written by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
translated by Walter Kaufmann
directed by Jeff Freeman
Emerson– Shakespeare Society
80 Boylston St.
Emily Mercer Witt
This production of Faust was centered on Faust's fall from the high intellectual values that initially drive him to deal with the Devil, into a world of more primal, base elements. This came through in the "magical" sequences: in every spell, cues were added eluding to the primordial elements (fire, air, water, earth) and the darker, animalistic parts of the human spirit.
One of Faust's earliest attempts to conjure up a spirit is wildly successful, but the doctor cannot look upon the elemental forces he has toyed with. The spirit shouts derisively at Faust, and leaves him whimpering piteously in his study.
While out on a walk about town with his student, Faust settles by a statue to discuss the merits of the human condition. Little does he know that the eyes of spirits are upon him...
When Faust unwittingly brings the Devil (cleverly disguised as a poodle) into his home, he finds his chance to find true power-- finally, something to live for and to look forward to! Faust begins to chant as the demon takes up its hellish aspect. He casts three spells of fire, finally quelling the beast with the third, most powerful spell.