The Mad Scene

On a night in 1793, Marie Grosholtz (the future Madame Tussaud) searches a Paris cemetery for the freshly guillotined head of Queen Marie Antoinette. While the young sculptress makes a plaster cast of the face, she engages with a conversation with the decapitated queen. Back in her workshop, she adds Marie Antoinette to a wax exhibit that already includes the firebrand journalist Jean-Paul Marat and his...
On a night in 1793, Marie Grosholtz (the future Madame Tussaud) searches a Paris cemetery for the freshly guillotined head of Queen Marie Antoinette. While the young sculptress makes a plaster cast of the face, she engages with a conversation with the decapitated queen. Back in her workshop, she adds Marie Antoinette to a wax exhibit that already includes the firebrand journalist Jean-Paul Marat and his assassin, Charlotte Corday; they will soon be joined by the revolutionary zealot Maximilien Robespierre. As the Reign of Terror rages around them, the wax figures come to life and argue among themselves and with their creator about revolution, freedom, tyranny, power, history, personhood, and other themes as vital today as they were in Revolutionary Paris. By the end of the play, Napoleon rules France, and Marie Grosholtz has moved her exhibit to London and transformed herself into Madame Tussaud. While Tussaud dances with a mute wax figure of Napoleon, the other figures become something more than mere hallucinations in the mind of their creator.
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The Mad Scene

Development History

  • Workshop
    ,
    Yorick Theatre Company, Ridiculous Theatrical Company, Theatre St. John's
    ,
    2021