The Servant of Two Masters is a ripe fruit of commedie dell'arte, possessing traditional characters and situations. It takes place within a narrow family framework, with the main event being a betrothal that is complicated by the servant Truffaldino, wily and dull-witted at the same time. He sets in motion a comedy of mistaken identities and misunderstandings, driven by his eternal hunger, through unexpected peripetia up to the happy ending. He is surrounded by stock characters – commedie dell'arte masks: the careworn gaffer Pantalone, a sapient doctor, and their children in love, an adventurous couple of lovers, the innkeeper Brighella, the maiden Smeraldina. In our staging Truffaldino is played by Miroslav Donutil, who has developed the improvisation tradition of commedie dell'arte much to the audience’s delight. The production has been in our repertoire for more than a decade, celebrating an incredible 380th rerun in December 2007, yet it still plays to packed houses. (The only play in the history of the National Theatre Drama to have experienced more reruns – 403 to be precise – was Örkény’s Cat’s Play, with Dana Medřická in the lead role.)
Drama in czech language.
Photo: Hana Smejkalová
Approximate running time, including intermission: 3 hours, one 20-minute intermission