Polish managing director of a puppet theatre. Maria Weryho-Radziwiłłowicz studied natural science in Saint Petersburg and embarked upon her teaching career, while also writing books for children and works on pedagogy. Between 1900 and 1904, she was manager of a marionette theatre in Warsaw Warszawa, one of the first permanent Polish puppet theatres giving regular performances in its own hall with its own programme for children.
During the few years during which the theatre was active, she presented close to thirty plays, most of these commissioned for the theatre. In 1902, she organized the first competition for a puppet play in Poland; eighteen plays were submitted. The prize-winning plays – among which were Warsz i Sawa (Warsz and Sawa) by Anna Młodowska and Leniwy Janek (Lazy John) by Karol Hoffman – were incorporated into the theatre’s repertoire.
Maria Weryho-Radziwiłłowicz trained her own group of puppeteers to perform with marionettes (string puppets), and in the second season also with glove puppets commissioned by her from A. Malinowski. Some puppets came from the Lupi family in Turin, Italy. Besides the plays based on legends and folk tales – Flet zaczarowany (The Enchanted Flute) by Stefan Gębarski and Boruta by Stefan Kiedrzyński – she also produced the repertoire of European marionette theatres, such as The Three Wishes by Count Franz von Pocci. In mid-1904, the theatre closed, probably due to the high cost of its productions.
- Całka, Dorota. “Marii Weryho teatr prywatny” [The Private Theatre of Maria Weryho]. Kwartalnik Teatralny. No 1. Kraków, 2002.
- Czubek, Jolanta. “Teatr marionetek Marii Weryho” [The Maria Weryho Marionette Theatre]. Teatr Lalek. No. 3. Warszawa, 1970.
- Słownik biograficzny teatru polskiego [The Polish Theatre Biographical Dictionary]. Vol. I (1765-1965), Vol. II (1900-1980). Warszawa: PWN, 1973.