The Imaginary Invalid

by Molière
German translation: Hans Weigel
Direction: Michael Thalheimer

Argan is terrified of death. To protect himself against it, he painstakingly observes every minute change in his body, on the constant lookout for potential diseases. He has his bowel cleansed on a daily basis, takes unnecessary pills, swallows expensive tonics mixed especially for him and so feeds an entire army of doctors and pharmacists. But it is not just the medics who are after his money: his second wife Béline only pretends to love him whilst secretly plotting for control over his fortune. When Argan wants to force his daughter Angélique to marry into a family of doctors so he can secure round-the-clock treatment whilst at the same time saving money, Angélique asks her maid Toinette for help. Toinette has been observing the household’s goings with a critical eye for some time and begins to plot an intrigue which is intended to finally open Argan’s eyes to his own hypochondria, his parasitic doctors and his deceitful wife ...

Molière’s final play is a grand character study of a man who controls everything around him with his delusions and egomania, an astute analysis of the mechanisms of manipulation and deceit. Molière himself played the title role in his own production at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal in Paris. During the fourth performance, on 17 February 1673, he suffered a violent haemorrhage and died a few hours later.

Michael Thalheimer, who already directed »Tartuffe« at the Schaubühne in 2013, now continues his work on Molière with »The Imaginary Invalid«.


Direction: Michael Thalheimer
Set Design: Olaf Altmann
Costume Design: Michaela Barth
Music: Bert Wrede
Dramaturgy: Maja Zade

Argan: Peter Moltzen
Béline: Jule Böwe
Angélique: Alina Stiegler
Louison: Iris Becher
Béralde: Kay Bartholomäus Schulze
Cléante: Felix Römer
Doktor Diafoirus: Ulrich Hoppe
Thomas Diafoirus: Renato Schuch
Toinette: Regine Zimmermann

Duration: ca. 105 minutes

Premiered on 18 January 2017