by Fritz Hochwaelder.
Adapted by Kitty Black.
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(Second performance: Thursday at 7.15)
With William Sylvester
A play by Fritz Hochwaelder
Adapted by Kitty Black
In the rough-and-tumbril of the French Revolution, the first essential of living was to keep one's head - and Citizen Fouquier-Tinville has, in both meanings of the phrase, kept his. As Public Prosecutor he has been the dread instrument of the Reign of Terror which has brought hundreds of victims to the guillotine. His ruthlessness has earned him security. He can look back on his prosecution of the proud Marie Antoinette and on the fall of the early leaders of the Revolution. Danton, who had introduced the arbitrary tribunal of death, has become the victim of his own invention; Robespierre himself has followed his predecessors to the block. Fouquier-Tinville remains.
But his work is about to enter a new phase As the play opens, the reins of government have passed to the hands of Tallien - or, more accurately, of Madame Theresia Tallien - and the ' Terror' is drawing to a close. To the relief of the Public Executioner there are to be no more mass executions. There is but one further task for the Prosecutor, one last enemy of the Republic who must die. He holds high government office, but Madame Tallien is powerful enough to demand his death. The case can be left to Fouquier-Tinville. (Kenneth A. Hurren)