The Alchemist by Georg Friedrich Händel, which premiered at the Royal Theatre in London, was originally intended as stage music for the comedy by Benjamin Johnson. In the Facka Theatre production, it is a humorous concept of the general essence of the alchemist’s character: the search for the elixir of eternal youth and the mystery of gold production. It is related to the pantomime Arion in its theme of immortality and an immense desire for wealth. The original Baroque concept of seven Olomouc fountains based on mythology remained unfinished for centuries. The last fountain, dedicated to Arion, was completed by Ivan Teimer only in 2002. For this occasion, based on a script by Jiří Malaník, Tomáš Hanzlík has written a melodramatic pantomime in which he paraphrases, in a minimalist manner, the famous Water Music by G. F. Händel, the Ich habe genug cantata by J. S. Bach, and Sweet Dreams by P. I. Tchaikovsky.
According to an ancient Greek legend, Arion was a renowned poet and lyre player. When he was returning from his sea journeys, laden with riches gained by singing and playing, he was attacked by the crew, who wanted to rob and murder him. Arion threw himself into the sea, where a dolphin, attracted by his music, took him on its back and brought him safely to shore. At the place where the dolphin carried him out of the waves, Arion had a monument built in the memory of his rescue. The monument has been located in the Upper Square in Olomouc since 2002.
Direction: Sergej Sanža
Musical arrangement: Tomáš Hanzlík
Stage and costume design: Vendula Johnová, Tomáš Hanzlík, Sergej Sanža
20 August Baroque Summer Stage Chrudim
Foto: © Milada Hronová