Franz Helm

Der Stein der Weisen
Ein endliches Volksstück mit Prolog, 3 Akten, 1 Nachsatz und Gesang
6 D, 13 H, St, Verwandlungsdek
UA: 11.10.1989 · Staatstheater (Kleines Haus), Darmstadt · Directed by: Wolf-Dietrich Sprenger
There has been a suicide in the village. While digging the grave, the undertaker discovers the philosopher’s stone, but only the audience knows it. The undertaker includes the stone in his collection of minerals. It’s carnival, the village is celebrating: they’re trying to make the constant festivities look humorous. All characters are wearing costumes. The mayor is drinking, even though he already had two heart attacks. Then, the third attack happens, but the mayor gets up and goes home. The event of immortality is now repeated in several versions.
A famous doctor arrives in the village to get to the bottom of this. He has a thing for experiments, for he already experimented on people in Poland during the Second World War.
The local doctor experimented on himself and survived all the experiments. The fascist doctor tries as well and dies immediately. Now it’s clear: you have to be from this village.

Hotels are built, tourism arrives, a second Lourdes develops. Suddenly, people from the village are abducted by the military. The Presidents of the United States and the Soviet Union, along with the Pope, take over the roles of the abducted.
Peace negotiations are started, but because they can’t find a solution, both sides plan for the emergency. Missiles are readied; the countdown is running. But the undertaker, who has had enough, destroys the philosopher’s stone and the rest of his collection. Everyone dies, corpses pile up on stage and the undertaker says: “Peace”.