Hipermestra: discover the story in two minutes

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Festival 2017 sees the UK premiere of Cavalli’s Hipermestra.

The story starts with King Danao ordering his 50 daughters to kill their 50 husbands on the their wedding night. Intrigued? Our short animation tells the whole tale in just two minutes, or you can read the illustrated story below.

Hipermestra opens Festival 2017 on 20 May and will be on stage until 8 July.


Hipermestra: the illustrated story

An oracle declares King Danao of Argos will be slaughtered by one of his brother Egitto’s 50 sons.

To cheat destiny, Danao weds his 50 daughters to Egitto’s sons. On their wedding night they’re to kill their husbands.


But one daughter, Hipermestra, falls in love.

Choosing to put her father’s life and kingdom at risk, she and her nurse help her husband, Linceo, escape.


Danao throws his daughter in prison, where she becomes the victim of General Arbante’s advances.

Hipermestra remains true to Linceo, even on hearing he has raised an army and is marching on Argos.


King Danao, terrified, sends General Arbante to offer Linceo favourable terms.

Arbante is secretly pursued by Elisa, who is infatuated with Linceo.


Arbante deceives Linceo, telling him Hipermestra has taken another lover. Mad with rage and grief, Linceo swears to kill her.

Argos is razed to the ground and Danao slaughtered: the prophecy is fulfilled.


Linceo, believing Hipermestra dead, succumbs to Elisa’s beauty. Distraught, Hipermestra throws herself from a tower but is miraculously rescued.

Discovering Arbante’s deception, Linceo finds his way back to his faithful wife, while Arbante and Elisa settle for each other.


Hipermestra illustrations © Tilly aka runningforcrayons.co.uk