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"Haus of Holbein" is the fifth song in Six the Musical. It is a satirical song about women's beauty standards, as well as referencing the portrait of Anna of Cleves painted by Hans Holbein the Younger, which is often blamed for her divorce from King Henry VIII.

Theme[]

Hans Holbein, King's Painter to Henry VIII, is painting portraits of several women for Henry to select his next bride, as his previous wife passed away. In the song, the queens play members of Hans Holbein's painting studio, preparing the women for their portraits. Lyrically, the song describes how women in the time period were expected to go to great lengths in order to make themselves look appealing to men, such as wearing makeup that contains lead, which is poisonous to humans, and bathing in urine due to the ammonia lightening their skin and hair. These standards are also comparable to modern times, since women today are still expected by society to change aspects about themselves to appeal to men's tastes.

Anna of Cleves' portrait also relates to the song, as it was painted by Hans Holbein, and this song directly precedes Henry deciding to make Anna his next wife because of her portrait. However, when he saw his bride in person, he was disappointed, as she supposedly did not look as good as she did in her portrait. This is often blamed as the reason they were divorced so quickly.

Videos[]

Lyrics[]

[ANNA OF CLEVES]
Welcome to the house

[ALL]
To the Haus of Holbein
Ja, ooh ja, das ist gut
Ooh ja, ja
The Haus of Holbein

[CATHERINE OF ARAGON]
Hans Holbein goes around the world

[CATHERINE PARR]
Painting all of the beautiful girls

[ANNE BOLEYN]
From Spain

[JANE SEYMOUR]
To France

[ANNA OF CLEVES]
And Germany

[KATHERINE HOWARD]
The king chooses one

[ALL]
But which one will it be?

[CATHERINE OF ARAGON & ANNE BOLEYN]
You bring the corsets

[JANE SEYMOUR & ANNA OF CLEVES]
We'll bring the cinches

[CATHERINE PARR]
No one wants a waist over nine inches

[ALL EXCEPT KATHERINE HOWARD]
So what, the makeup contains lead poison?

[KATHERINE HOWARD]
At least your complexion will bring all the boys in

[ALL]
Ignore the fear and you'll be fine
We'll turn this vier into a nine
So just say "ja" and don't say "nein"

[CATHERINE PARR]
'Cause now you're in the house

[ALL]
In the Haus of Holbein
Ja, ooh ja, das ist gut
Ooh ja, ja
The Haus of Holbein

[ANNE BOLEYN]
We must make sure the princesses look great
When their time comes for a Holbein portrait

[ANNA OF CLEVES]
We know what all the best inventions are
To hold everything up

[KATHERINE HOWARD]
Ja, it's wunderbar

[CATHERINE OF ARAGON]
For blonder hair, then you just add a magical ingredient

[JANE SEYMOUR]
From your bladder

[CATHERINE PARR]
Try these heels, so high it's naughty

[ALL]
But we cannot guarantee that you'll still walk at forty

Ignore the fear and you'll be fine
We'll turn this vier into a nine
So just say "ja" and don't say "nein"

[CATHERINE PARR]
'Cause now you're in the house

[ALL]
In the Haus of Holbein
Ooh ja, das ist gut
Ooh ja, ja
The Haus of Holbein

Trivia[]

  • In live versions, many of the assigned verses have become solos or given to another queen.
    • In the West End and all subsequent productions, Anne Boleyn is the only queen who sings "But which one will it be?", instead of all the queens.
    • In the North American Tour production and in the current West End production, Jane Seymour is the only queen who sings "But we cannot guarantee that you'll still walk at 40", instead of all the queens.
      • The line is also the only one not sung in a German accent on both the cast recording and in live performances.
  • Haus of Holbein is not allowed to be taught in workshops by the cast and creatives of Six, although it is mostly freestyle and improvisation.
  • The title is likely a reference to singer Lady Gaga's creative team, the Haus of Gaga.

Gallery[]

Sixlogotransparent.png
"But I didn't look as good as I did in my pic..."
To view the Haus of Holbein gallery, click here.
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