„…King of Coal, King of Zinc… Devil of Ruda.”
‘Godula Golem’ is a project of an open-air performance, designed in steampunk climate. It is inspired by legends and mysteries grown around the life of Karol Godula, famous pioneer of Silesian industrialization. The project is being created with the financial support of the Mayor of Tychy. Premiere: 24 August 2014
scenario & direction: Jakub Kabus
It was said that he was an alchemist. That he made pact with the Devil. That he was the Devil himself! Mothers used his name to scare children, and the adults fantasized about his wealth hidden in the mines. Karol Godula condemned the memories of himself to be hidden in the mist of folk tales and myths by destroying most of the documents and pictures that could show his true story to the next generations.
What do we know for sure? A boy from the poor family, fostered by count Ballestrem – the Silesian magnate and industrialist – and given both education and a small fortune. Assaulted and severely mutilated as a youngster, he turned all his energy and visionary genius into creating a network of modern mines and ironworks. Soon enough, he himself was one of the wealthiest industrialists in the Silesia. He was called the King of Zinc, the King of Coal… but also the Devil of Ruda. The deformity of his face, his physical disability, both along with the mark they left on his psychic; the jealousy of the populace he originated from and the scorn of nobility who never forgot his low origins – all that created a wall between Karol Godula and his contemporary people. Fear and awe gave a whole mythology of fantasy, faustic stories about him.
He bequeathed nearly all his wealth to a six-years-old child, an orphan who was a stranger to him. Why? The legend says that when the other children mocked and threw stones at the lame madman, little Joanna felt remorse towards the old man….. and gave him a bouquet of wild flowers.