Last summer I fortune to see the United States premiere of SIX the Musical at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre last summer and I was so blown away and inspired by the show that I decided to host a SIX-themed party to celebrate its Broadway debut. You might not have heard of SIX yet since it is a brand new musical but I promise you’re familiar with the subject matter: it’s a creative reimagining of the lives of the six wives of King Henry VIII.
The six queens take the stage in fabulous outfits and compete in a singing competition to see who had the most tragic life. That might seem sad but trust me, it’s fantastic. The show is only 75 minutes and packs in six solos and three group numbers. Read my full review of SIX here and see why I felt the need to kick off season five with a SIX party.
“Welcome to the show
To the historemix”
This episode of The Rose Table is sponsored by Barnabas Blattgold.
The most prominent part of SIX’s aesthetics is the color scheme. Each queen has her own color that’s represented in her costume and the lighting during her solo. The colors are as follows (in proper queen order of course):
- Catherine of Aragon – gold
- Anne Boleyn – green
- Jane Seymour – white/silver
- Anna of Cleves – red
- Katherine Howard – pink
- Catherine Parr – blue
There is no set to speak of in the show, just lights and fabulously dressed queens so I kept my normal dining room decor and projected each queen’s color behind her to wash the wall with light.
“Listen up, let me tell you a story –
A story that you think
You’ve heard before”
I styled the table with a purple tablecloth (the color of royalty) and that is it. I left the center total clear – something I’ve never done before – to display all of the food on the table at once. That’s right, for once I didn’t serve dinner in courses at a dinner party. I was going for a modern Tudor feast after all, so the food became the table decor.
“Divorced. Beheaded. Died. Divorced. Beheaded. Survived.”
I styled my side table with a rainbow of colors in the bouquet and my program from Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, signed by all six queens.
Every place setting was difference. Each queen had a napkin in her color displayed with a silver crown napkin ring. Each queen also had a bud vase with a mini bouquet at her place with flowers in her color, which created the most incredible rainbow table. It was mesmerizing to look at! I used a mix of roses, hydrangeas, alstroemeria, and more. Basically whatever I could get my hands on in the proper color.
I used my mint julep cups as water goblets and my silver chargers in lieu of plates since (spoiler alert) we didn’t use silverware. We ate with our hands, Tudor style! Instead of a traditional place card, each queen had her ending (Divorced/Beheaded/Died/Survived) written on a gold placard.
My queens looked incredible! My friends worked so hard to find outfits that fit their queens’ aesthetic, studying the SIX Instagram page for months looking for pieces that would work. The minute I saw them, I was in party mode.
“History’s about to get overthrown”
For my Catherine Parr look, I opted for a blue skater dress, high heeled combat boots, black lace gloves, a black feather shoulder piece, hoop earrings, and a sparkly silver crown.
What’s more fitting for a bunch of queens than liquid gold? I mixed a bit of lemon simple syrup and champagne with Barnabas Blattgold liquid gold for the most mesmerizing champagne cocktail. The gold flecks stay suspended in the glass and shimmer all night long. It’s the perfect cocktail for New Year’s Eve, an anniversary party, or other special occasion. Get the recipe for Royal Champagne here.
I created six dishes, one inspired by each queen, for my SIX party and served everything at once Tudor feast-style sans silverware.
“I don’t need your love”
All I need is SIX!”
Catherine of Aragon: Spanish Queen Crostini
An appetizer fit for a queen! I topped toasted baguette with sweet fig jam, spicy chorizo, salty manchego cheese, and, since she’s the gold queen, I topped the appetizer with Barnabas Blattgold gold flakes. I cannot stress this enough: this appetizer is insanely delicious. Get the recipe here.
Anne Boleyn: Green Sleeves
For the queen who changed history, I served prosciutto wrapped asparagus to represent the “green sleeves” that SIX references several times. Get the recipe here.
Jane Seymour: Artichoke Heart of Stone Tartlets
For the only one King Henry truly loved, I served adorable little tartlets that are way easier than they look. Jane’s solo in the show is Heart of Stone, which was the inspiration for this artichoke heart app. Get it? They’re crispy, creamy, and can sit out for hours, making them an excellent party dish. Get the recipe here.
Only for SIX would I learn how to cook pheasant! I was dead set on serving pheasant, since Anna of Cleves sings, “bring me some pheasant, keep it on the bone” in her solo Get Down. My orange honey pheasant is stuffed as aromatic as it sounds, with a fabulous orange-honey glaze that makes the whole house smell amazing. The skin is nice and crispy and the holiday-worthy dish is delicious served with champagne beurre blanc. Get the recipe here.
Katherine Howard: A Sexy Little Tart
For “ten amongst these three’s” I came up with an easy tart with the sexiest ingredients I could think of: caramelized onions, gruyere cheese, bacon, and rosemary. Get the recipe here.
Catherine Parr: Parr-mesan Cheddar Scones
These scones are ahead of their time, just like Henry’s final wife. I baked savory English buttermilk scones with Cotswold cheddar and salty parmesan cheese. They are fantastic straight out of the oven but they stay good for days so you can easily make them several hours before your party. Get the recipe here.
You didn’t think I forgot about dessert, did you? The grand finale of SIX references the queens’ “crowning glory,” which I thought was the perfect name for a cake. The queens come together at the end of the show and I wanted to illustrate that with dessert so I made a rainbow cake with all six of the queens’ color baked into one show-stopping dessert, topped with a shimmery gold crown. Get the recipe here.
“Too many years
Lost in history
We’re free to take
Our crowning glory”
Want to see more? Watch the SIX the Musical episode of The Rose Table:
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Watch the SIX the Musical episode of The Rose Table:
All my love,