Rousseau’s Pygmalion in Český Krumlov and Stockholm 

Performing Premodernity’s production of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s melodrama Pygmalion premièred on 15 June 2015 in the Baroque theatre in Český Krumlov. The successful performance was a result of the joint efforts of the wonderful actors João Luís Paixão as Pygmalion and Laila Neuman as Galathée, their acting coach Jed Wentz, the orchestra Musica Florea, the great assistance and hospitality of the Český Krumlov Castle Theatre (special thanks to Dr Pavel Slavko and Dr Helena Kazárová) and a group of researchers from Performing Premodernity (Mark Tatlow as musical director, Maria Gullstam as dramaturge, Magnus Tessing Schneider as consultant dramaturge, and Petra Dotlačilová as costume consultant).

A couple of months later, on 25 August 2015, Pygmalion was performed in the beautiful hall of The House of Nobility (Riddarhuset) in Stockholm during ‘Rousseau and the Theatre: Political-Aesthetic Ideals and Practices’, an international conference organised by Performing Premodernity. This time, Pygmalion was performed with a string quartet: Alion Luthmers Teyssier (violin), Jesenka Balic Zunic (violin), Louisa Tatlow (viola) and Mime Yamahiro Brinkmann (violoncello). Particular thanks are due to Lena Dahlström and Britt-Louise Jörnlöv from Drottningholms Slottsteater and Dr Helena Kazárová from Český Krumlov, for generously providing the costumes; Christer Nilsson and Nils-Hugo Stockhaus, for their enthusiastic construction of Galathée’s pavilion; those who kindly made available the statues; and finally, Henrik von Vegesack and his colleagues at Riddarhuset, for enabling the performance to take place in this unique historical setting.

Exactly a year after the Český Krumlov première, on 15 June 2016, a further performance of Pygmalion will take place in Riddarhuset as part of the 2016 IFTR conference. Are you interested in attending the performance? Send an email to Maria Gullstam

Read the full programme for Performing Premodernity’s Pygmalion here, with Rousseau’s text in French and English (translation by Maria Gullstam, Felicity Baker and Magnus Tessing Schneider).

25th February 2016