‘M. Butterfly’ is the perfect woman, but perfection isn’t always what it seems

M. Butterfly is David Henry Hwang’s play about love, espionage, and betrayal.

It blends Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madama Butterfly with the true story of a French diplomat who falls in love with a Peking opera singer.

M. Butterfly Story

Rene Gallimard is posted to the French embassy in Beijing. There he falls in love with opera diva Song Liling. But like all players of female roles in the Beijing opera, Song Liling is a man.

Rene returns to France in disgrace after his wife learns of the affair. Song follows and the two spend 20 years together before the truth is discovered and Rene is convicted of treason.

In the final act of betrayal, Song watches as Rene commits ritual suicide.

M. Butterfly Performance History

M. Butterfly premiered at the National Theatre in Washington, D.C. in February 1988.

M. Butterfly premiered on Broadway at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre in March, 1988. It won the 1988 Tony Award for Best Play. M. Butterfly ran through January 1990.

David Cronenberg adapted the play into a 1993 film starring Jeremy Irons and John Lone.

M. Butterfly Broadway 2017 Revival

The M. Butterfly Broadway revival stars Clive Owen and is directed by Julie Taymor at the Cort Theatre.

  • Previews October 7, 2017
  • Opening October 26, 2017
  • Open-ended run


Get tickets at www.mbutterflybroadway.com

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