Rosa Luxemburg

Debut: Genoa, port, call room, February 12, 1976 (RaiTeche movie)

Direction Luigi Squarzina
Assistant director  Marco Sciaccaluga
Assistant director Giulio Trevisani
Set and costume Gianfranco Padovani
Music Roman Vlad
Production Teatro Stabile di Genova

Characters and performers

Lenin / Karl Liebknecht Omero Antonutti
Rosa Luxemburg Adriana Asti 
Ignaz Aver / a worker Enrico Ardizzone 
The clown / a worker Renato Berni 
Emil Eichhorn / Kamo / a white Guard / a worker Patrizio Caracchi
The bourgeois journalist / Menshevik delegate / Gustav Lübeck Franco Carli
Karl Radek / the trousers (Krupp) / a worker Donatello Falchi
Rosi Wolfstein / a prostitute Jackie Gerbino 
Luisa Kautsky / Clara Zetkin / la Kruppskaja / mercy Rachele Ghersi
Leo Jogiches / a worker Alessandro Haber 
Hans Diefenbach / the lieutenant of the white Guards a worker Massimo Lopez
A worker / Kostia Zetkin Massimo Mesciulam 
Friedrich Ebert / a prostitute / the cardinal (a landowner) Camillo Milli
Gustav Noske / the prison inspector / a worker Maggiorino Porta 
Paul Levi / Massimo Gorki / a worker Carlo Reali
A worker / a prostitute / a bourgeois Isabella Russo
The captain of the White Guards / the director of the prison / a worker Gianfranco Saletta
Philipp Scheidemann / Professor Wolff / a worker  Claudio Sora
Lunaciarsky Anatoly / a White Guard / a worker Giulio Trevisani
The troubadour (expressionist poet) / a worker Vanni Valenza
A madwoman / the bajadera / a worker Tatiana Winteler 
Karl Kautsky / the chaplain / the principal of Warsaw / a bourgeois Loris Zanchi

It is the last of the historical-dialectical shows created by Squarzina. Written with Vico Faggi after four years of strenuous work, and based on extensive research material and on a comparison of various sources, this is neither document-theatre nor political theatre. It is a play that re-elaborates the document through drama, bringing events back to life through passion and scenic innovation, in keeping with theatrical standards. These are expressed by Padovani’s Brechtian set design with iron platforms that are visibly moved; by the scenes of great theatricality like the ones with the Amazon in a top hat; with the clown at the factory meetings; and with the Carnival ball. Even the scene of the meeting between Lenin and Luxemburg is not limited to documents. Although referencing precise crucial issues, such as the role of the party, the relationship with the masses, revolutionary discipline, and political spontaneity, the scene aims to cast theatrical light on the political and human connotations of two different personalities: Lenin’s cold lucidity and conscious self-confidence, that will win, and his impassioned ideology, in which there is always doubt, that will be defeated. Squarzina would later say: “We wanted to make the audience understand that Rosa’s murder by the priest has many analogies with our own time; we thus had to free her from myth and turn her into a living character”.

“Noi volevamo far capire al pubblico che l’assassinio di Rosa da parte del potere ha molte analogie con il nostro tempo, perciò dovevamo farla uscire dal mito e farla ridiventare un personaggio vivo”.

Luigi Squarzina

From E. Testoni, Dialoghi con Luigi Squarzina, Firenze, Le Lettere, 2015, p. 182







Interview with Luigi Squarzina

We thank Teatro Nazionale di Genova for the concession of the use of photographic material.