Surrealism-Plays is a site devoted to the history and creative works of the Surrealist Movement, as well as the anti-tradition of avant-garde theatre.

AVANT-GARDE THEATRE IMAGES




RUSSIA



Vsevolod Emilevich Meyerhold

Meyerhold

Meyerhold Production
Scene from the 1922 Moscow production of The Magnanimous Cuckold
directed by Meyerhold.


Meyerhold Set
A model of the set designed by artist Liubov Popova.



Vladimir Mayakovsky

Mayakovsky

Bathhouse
A 1930 Moscow production of Mayakovsky's satirical play The Bathhouse
directed by Meyerhold.




GERMANY



Ernst Toller

Ernst Toller

Toller Stage Production
Toller's expressionist play Transfiguration staged in Berlin in 1919.



Georg Kaiser


Georg Kaiser

Gas
A 1922 production of Kaiser's Gas performed at
the Bolshoi Drama Theater in St. Petersberg.




Bertolt Brecht


Bertolt Brecht Lehrstuck (1929)

A Man's A Man (1931)
Top right: The clown scene from Brecht's Lehrstück performed
in Baden Baden in 1929. Above: Brecht's 1931 Berlin revival of
Mann ist Mann starring Peter Lorre as Gaily Gay.




POLAND



Stanislaw Ignacy Witkiewicz



The Cuttle Fish
A character in Witkiewicz's play The Cuttlefish, revived at Circot 2
in Crakow in 1956. The production was directed by Tadeusz Kantor.



Tadeusz Kantor

Tadeusz Kantor

The Dead Class
Kantor's The Dead Class (1975).



DADA & SURREALISM



Cabaret Voltaire
Dadaist Hugo Ball at the Cabaret Voltaire in 1916.


Salvador Dalí preparing the set and costumes for a production
of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Photograph by Philippe Halsman.




Tristan Tzara Artaud Roger Vitrac Robert Desnos
Left to Right: Tristan Tzara, Antonin Artaud, Roger Vitrac and Robert Desnos.



Important Precursors

Raymond Roussel Guillaume Apollinaire Pierre Albert-Birot
Left to Right: Alfred Jarry, Raymond Roussel, Guillaume Apollinaire & Pierre
Albert-Birot.



THEATRE OF THE ABSURD



Samuel Beckett

Samuel Beckett


Waiting for Godot
A scene from the original 1953 Paris production of Beckett's Waiting For Godot.



BUTOH



Butoh

Butoh
Contemporary Butoh performers.


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SANCTUS

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Sanctus Fumigaci by Todd Bash


"Todd Bash is one of the few contemporary playwrights who captures the spirit of surrealism. In fact, surrealist figures from the past, such as Luis Buñuel, Salvador Dalí and Paul Eluard, appear as characters in a couple of his plays. Dream-like, funny, and sometimes disturbing, SANCTUS FUMIGACI (which, in English, loosely translates to "Holy Smoke") is recommended for fans of avant-garde literature and experimental theater."