old Richard was responsible. It has always seemed to me more likely that Henry VII was the culprit. Still, judgement must be reserved until the outcome of this is there for us to hear and see for ourselves.

But oh dear. I can’t imagine it’s really going to be kind to Richard, not when the “founder of the Henry VII Society” has a hand in it. I find it very hard to trust anything that involves supporters of the Henry Tudor who dedicated himself to ruining Richard’s reputation. Well, Tudor had to justify killing Richard through treachery and then stealing his throne. Tudor was a low-down usurper, not the rightful heir to or occupant of the throne of England.

Tell the truth about Richard? Tudorites would rather hurl themselves on a bed of extra sharp dagger blades!

PS: I have now been sent a link to the actual opera. It’s definitely not to my taste – I prefer melody not screeches, music not just a series of jarring notes. Anyway, if you feel valorous, here’s the link.

7 comments

  1. The whole thing is on YouTube (421 views as of now). It’s just under an hour long and I liked the music pieces. There are 2 sopranos and a narrator, so things are more described than acted out. The initial events seem to be partly lifted from Shakespeare (e.g. a herald summoning James Tyrell to meet the spoopy king). However, everything is told from the point of view of the princes’ mother, so there’s only one perspective, which I found amusing. She dramatically proclaimed ‘chop!’ and sliced a hand across her throat after each name, as the narrator listed the people executed (including ‘vile Hastings’, as she called him).

    The narrator states that the rumour was put about by the king that the princes drowned *themselves* in the moat (oo, that’s a new one). The former queen sings that really, they were smothered and the younger had his throat cut for struggling (geez). Soon followed by: “when they were done, and my babes were purple”. (uh…well then)
    She goes on to say that they were buried in the Tower like common animals. Then a pause. “Then again, it is just a rumour.”
    Next up:
    NARRATOR: The new year came and went. And all the realm lived destitute under tyranny.
    (me) *mhm* >_>
    NARRATOR: But some were beginning to stir. Faint whispers of treasonous sedition started to flitter through the air.
    (me) *aha* <__O

    Q. ELIZABETH (speaking about her eldest daughter): Oh I encouraged the match! To restore what was mine by right!
    (me) *aspfhglisjsjk* O_O
    In this story, the king doesn’t even seem to have thought about her daughter before the old queen suggested it. After that, he was smitten. (cue me figuratively turning upside-down with confusion and merriment)

    NARRATOR: But. When Anne did die, the King would not marry the Queen Dowager’s daughter, for the fear that men would say he poisoned Anne to take a younger wife. Such a concern seems well founded, since men already said of Richard that he murdered the Princes in the Tower! Another scandal would not favour him kindly.
    (me) :O
    == music gets ominous, stage grows darker ==

    Q. ELIZABETH: My Elizabeth became bitter at her rejection. And thus turned from lover to rival.
    (me) *WAIT. No way. HOL’ UP* (begins grinning widely)
    Q. ELIZABETH: Having almost tasted queenship, I am sure she hungered for its sweetness. And so sent a rose to her first betrothed: Henry Tudor! Rise, rise, rise against the usurper!
    (me) *ooOOOooohh*

    NARRATOR: King Richard rode out to meet Henry Tudor with great number. They fought most savagely at Bosworth Field.
    [Cue Q. Elizabeth and her lady-in-waiting having a pillow fight most savagely with feathers flying everywhere and appropriately dramatic music]
    (me) *in awe* @_@

    Q. ELIZABETH (standing off to the side while the narrator walks on to face the lady-in-waiting): But the Usurper’s reinforcements abandoned him! So he fell! Fell into the thickest part of his enemies! Crying “Treason! Treason! Treason! Treason!” [all the while, the lady-in-waiting is beating the man up in slow motion with her pillow]
    = music intensifies =
    [the poor guy is set upon by both of them and is violently beaten to death with pillows, with the lady in waiting snuffing his life out at last by holding his head down against the ground with it]
    (me, watching the feathers spill everywhere) *dear lord they managed to make pillows more violent than axes and spears*

    The man proceeds to get up weakly and trails off stage, looking down in apparent disbelief as he slowly brushes feathers off himself.

    NARRATOR: The Tudor victors did treat King Richard’s body most cruelly, forgoing the ordinary customs. And when they had satisfied their malice, did bury his remains at the Church of St. Mary, days later, in a grave unmarked.
    = lights dim, music slows =
    NARRATOR: So it had all been for nothing.

    Then Henry Tudor is said to have been a finer king, but ‘frugal beyond reason’. And his court was in such poverty that Elizabeth decided to leave and have a life of peaceful solitude.

    The narrator then announces the death of Q. Elizabeth, as she lies in a bed in the corner.

    NARRATOR: But I also wish I’d been there. To hear her repent her sins, one last time.
    (me) *?*

    = violin screeches =
    [She sits up all of a sudden!]

    Q. ELIZABETH: After all, it was just a rumour!
    (me) *?!*
    Q. ELIZABETH: A rumour I created to disguise the truth.
    (me) *wait.* 0_0

    Q. ELIZABETH: It was an act of mercy to protect them from him! Gloucester! Usurper! Fiend fiend! Who went and died anyway!
    (me) *is it… no…*

    Q. ELIZABETH: Every night I tell myself: “You were right, he would have come for them!” God! Their eyes! Their surprise! I did it with a mother’s own hands! It was me!
    (me) ASAFHEKFSBPLPSPL *_*

    Q. ELIZABETH: Rest my sweet babes. Rest Edward and Richard. Princes… in… the… TOWER!! [she shrieks the last word wildly, holding fistfuls of pillows in the air, and the stage goes black!]

    [audience applauds, and Cyuen G. is stunned, bemused and very sleepy because it is late at night]

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I know, nuts isn’t it? It almost seemed like I did fall asleep a third of the way in and Alice-In-Wonderland-style events started happening! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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