A. The Theatrical Lodgers
Schiffl, a weaver
Susanne, his wife
Lorbeerstamm, lead actor
Puff, comedian, both part of an ensemble at a provincial theatre
Dürr, a poet
B. Quodlibet in the gothic style with Chinese emblems
Joan of Arc
Johann Herzig, a servant from Vienna
Panpau, a Mandarin
Peki, his daughter
Philipp II., King of Spain
Duke von Alba
Count von Lerma
Duke von Medina Sidonia, Admiral
Altoum, the fabulous emperor of China
Turandot, his daughter
Zelima, a slave of Turandot’s
Zin-tsung, Tschao, Hiau-Toung, Oa-Ung, doctors
Don Carlos, a Spanish infant
Mandarin and Chinese people, knights.
Prologue: The Theatrical Lodgers
The lead actor, Lorbeerstamm, and comedian, Puff, live together in
one room, and learning and reciting their lines at the same time,
almost come to blows.
Susanne enters and tries to calm them down – she would like to get rid
of Puff, as she isn’t at all enamoured of his repetoire, but since he always
pays his rent on time, has no grounds for doing so. By contrast, Lorbeerstamm
almost never pays his rent, and Susanne refrains from demanding it. Susannne’s
husband, Schiffl sees things quite differently; Lorbeerstamm’s smooth talk
has no effect on him. Asking what the argument was about, Schiffl manages to
rekindle it, with Susanne supporting Lorbeerstamm and Schiffl supporting Puff.
Puff ends the argument with a peace offer of a glass of wine. Schiffl comes up
with an idea, which he proposes to the poet, Dürr. In return for waiving
his rent, Schiffl would like him to come up with a medley of old plays put together
for the local theatre. At first Dürr refuses, but when Schiffl gives him
30 Gilders he agrees to have something ready by the next morning.
Part One: ‘Quodlibet’ in
the gothic style with Chinese emblems
Steffel and Hanns work together at an iron-forge. Hanns says ‘I do
as my master commands without thinking twice about it’. Hence when
a knight rides too close to the forge, smoking, in spite of their warnings,
Steffel and Hanns
don’t hesitate in throwing him into the furnace. Nor does Joan of Arc
hesitate in taking out her sword and attacking a black knight she meets.
This leads Don
Juan, who has sworn her his love, to reject her, swearing he will never marry.
Meanwhile at the castle of Madrid, Alba is interrogating a stranger, Käsperle
the clown, who claims he was suddenly transported there through the air on
a lion. He is ordered to stay in the hall until they come to a decision about
fate. While Käsperle is waiting, he meets Philipp, the king of Spain,
and introduces himself as the Marquis of Posa. Philipp however sees through
and calls the guards. At that moment, a messenger arrives with the news that
Phillip’s son Carlos has fallen in love with Princess Turandot. He
must now solve three riddles, in order to gain her hand in marriage. If he
wrong answer, he will have his head chopped off. Philipp sends Käsperle
to help Carlos. In the great hall of the palace of Peking, Turandot shows
him the three picture puzzles he must solve. Whilst Carlos has no idea even
begin to solve them, Käsperle does so with ease.
The text of the remaining
two parts is lost.