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Pornography

Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg / schauspielhannover / Festival Theaterformen 2007
By Simon Stephens
German translation Barbara Christ

Directed by Sebastian Nübling
Music Lars Wittershagen
Stage design Muriel Gerstner
Costume design Marion Münch
Dramaturgy Nicola Bramkamp, Regina Guhl
Lighting design Roland Edrich

Monique Schwitter Mother
Martin Wißner Pupil
Christoph Franken, Daniel Wahl Brothers
Samuel Weiss
Jana Schulz Student
Peter Knaack Professor
Angela Müthel Old Woman

World premiere 15 June 2007, Hannover
Length 2h 15, no interval
– with English surtitles –

Talk with the audience
Moderation Barbara Burckhardt
Sat 10 May 22:15

London 2005, during the days of the underground train terrorist attacks, the city’s nomination for the Olympic Games, and the Live 8 anti-poverty concert – a city in a state of euphoria and a state of mourning. Simon Stephens tells seven stories that transpire to be a countdown to a catastrophe that he then deliberately omits. He creates an atmosphere of worry and insecurity as he shows “home-grown terrorism” in everyday situations. One tells of a young mother who is bullied at work and betrays corporate secrets; another of a schoolboy who spies on a teacher; of two brothers who build up the courage to enter into an incestuous relationship; a father with a bomb in his heavy bag; a professor who gets a former student to dance for him; an old lady who asks total strangers for food. Stephens is interested in the structural preconditions of terrorism. Isolated city people break taboos so as to experience something special, and they then fall prey to the logic of pornography. Sebastian Nübling’s production is characterised by his usual relaxed and playful approach, staged on the sensational set designed by Muriel Gerstner. The actors spend their time piecing together a jigsaw puzzle of a large-scale copy of Pieter Brueghel’s painting “The Tower of Babel” at the back of the stage, periodically coming forward to join in the action as if they were taking part in a relay race. All in all this is a brilliant world première of a highly intelligent play about one of the most important issues of our day.