Salome Dancing before Herod

Oscar Wilde, Sarah Bernhardt, and the Murderous Princess

With David Rodes, director emeritus, The Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts

The Irish writer and wit Oscar Wilde and his friend the French actress Sarah Bernhardt were two of the most famous celebrities of late 19th-century Europe. Their collaboration in the 1890s on the theatrical tragedy Salome was inspired by the shimmering painting by Gustave Moreau, but by the time the play had its premiere in Paris in 1896, Bernhardt—cast as the young princess—was over 50 and Wilde was serving a two-year sentence for sodomy in an English prison. Nevertheless, as Wilde would assert, “Legend remains victorious in spite of history,” and this program hopes to recapture the scandalous excitement of the play and its starring actress and imprisoned author.

Presented in conjunction with A Strange Magic: Gustave Moreau's Salome.


Location: Billy Wilder Theater
Ticketing: Tickets are required and available at the Box Office one hour before the program. General admission tickets are available one per person on a first come, first served basis following member ticketing. Early arrival is recommended.
HAMMER PLUS Benefit: Members receive priority ticketing (until 15 minutes before the program) by skipping the general admission line and can choose their seats, subject to availability.
Parking: Under the museum, $3 flat rate after 6 p.m. (cash only)

Food and drink may not be carried into the Billy Wilder Theater. Read our food, bag check, and photo policies.

All Hammer public programs are free and made possible by a major gift from the Dream Fund at UCLA.

Generous support is also provided by Susan Bay Nimoy and Leonard Nimoy, the Simms/Mann Family Foundation, The Brotman Foundation of California, Good Works Foundation and Laura Donnelley, and all Hammer members.