The Volga Boatman

1
The Russian Revolution - -
 words which have made 
history! But ours is not a
story of a Crusade, a Struggle
or a Victory. It pleads no
cause - it takes no sides.

2
It is a story of people - -
a Prince, a Lady and a Volga 
Boatman; worlds apart one day
- seized by the throats the
next and plunged into a mael-
strom of flame and terror. To
explain Revolution is no task 
of ours - Man cannot explain it.

3
Russia, before the
 Revolution - - -
a proud old castle
on the banks of the
       Volga.

4
And, sprawled at its foot,
  the gay disorder of
a Tartar camp - reckless,
roving creatures - - a law
     unto themselves.

5
Stephan - - 
 a dumb blacksmith -
 arms of steel and a
 tongue of lead which
 all his strength can-
 not make speak.
  - Theodore Kosloff

6
Mariusha - -
 a woman of the Tartars -
 reaching out greedily
 for Life with eager,
 dirty hands.
          - Julia Faye

7
"You stole my goods -
 you spawn of the devil!
 You thieving rats of
      Tartars!"

8
"You can't hammer
 a woman into Love
 like one of your 
 horseshoes - - you
 tongueless fool!"

9
Pulling and straining 
 against the tide - the
Volga Boatmen - hauling 
great cargoes up and
down the river - - the
human mules of Russia.

10
- tired feet - bruised
    and homeless -

11
- Singing, not to
feel the leather
  cut so deep.

12
Feodor - whose broad
 breast and ringing
voice never tired - -
because he dreamed
a dream of Freedom.
       - William Boyd

13 [with musical notation]
OURS A SONG OF WORK AND HOPE
AS WE BEND ABOVE THE ROPE
VOLGA MOTHER VOLGA BROTHER
UPWARD -- ONWARD IN THE SUN
      WE ARE ONE

14
Dimitri Orloff - -
 a Prince of Russia -
 an Officer of the Czar's
 Guard - but today, just
 a man waiting for a 
 woman's "yes" or "no".
         - Victor Varconi

15
And the woman -
 Princess Vera - - in that
 delightful feminine state
 of intending to say "yes"
 but acting "no".
          - Elinor Fair

16
"I'm going to hold
 you my prisoner
 until you give me
   your answer!"

17
"Would you hold the
   woman you love
    with chains?"

18
"A Tartar fortune teller!
 Perhaps the cards will
 show you have a rival!"

19
"I see a handsome 
 Officer who loves 
 you - you should
    marry him."

20
"Blood!"

21
"That voice seems the
 very Soul of Russia!"

22
"A charming sentiment,
 my dear - but the soul
 has a body, in this case
 a dirty one. Come and
   see for yourself."

23
"Can you find the
 'soul of Russia' in
 these poor animals?"

24
"Courage, little comrade!
 The rope of Bondage
 is wearing thin - soon,
    it will break!"

25
"It was your song
 I heard above the
 others. It seemed
 to carry a message."

26
"Your kind would not
 understand the message
     of my song!"

27
"Wipe that off!"

28
"Wipe that off!"

29
"We Boatmen wear
 a decoration - too!"

30
"- - somebody we'll
 tell you to wipe 
    that off!"

31
"Our blood flows now -
 later other blood
    will flow."

32
Sparks from the
  smouldering 
   fire - -

33
"Russia has been
 ruled too long by
 useless, perfumed
 hands like these!"

34
In the Castle above
 the smouldering
volcano, a betrothal
is sealed by the old
Prince Nikita.
     - Robert Edeson

35
"Hey, you dogs - -
 get back into the
    harness!"

36
"Why won't you 
   love me?"

37
"There is no room in
 my life for a woman.
 I belong to Russia and
 the day of Freedom!"

38
"Be sure that Russia
 doesn't shave its 
 beard and turn into
    a Princess!"

39
"Listen only to
 my song - the
 song of love!"

40
"That they may
 hold my heart
 in safe-keeping."

41
"That they may see
 nothing but my love."

42
"And your lips - -
 that they may not
 forget the touch
     of mine."

43
Then the angry buzz and
 simmer - The uneasy tossing
and moaning of a huge Russia -
men's nerves are worn out -
men's hearts are desperate -
    now it shall end!

44
Now two great armies rise up
 in a death grapple for Russia.
The White Army, aristocrats,
softened by power and luxury -
The Red Army, peasant men
and women in a patchwork of
uniforms - hardened by hunger
and toil - - the voice of new
Russia crying for her rights.

45
A few months lower the flags 
of the White Army dangerously
near the dust - a few months 
lift Feodor, the Volga Boatman,
high in the Red Army - - and
send him to recruit among the
    people of the Volga.

46
"There are seven names
 that do not answer.
  Where are they?"

47
"They're servants up
 in the Castle of
 your Princess - -
 forbidden to leave."

48
"Let us call at this
 Castle, comrades, with
 a bouquet of guns!"

49
And in a proud old 
 Castle on the hill -
a proud old Prince
scorns the revolution.

50
"Father, look! They
 are coming here -
     for us!"

51
"My dear, dinner
   is served."

52
"A droshky and three
 horses are hidden in 
 the first clump of trees
 - in it are peasant's
 clothes for disguise!"

53
"You must pardon
 our being so late
   for dinner."

54
"Serve us food."

55
"Come, comrades, the
 Prince and Princess
 are entertaining us
    this evening!"

56
"Do whatever they say -
 it's our only chance!"

57
"Serve us food."

58
"Hey you, give that
 tray to the Prince -
 he's going to wait
 on you for a change!"

59
"Taste it and see if
 it needs seasoning."

60
"It is seasoned
   perfectly."

61
"Perfect!"

62
"I never knew skin
 could be white
   like that!"

63
"Comrades, let us
 all drink to the
   new Russia."

64
"She didn't drink!"

65
"Wipe that off!"

66
"Wipe that off!"

67
"Why tire your legs
 chasing him when
 there's a real prize
 inside? It was the
 woman's fault - - -
   make her pay!"

68
"It doesn't matter
 about my life - -
 I've saved yours
   for Russia!"

69
"One of you will
 give your life for
 his - I don't care
 which one. Settle
 it between you!"

70
"It is better that
 I die than be
 left to the will
 of these people!"

71
"It is decided - I am
   the one to die!"

72
"The girl is right.
 A young life for 
  a young life!"

73
"We're not a mob, we're
 an Army! Line up a
 firing squad and clear
      the room."

74
"Does it take a whole
 army to shoot one
 woman? A man could 
   do it alone!"

75
"You're right! We can't
 waste six cartridges on
 one woman - ammunition
    costs too much!"

76
"Will you close the
 doors - - - or am I
 to be shot as a
 spectacle to amuse
   these people?"

77
"We'll give you five
 minutes - - if you
 haven't shot her by
 then we'll come in 
 and do it for you!"

78
"You have five minutes
 to say your prayers.
 You die at nine o'clock!"

79
"I am not used to 
    waiting!"

80
"We've waited five
 hundred years for
 liberty - you can
 wait five minutes 
    for death!"

81
"You have four
 minutes left!"

82
"You sang it it to give
 you courage - why
 shouldn't I? Are we
 not both Russians?"

83
"Roses - perfume of
 Romance and Life!"

84
"Hey, what are you
 doing with that girl 
     in there?"

85
"You have two
 minutes left!"

86
"This may steady 
  your nerves!"

87
"I drink to the
  old Russia!"

88
"Drink the rest yourself.
 It is your hand that
 needs to be steady,
     not mine!"

89
"You can't bribe me!"

90
"I'm not going to bribe
 you, Mr. Boatman - - I'm
 going to reward you!
 A Distinguished Bravery
 Medal for shooting a
  defenseless woman!"

91
"Hey, Feodor, do you
   need any help?"

92
"You have thirty
  seconds left!"

93
"- - for your convenience!"

94
"By God, you've got 
      courage!"

95
"Hey, if you don't kill
 that woman now, we'll
    do it for you!"

96
"Come, comrades,
  it is done!"

97
"Let's throw her in 
    the Volga!"

98
"I'll throw her in
    the Volga!"

99
"Stop him, you fools -
  he didn't kill her!"

100
"That's not blood -
   that's wine!"

101
"There are horses 
  hidden below!"

102
"Why did you save me,
    Mr. Boatman?"

103
"Because I couldn't put
 a bullet through your
  damned white skin!"

104
An inn, huddled near the
 Border between the White
and Red Armies, has changed
flags with every advance and
retreat of these two forces.
   This night it is under the
Red flag.

105
"Who is that woman?
  She looks like
     nobility!"

106
"Landlady, my wife
 and I are tired from
 long travel. Take us
    to our room."

107
"I've kept an inn too
 many years, comrade,
 not to know a bride 
     and groom!"

108
"You needn't be afraid.
 I wouldn't touch you
 if you were the last 
   woman on earth!"

109
"That means Leader!
 It should read Traitor.
 For you I've betrayed
 my comrades and my
       Cause!"

110
"The White Army!
 Run for your lives!"

111
"You have been very
 wonderful, Mr. Boatman."

112
"Get out quickly!
 The White Army
    is here."

113
"They're your people -
 you're in safe hands 
         now!"

114
"I hope to God I never 
    see you again!"

115
"It's Prince Dimitri, 
     your man!"

116
"But, Excellency, my only
 room is occupied by a
 bride and groom - such a
 loving couple. You would
 not have me disturb their
     wedding night!"

117
"Dimitri will kill you
 if he finds us here
      together!"

118
"Clear that bedroom
      for me!"

119
"Don't fire on them -
 they're my people!"

120
"Take me to your 
 Commander - I am
 the Princess Vera!"

121
"We've found a Red
 leader and his bride.
 May we have the
 woman to amuse us
 in the wine room?"

122
"Yes, do to their
 women what they 
 have done to ours!"

123
"Gentlemen - - we have
 just robbed this lady
 from her bridegroom.
 Let us try to console
  her for her loss!"

124
"You Reds have regarded
 women as the spoils of
 war. Perhaps you will
 feel differently when you
 see your own woman!"

125
"You dogs! This is
 the Princess Vera -
   my betrothed!"

126
"If she's a Princess
 and your betrothed -
 why was she locked
 in the bedroom with
  that Red Leader?"

127
"He passed me as his
 wife only to save
 my life! He means
  nothing to me!"

128
"This man means nothing
 to you - - absolutely
       nothing?"

129
"Absolutely nothing!"

130
"Tomorrow night is the
 State Ball at Jaroslav.
 We shall add to the
 other festivities the
   execution of this
     Red Leader!"

131
The city of Jaroslav -
  clinging to both
banks of the Volga - -
last jewel in the crown
   of old Russia.

132
The old Imperial Palace -
 headquarters of the 
White Army - where the last
unconquered aristocrats
bravely dance on the brink
    of a Red abyss.

133
But, under the beat of
 the music is another
sound - - the waters of
the Volga churned into
a threatening roar! The
advance of the Red Army!

134
"You see, there's no
 difference between
 your people and
 mine - - it takes a
 whole Army to shoot
      one man."

135
"With death so close,
 I can tell you what
 I could not say in 
      life - -"

136
"- - I love you - -
 with the last beat
    of my heart!"

137
"Do you hear the
 Boatmen singing
 the old Song?"

138
"I have loved you
 better than any-
 thing on earth - -"

139
"- - but if you stay 
 at his side, those
 men are going to 
 fire, just the same!"

140
"You have suffered at
 the hands of these
 people, Comrade - -
    judge them!"

141
"He can't judge for us!
 He betrayed us once -
 he may betray us again!"

142
"He shall prove
 his loyalty by
 his judgment of
  these people."

143
"Put the men in the
 boat harness - let them
 pull us the long miles
 up the Volga to the
   Great Tribunal!"

144
"And put the women
   in with them!"

145
"And put their women
     with them!"

146
"If you put this
 woman in the 
 harness - - I go
  beside her!"

147
"Here's a White beauty
 they've overlooked!"

148
"Help - help me, Stephan!
 Tell them who I am - -
  tell them who I am!"

149
Pulling and straining
 against the tide -
the flower of Russia
harnessed like cattle
 to a Volga boat -

150 [with musical notation]
OURS A SONG OF WORK AND HOPE
AS WE BEND ABOVE THE ROPE
VOLGA MOTHER VOLGA BROTHER
UPWARD -- ONWARD IN THE SUN
      WE ARE ONE

151
Before the great
 Tribunal - - - -
a Prince, a Lady and
 a Volga Boatman.

152
"If I have labored for
 our Cause, if I deserve
 anything at your hands -
 I ask the life of this
 woman, because I love
        her - -"

153
"- - and the life of
 this man, because
  he loves her!"

154
"In return for your
 services to our
 Cause, we will be
 lenient with these
  prisoners - -"

155
"- - we give them the 
 choice of joining us -
 or exile from Russia."

156
"You will need the
 blood of old Russia
 to help you build
  the new Russia."

157
"And for me - exile."

158
"Ours a Song of
        Work and Hope.
 Upward - Onward
        in the Sun,
 We are ONE!"



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