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Scene "Titus and Salome"


3 minutes

Preparation time

2-3 lesson units

Number of roles



from 9 years

Language level


Scene type

funny, love scene


Loaf of bread, knife, stick for "herding geese”


Titus and Salome Pockerl meet each other here for the first time. This means that in this scene we are brought closer to the main characters and learn some things about Titus' fate.

What connects them? Both have red hair, which was not yet an ideal of beauty at the time - on the contrary: both are often and gladly excluded by their surroundings. They are considered outsiders.

Information about the play - The Talisman (Nestroy)
Background knowledge on the author - Johann Nestroy


Number of acts: 3
Position: Act 1, Scene 8. In total, Act 1 consists of 23 scenes.

We are here relatively at the beginning of the first act (in the 8th scene). We have already met Salome when she is the only one not asked to dance in the second scene and then confides her sadness and anger about her situation (red hair) to the audience in the third scene. Titus had also made his first appearance before that and he sings about the same fate in the 5th scene.


Titus Feuerfuchs is a red-haired young man who is an outsider because of his striking hair colour. He wants a normal life where he is not disadvantaged and is looking for work. The unemployed journeyman barber (Friseurgeselle) is nimble and eloquent and manages, through creativity and a bit of luck, to rise socially within a very short time.

Salome Pockerl is a red-haired girl from the village. She too is an outsider and often feels it. She is kind, good-natured and loyal; when she meets Titus and realises that he is in the same situation as she is, she is immediately taken with the young man. Throughout the play she stands by him faithfully and is rewarded at the end when Titus decides to marry her.


The goose-keeper Salome is sitting by the well, cutting herself a piece of bread, when Titus appears. She immediately notices that he also has red hair and starts a conversation with him. Salome likes Titus from the start for this reason and she admires him. He finds it a little strange that she finds everything about him beautiful. Then he opens up his tale of woe to her: he has no money, no job and his cousin has sent him away because of his red hair and doesn't want to help him any more.

Salome decides to get Titus a job with her brother.

At the end of the scene, an accident almost happens, but Salome and Titus react in a flash and Titus thus becomes a lifesaver.


Titus. Salome entering from the right, without noticing Titus, has a large half loaf of bread and a knife in her hand.

 Salome. I must drink, I have a stomach ache. (She goes to the well and drinks.)

 Titus (to himself). It's in my stomach! Oh, if I could share this blissful feeling with her!

 Salome (noticing him, to herself). A strange young person - and the beautiful hair, just like me!

 Titus (to himself). I'm curious to know if she also says "red rub'n!". (Aloud) Greetings, God, elective being!

 Salome. Most obedient servant, fair sir!

 Titus (half to himself.) She thinks I am beautiful, that is the first of all.

 Salome. Oh, stop it, I'm the last one here in the place, I'm the goose-keeper, poor Salome.

 Titus. Poor? I pity thee, careful nurse of young geese!

 Salome. You talk so beautifully - who is your father?

 Titus. He is at present a deceased schoolmaster.

 Salome. That's nice! And your wife's mother?

 Titus. Was for some time before her death the wedded wife of her wedded husband.

 Salome. Ah, that is beautiful!

 Titus (to himself). She thinks everything is beautiful, I can talk as stupidly as I want.

 Salome. And may we know your name - at least your baptismal name?

 Titus. My name is Titus.

 Salome. That's a beautiful name!

 Titus. It only fits a man of the head.

 Salome. And you have no living relatives?

 Titus. Oh yes! A cousin, but he does nothing for me.

 Salome. Perhaps he has nothing. Have you perhaps done something to him that he doesn't like you?

 Titus. Very much, I attacked him on the most sensitive side. The eye is the most delicate part of a human being, and I offend his eye as often as he looks at me, because he can't stand red hair.

 Salome. The nasty thing!

 Titus. He concludes from my hairstyle that I have a false, insidious character, and because of this conclusion he closes his heart and his purse to me. Thus, without money, without love, without friendship, my surroundings have become unbearable to me; I have stripped myself of all circumstances, and now I stand there in the shirt sleeves of freedom. If I had a coat of provision to protect me from the storm of food worries -

 Salome. So it is a question of bread? Well, if the master wants to work, then advice can be found. My brother is Yodel here. At the baker's they need a servant. My brother is a journeyman baker.

Titus (pointing to the loaf of bread Salome is carrying). Did he write this bread? I would like to see how far your brother has come in his studies of bread science.

Salome. Well, taste it! But you won't like it. (She cuts a very small piece of bread and gives it to him).

Titus (eating). Hm-it is-

Salome. My geese like it, of course, the cattle have no sense.

Titus (to himself). The sting hurts: it tastes good to me too.

Salome. Well, what do you say? Isn't it true that it's bad?

Titus. Hm! I don't want to condemn your brother so hastily. To judge a work, you have to go deeper. (Takes the loaf of bread and cuts off a very large piece). I will examine and give you my views occasionally. (Puts the piece of bread in his pocket).

Salome. So you'll stay with us for a while? That's right! You have to give up pride when you have nothing! Maybe the baker knows her! (Looking to the left in the background and getting scared.) You, look there!

Titus (looking). The carriage- 's horse is running towards the water- million, all gone! (Runs off to the left in the background.)

Text work

  1. What do we learn:

    1. that Salome and Titus are outsiders because of their red hair.

    2. that Titus has no work and Salome wants to help him.

    3. that Titus has a particularly beautiful pronunciation.

    4. that Titus then prevents a serious accident.

  2. The text can be simplified even further

  3. Presenting it as a pantomime

  4. Retelling in own words

  5. Read the text aloud and act it out, see chapter Text work



  • Have Titus and Salome ever met before?

  • Where does Titus come from/where does Salome come from?

Possible scenario: "Titus and his cousin" (characters: Titus, cousin, clientele): The last argument before Titus leaves his cousin's house. Titus works in sales in his cousin's shop. The customers want goods that Titus does not know. The customers insult Titus and complain to the cousin about Titus. The cousin yells at Titus. What happens?

  • Talisman: What is Salome's life story so far? How old is she? Where does she come from?

Improvisation: She tells her life story to a friend.

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