Roland Schimmelpfennig

Aus den Städten in die Wälder, aus den Wäldern in die Städte
3 D, 5 H, 2 Geister
UA: 25.04.1998 · Staatstheater Mainz · Directed by: Hartmut Wickert
“The building blocks of our world are at the centre of Roland Schimmelpfennig’s play. But years ago, Pierre Boulez, the great composer and conductor, was a blockhead when he recommended that all opera houses should be blown up. Of course, Boulez didn’t actually want that to happen – and Schimmelpfennig really doesn’t want it to, not even to the theatres. Otherwise he wouldn’t have written a play such as this. Otherwise he wouldn’t have drawn from the treasures of his education, from all the games of piggy-in-the-middle, from Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream to Woody Allen’s A Midsummer Night’s Sex Comedy through to Der Park by Botho Strauß. “Meet me in the palace wood, a mile without the town; there will we rehearse,” are the words in Midsummer Night’s Dream. What is Schimmelpfennig rehearsing?
He is gleefully describing a theatre director who burns down his theatre. The director releases himself from the obligation of art and goes out into the woods. But what is happening there? A play. Tangled love. He does not find wood, the material from which the world and the theatre is constructed. For this he finds the architect, who is supposed to find the building materials for the theatre. But both they and their love-addled wood partners become trees, wood, potential building material. The theatre can’t die if you don’t want to saw up the people that have turned into building material. The trees, the building material, want to become people and – perform in the theatre. But – see above – the theatre has burned down, the people that want the theatre have become wood, trees, building material. And that won’t do at all. Schimmelpfennig’s play lets theatre die out of love for the theatre. A young author is attacking what he loves. Just like real love. It’s often just blocked up. And an excursion into the woods leads back to the city, in which the theatre, at a pinch, can get by without building materials.” (Gerd Jäger)