First Mystery Drama

Front Cover
Trafford Publishing, 2003 - Drama - 146 pages

The four Mystery Dramas were created, produced and printed one each year, one after the other, from 1910-1913. They took place in different theatres in Munich but always in the month of August. The writing of the dramas, the creating of the scenery, the making of the costumes, the learning of roles, the general directing, the organization of the printing and all the other inummerable things connected with such a major production happened within a matter of weeks before the main performance. There was a literal whirlwind of activity, and it is reported that often the scenes were written during the night before a scheduled rehearsal, and that at five or six in the morning a boy would come from the press to pick up the manuscript for the printing of the scene for that day's rehearsal.

All this activity centered around Rudolf Steiner who gave directions or advice on every aspect of the production down to the smallest details. He not only wrote the dramas themselves, but also indicated how such soul and spiritual pictures could be presented and played on stage.

A fifth drama was also planned, which was to include scenes from Ancient Greece and its mystery centers, but the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914 meant that it had to be postponed. Rudolf Steiner's early death in 1925 resulted in it never coming to production, nor ever being written down.

 

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About the author (2003)

Austrian-born Rudolf Steiner was a noted Goethe (see Vol. 2) scholar and private student of the occult who became involved with Theosophy in Germany in 1902, when he met Annie Besant (1847--1933), a devoted follower of Madame Helena P. Blavatsky (1831--1891). In 1912 he broke with the Theosophists because of what he regarded as their oriental bias and established a system of his own, which he called Anthroposophy (anthro meaning "man"; sophia sophia meaning "wisdom"), a "spiritual science" he hoped would restore humanism to a materialistic world. In 1923 he set up headquarters for the Society of Anthroposophy in New York City. Steiner believed that human beings had evolved to the point where material existence had obscured spiritual capacities and that Christ had come to reverse that trend and to inaugurate an age of spiritual reintegration. He advocated that education, art, agriculture, and science be based on spiritual principles and infused with the psychic powers he believed were latent in everyone. The world center of the Anhthroposophical Society today is in Dornach, Switzerland, in a building designed by Steiner. The nonproselytizing society is noted for its schools.

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