WILHELM TELL ***
Produced by Tapio Riikonen and David Widger
By Frederich Schiller
Translated by Theodore Martin
HERMANN GESSLER, Governor of Schwytz and Uri. WERNER, Baron of Attinghausen, free noble of Switzerland. ULRICH VON RUDENZ, his Nephew.
WERNER STAUFFACHER, | CONRAD HUNN, | HANS AUF DER MAUER, | JORG IM HOFE, | People of Schwytz. ULRICH DER SCHMIDT, | JOST VON WEILER, | ITEL REDING, |
WALTER FURST, | WILHELM TELL, | ROSSELMANN, the Priest, | PETERMANN, Sacristan, | People of Uri. KUONI, Herdsman, | WERNI, Huntsman, | RUODI, Fisherman, |
ARNOLD OF MELCHTHAL, | CONRAD BAUMGARTEN, | MEYER VON SARNEN, | STRUTH VON WINKELRIED, | People of Unterwald. KLAUS VON DER FLUE, | BURKHART AM BUHEL, | ARNOLD VON SEWA, |
PFEIFFER OF LUCERNE. KUNZ OF GERSAU. JENNI, Fisherman's Son. SEPPI, Herdsman's Son. GERTRUDE, Stauffacher's Wife. HEDWIG, Wife of Tell, daughter of Furst. BERTHA OF BRUNECK, a rich heiress.
ARMGART, | MECHTHILD, | Peasant women. ELSBETH, | HILDEGARD, |
WALTER, | Tell's sons. WILHELM, |
FRIESSHARDT, | Soldiers. LEUTHOLD, |
RUDOLPH DER HARRAS, Gessler's master of the horse. JOHANNES PARRICIDA, Duke of Suabia. STUSSI, Overseer. THE MAYOR OF URI. A COURIER. MASTER STONEMASON, COMPANIONS, AND WORKMEN. TASKMASTER. A CRIER. MONKS OF THE ORDER OF CHARITY. HORSEMEN OF GESSLER AND LANDENBERG. MANY PEASANTS; MEN AND WOMEN FROM THE WALDSTETTEN.
A high, rocky shore of the lake of Lucerne opposite Schwytz. The lake makes a bend into the land; a hut stands at a short distance from the shore; the fisher boy is rowing about in his boat. Beyond the lake are seen the green meadows, the hamlets, and arms of Schwytz, lying in the clear sunshine. On the left are observed the peaks of the Hacken, surrounded with clouds; to the right, and in the remote distance, appear the Glaciers. The Ranz des Vaches, and the tinkling of cattle-bells, continue for some time after the rising of the curtain.
FISHER BOY (sings in his boat). Melody of the Ranz des Vaches.
The clear, smiling lake wooed to bathe in its deep, A boy on its green shore had laid him to sleep; Then heard he a melody Flowing and soft, And sweet, as when angels Are singing aloft. And as thrilling with pleasure he wakes from his rest, The waters are murmuring over his breast; And a voice from the deep cries, "With me thou must go, I charm the young shepherd, I lure him below."
HERDSMAN (on the mountains). Air.--Variation of the Ranz des Vaches.
Farewell, ye green meadows, Farewell, sunny shore, The herdsman must leave you, The summer is o'er. We go to the hills, but you'll see us again, When the cuckoo is calling, and wood-notes are gay, When flowerets are blooming in dingle and plain, And the brooks sparkle up in the sunshine of May. Farewell, ye green meadows, Farewell, sunny shore, The herdsman must leave you, The summer is o'er.
CHAMOIS HUNTER (appearing on the top of a cliff). Second Variation of the Ranz des Vaches.
On the heights peals the thunder, and trembles the bridge, The huntsman bounds on by the dizzying ridge, Undaunted he hies him O'er ice-covered wild, Where leaf never budded, Nor spring ever smiled; And beneath him an ocean of mist, where his eye No longer the dwellings of man can espy; Through the parting clouds only The earth can be seen, Far down 'neath the vapor The meadows of green.
[A change comes over the landscape. A rumbling, cracking noise is heard among the mountains. Shadows of clouds sweep across the scene.
[RUODI, the fisherman, comes out of his cottage. WERNI, the huntsman, descends from the rocks. KUONI, the shepherd, enters, with a milk pail on his shoulders, followed by SERPI, his assistant.
RUODI. Bestir thee, Jenni, haul the boat on shore. The grizzly Vale-king  comes, the glaciers moan, The lofty Mytenstein  draws on his hood, And from the Stormcleft chilly blows the wind; The storm will burst before we are prepared.
KUONI. 'Twill rain ere long; my sheep browse eagerly, And Watcher there is scraping up the earth.
WERNI. The fish are leaping, and the water-hen Dives up and down. A storm is coming on.
KUONI (to his boy). Look, Seppi, if the cattle are not straying.
SEPPI. There goes brown Liesel, I can hear her bells.
KUONI. Then all are safe; she ever ranges farthest.
RUODI. You've a fine yoke of bells there, master herdsman.
WERNI. And likely cattle, too. Are they your own?
KUONI. I'm not so rich. They are the noble lord's Of Attinghaus, and trusted to my care.