Music Projects London, Richard Bernas
The Maharal, a rabbi in sixteenth century Prague, makes a huge man from clay through the power of the Kabbalah. This man, the golem, is meant to stand as an invincible force to protect the innocent and to obey his maker without question. However, the golem cannot be controlled in this way: he develops a sense of curiosity and begins to experience human feelings – in particular, towards the Maharal’s daughter, Miriam. A wounded figure, Ometh, a Promethean figure of hope and conscience, pursues the golem in the hope that they may work together, but the Maharal will not allow this to detract from his golem's mission and blocks the union. As far as the people from the town are concerned, the golem is a suspicious stranger, and they treat him scornfully as an outsider. They prepare to strike out against their miserable condition, but the golem's strength turns against those he has come to protect and he kills an innocent man with his axe. The Maharal has to accept that the living man he made must be returned to clay.