Dantons Tod (Danton’s Death)
Theater des Lachens, Frankfurt/Oder
Piece after Georg Büchner
Friday 13 Nov. // 07:30 – 09:00 p.m.
Saturday 14 Nov. // 05:00 – 06:30 p.m.
»The knight, death and the devil are tattle-tale Partners in Büchner’s piece. They are very brazen, funny and smutty and seem to be escapees from a mediaeval mystery play or a puppet show. They argue which scenes of Büchner’s piece should be played and which should be cut. They play Danton, Robespierre and Camille with malicious and tender wit… Theatre like this, sophisticated and experimental at the same time, has indeed become very rare« (Klaus Pfützner, Neues Deutschland, Berlin, 01.12.1997).
In just three years, Karl Georg Büchner (1813-37) created a slim life’s product which is, along with the »Woyzeck« and »Leonce and Lena« dramas as well as the »Lenz« tale, far more important than many others. »Dantons Tod« (»Danton’s Death«) puts the tragically failing revolutionary at the centre: Danton meekly abstains from changes through violence and then dies as a victim of the revolution of which he himself was a driving force.
Astrid Griesbach directed the gloomy play about the revolution as a very humorous tomfoolery and reduced the originally planned roles of about 30 actors to the present (very thrilling!) three. Revolutionary ideals got lost, now everyone tries to find a comfortable niche in the new society. Büchner’s text was emphasised by a sharp pen that highlights the bitter background. The laughter entertains and scares simultaneously, comparisons with present smirks of political reality emerge.
In its present form the Theater des Lachens (until 1996 »Kleines Theater«) exists since 1992 and belongs among the best professionally independent theatre in Germany’s new federal provinces. The synthesis of acting and puppetry is an important element of its work. »Kohlhaas« (after Kleist, 1993), »The Cherry Tree Garden« (»Der Kirschgarten«, after Tschechov, 1994) and »Peer Gynt« (after Ibsen, 1995) were especially successful productions. The theatre played numerous guest performances in Germany and abroad.
(followed by audience discussion on both days)
Im Anschluss an beide Vorstellungen findet ein Publikumsgespräch statt.
Moderation: Michael Freundt, Berlin – Leipzig
Premiere: 08.11.1997, Frankfurt/Oder
Produktion: Theater des Lachens, Frankfurt/Oder / Theater unterm Dach, Berlin
Text: Georg Büchner
Stückfassung und Inszenierung: Astrid Griesbach
Bühnenbild und Kostüme: Marianne Hollenstein
Musik: Hermann Naehring
Choreografie: Dominique Efstratiou
Lichtdesign: André Nowka
Darsteller: Ralf Bockholdt, Thomas Jahn, Frank Panhans
8th Festival Year