Theatre, 1955

Dom Juan

Sganarelle, Dom Juan's servant, is a focal point in Bergman's first staging of Molière.
'A masterpiece.'
Ebbe Linde, Dagens Nyheter

About the production

The Don Juan production was another victory for Ingmar Bergman and his ensemble. Thought not unanimous, the critics were fascinated by the opening pantomime and by the element of pastiche which made the production a lesson in theatre history. They also commented on the morality play approach, which displayed human situations and actions in Christian terms of saved or lost souls.

An important theme in Bergman's production of Molière's play was the unmasking of Dom Juan, which was demonstrated in an added introductory pantomime, where Dom Juan had his elegant night gown and cap removed, revealing for a moment a bald wig, tight pants, ruffled coat and a sword, the audience immediately knew that Dom Juan is a fake as he sets out on his obsessive erotic conquest. Bergman saw Molière's play as a morality play in which Dom Juan's punishment in hell was a given from the start.

Sources

  • The Ingmar Bergman Archives.
  • Birgitta Steene, Ingmar Bergman: A Reference Guide, (Amsterdam University Press, 2005).

Collaborators