Calderon de la Barca: La Vida Es Sueno
The Spanish classic, performed in the classic Spanish style—beautifully spoken and clear to the ear. With Julio Núñez as Segismundo and a first-rate supporting cast.
La vida es sueño is a philosophical allegory regarding the human situation and the mystery of life. The play has been described as “the supreme example of Spanish Golden Age drama”. The story focuses on the fictional Segismundo, Prince of Poland, who has been imprisoned in a tower by his father, King Basilio, following a dire prophecy that the prince would bring disaster to the country and death to the King. Basilio briefly frees Segismundo, but when the prince goes on a rampage, the king imprisons him again, persuading him that it was all a dream.
The play’s central themes are the conflict between free will and fate, as well as restoring one’s honor. It remains one of Calderón’s best-known and most studied works, and was listed as one of the 40 greatest plays of all time in The Independent. Other themes include dreams vs. reality and the conflict between father and son. The play has been adapted for other stage works, in film and as a novel.