The Master of Santiago



  • A play by the French dramatist Henri de Montherlant (1896 - 1972).First performed in 1948 in Paris, where it ran for more than a year,the work is very much in the classical tradition of Corneille andRacine. The 1957 London production, starring and directed by DonaldWolfit did not find favour with British critics, who foundthe work too bleak, with one calling it "unrelievedly seriousand sombre." Wolfit even tried, without success, to bar criticKenneth Tynan from the theater.

    With its simple action and complex psychology, The Masterof Santiago is considered Montherlant's most representative work.The emphasis falls on the sacrifices made by the main characters inorder to live up to their own high ideals. The title character, DonAlvaro, is supported by his daughter Mariana when he refuses to compromisehis pride and principles in order to regain his fortunes.