Napoleon vs. the Turk, When the Master Warrior Met the Master Machine

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9781937056964: Napoleon vs. the Turk, When the Master Warrior Met the Master Machine

Napoleon Vs. the Turk is an exciting minute-by-minute drama loosely based on the real Turk and its match against Napoleon. It was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies.
1809. Napoleon Bonaparte has invaded Austria and is working out a treaty at Schönbruun Palace. Also visiting Schönbruun is The Turk, a mechanical man seemingly able to play chess and defeat many seasoned players.

Napoleon, a chess enthusiast, challenges the Turk to a game. But as Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, the last steward of the famous Turk, drunkenly recalls, all is not what it seems.

Before the match, Maelzel feuds with his love, Lotte, who wants to stop the match and for Maelzel to give up the Turk. Meanwhile, the brilliant chess player Allgaier matches wits with defeated Austrian general Sterzl, in a conflict that could spell disaster for Napoleon and Maelzel.

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From the Author:

Dedication

"To history-loving, chess-playing nerds everywhere.

And short people."

--Tom Robertson


Preface

I first heard about the Turk in a short article by Tom Standage in the December 1999 issue of The Economist. The article also described its famous match with Napoleon. As a chess and technology enthusiast, I was immediately enthralled with the idea. The world had just seen IBM's "Deep Blue" computer defeat chess grandmaster Gary Kasparov in a much publicized match. The match was occasion for numerous people to speculate on the advances of artificial intelligence and ask the question as to whether a machine could actually think. It was great irony, then, that these questions had been asked in the same context, over a hundred years prior, only based on a machine that was in fact an elaborate hoax!

I knew as soon as I read the article that I had to write a play about it. The themes and conflict practically wrote themselves. After I finished my degree at university two years later, I set out to write the play. When I went to research the Turk, I found that Standage, the author of the article that inspired me, had just written a book about the Turk. This play owes a great deal to the research done for that book. It was there I learned about Maelzel, the tragic figure who owned and showcased the Turk during the match with Napoleon, and Allgaier, the French chess grandmaster who was suspected of being the operator inside.

I should say that although the play is based on a true historical fact, and there really was a Maelzel and a Turk, it also takes great liberties with the truth in order to present a compelling narrative. The character of Lotte, Maelzel's love interest, is a fabrication; as is Sterzl, the disgruntled and defeated Austrian general.

The play was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies. It received positive reviews and a great turnout. I'm thrilled to see a print edition of the play and would be even more thrilled if this spurred others to want to perform it. A reminder that the play can be performed without paying any royalties, as long as it's performed by a registered not-for-profit organization or by students, and permission is asked for prior to the performance.

     --Tom Robertson, Toronto, Canada, March 2012

From the Inside Flap:

Napoleon Vs. The Turk was originally performed in Toronto as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival in July, 2006.

Original Cast and Crew

Arlin Dixon.................................................The Turk
Esther Barlow..................................................Lotte           
Kris Bruun....................................................Maelzel                                                 
Jamie Duncan............................................Napoleon 
Scott Gorman.................................................Sterzl              
Qasim Kahn..................................................Allgiaer       
David Shokking.....................................Beauharnais  
Josh Young...............................Porter, Mover, Clown
Director................................................Luke Davies   
Kat Chin............................................Stage Manager                 
Johanna Edwards.......................................Costumes  

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Book Description Dionysus Books, United States, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Napoleon Vs. the Turk is an exciting minute-by-minute drama loosely based on the real Turk and its match against Napoleon. It was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies. 1809. Napoleon Bonaparte has invaded Austria and is working out a treaty at Schonbruun Palace. Also visiting Schonbruun is The Turk, a mechanical man seemingly able to play chess and defeat many seasoned players. Napoleon, a chess enthusiast, challenges the Turk to a game. But as Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, the last steward of the famous Turk, drunkenly recalls, all is not what it seems. Before the match, Maelzel feuds with his love, Lotte, who wants to stop the match and for Maelzel to give up the Turk. Meanwhile, the brilliant chess player Allgaier matches wits with defeated Austrian general Sterzl, in a conflict that could spell disaster for Napoleon and Maelzel. Author Bio Tom Robertson has written and produced plays in Toronto, Canada, since graduating from Queen s University in 2002 where he studied Drama and History. His past work includes collaborating on Ninja Heaven, an action play , at the National Film Board Cinematheque stage in 2005, Napoleon Vs. The Turk, which was performed at the Toronto Fringe Festival in 2006, and writing for the production Sit On It, a monthly live sit-com . He is the winner of the J.C.W. Saxton Prize for Playwriting from Queen s University for his play, Horses, and won first prize in the 2004 Toronto Fringe Festival 24-hour Playwriting Contest with his play, Let s Start Over. Tom makes his living as Senior Project Manager for Shaw Communications. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9781937056964

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Book Description Dionysus Books, United States, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Napoleon Vs. the Turk is an exciting minute-by-minute drama loosely based on the real Turk and its match against Napoleon. It was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies. 1809. Napoleon Bonaparte has invaded Austria and is working out a treaty at Schonbruun Palace. Also visiting Schonbruun is The Turk, a mechanical man seemingly able to play chess and defeat many seasoned players. Napoleon, a chess enthusiast, challenges the Turk to a game. But as Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, the last steward of the famous Turk, drunkenly recalls, all is not what it seems. Before the match, Maelzel feuds with his love, Lotte, who wants to stop the match and for Maelzel to give up the Turk. Meanwhile, the brilliant chess player Allgaier matches wits with defeated Austrian general Sterzl, in a conflict that could spell disaster for Napoleon and Maelzel. Author Bio Tom Robertson has written and produced plays in Toronto, Canada, since graduating from Queen s University in 2002 where he studied Drama and History. His past work includes collaborating on Ninja Heaven, an action play , at the National Film Board Cinematheque stage in 2005, Napoleon Vs. The Turk, which was performed at the Toronto Fringe Festival in 2006, and writing for the production Sit On It, a monthly live sit-com . He is the winner of the J.C.W. Saxton Prize for Playwriting from Queen s University for his play, Horses, and won first prize in the 2004 Toronto Fringe Festival 24-hour Playwriting Contest with his play, Let s Start Over. Tom makes his living as Senior Project Manager for Shaw Communications. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9781937056964

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Book Description Dionysus Books, United States, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Napoleon Vs. the Turk is an exciting minute-by-minute drama loosely based on the real Turk and its match against Napoleon. It was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies. 1809. Napoleon Bonaparte has invaded Austria and is working out a treaty at Schonbruun Palace. Also visiting Schonbruun is The Turk, a mechanical man seemingly able to play chess and defeat many seasoned players. Napoleon, a chess enthusiast, challenges the Turk to a game. But as Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, the last steward of the famous Turk, drunkenly recalls, all is not what it seems. Before the match, Maelzel feuds with his love, Lotte, who wants to stop the match and for Maelzel to give up the Turk. Meanwhile, the brilliant chess player Allgaier matches wits with defeated Austrian general Sterzl, in a conflict that could spell disaster for Napoleon and Maelzel. Author Bio Tom Robertson has written and produced plays in Toronto, Canada, since graduating from Queen s University in 2002 where he studied Drama and History. His past work includes collaborating on Ninja Heaven, an action play , at the National Film Board Cinematheque stage in 2005, Napoleon Vs. The Turk, which was performed at the Toronto Fringe Festival in 2006, and writing for the production Sit On It, a monthly live sit-com . He is the winner of the J.C.W. Saxton Prize for Playwriting from Queen s University for his play, Horses, and won first prize in the 2004 Toronto Fringe Festival 24-hour Playwriting Contest with his play, Let s Start Over. Tom makes his living as Senior Project Manager for Shaw Communications. Bookseller Inventory # LIE9781937056964

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Book Description Dionysus Books. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 102 pages. Dimensions: 7.8in. x 5.0in. x 0.5in.Napoleon Vs. the Turk is an exciting minute-by-minute drama loosely based on the real Turk and its match against Napoleon. It was first performed at the 2006 Toronto Fringe Festival, directed by Luke Davies. 1809. Napoleon Bonaparte has invaded Austria and is working out a treaty at Schnbruun Palace. Also visiting Schnbruun is The Turk, a mechanical man seemingly able to play chess and defeat many seasoned players. Napoleon, a chess enthusiast, challenges the Turk to a game. But as Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, the last steward of the famous Turk, drunkenly recalls, all is not what it seems. Before the match, Maelzel feuds with his love, Lotte, who wants to stop the match and for Maelzel to give up the Turk. Meanwhile, the brilliant chess player Allgaier matches wits with defeated Austrian general Sterzl, in a conflict that could spell disaster for Napoleon and Maelzel. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9781937056964

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