THE FIRST ACT
One of the city gates of Pekin. Over the gate, planted on iron poles, a row of severed heads with shaven crowns and Turkish tufts.
TIME: Shortly after sunrise. When the curtain rises the gate is closed. From within the roll of drums and military commands.
BRIGELLA.(Behind the scenes.) Halt! Present arms!TRUFFALDINO.(Behind the scenes.) Halt! Slope swords!Open the gate! At ease! Quick march!(The gate is thrown open.... more...