Performing Means Action! About Political Processes on Stage Cover Image

Spielen heißt handeln. Über politische Vorgänge auf der Bühne
Performing Means Action! About Political Processes on Stage

Author(s): Karoline Exner
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences, History, Fine Arts / Performing Arts
Published by: Universitatea de Vest din Timişoara
Keywords: Milo Rau; City of Change; Democracy; societal utopia; Elfriede Jelinek; Paula Wessely; acting training.

Summary/Abstract: Inspired by a project by the Swiss theater-maker Milo Rau, we will pose the question of the socio-political relevance of the institution “theatre.” On the one hand, theatre should keep pace with the times. On the other hand, theatres should not deal too much with politics, particularly current politics – especially when financial subsidies are at risk. This balancing act is both unfeasible and undesirable. Since ancient times, theatre has dealt with the actual and immediate reality of its audience. One major development in present day Europe is the refugee crisis. As events of the past months have demonstrated, the handling of this crisis has fallen primarily to civil society. This fact urgently poses questions of democratic values and how mankind can and should live with one another. These have always been the great questions of theatre. History has shown us how dangerous it can be when artists, wanting only to act on stage, shirk from their responsibility to act in life. Such an escape from life onto the stage, however, is impossible. Performing on stage means action! And an intrinsic element of action is the individual’s stance or posture in relationship to it. What does the demand of action beyond the spoken word mean for present-day theatre and its training institutions?

  • Issue Year: 2017
  • Issue No: 6
  • Page Range: 11-24
  • Page Count: 13
  • Language: German