multicultural city Berlin (Germany)
The Pandora’s Box
by Monika Dobrowlanska
Festival Synenergy, Novi Sad/ Serbia, 19th of November 2019, 19:00 (duration 45′)
Director: Monika Dobrowlanska
Set design: Hanna Sibilski
Dramaturgy: Nina Rühmeier
Premiere in Berlin on March 15, 2019 at the Akademie der Künste
Theatre artists from Poland and Germany have come together to explore the phenomenon of national identities and right-wing populism in Europe
Production by multicultural city e.V.
Patronage: Dr. Dietmar Woidke, Minister President of Brandenburg
Supporters: Brandenburgische Landeszentrale für politische Bildung, Staatskanzlei des Landes Brandenburg, Koordinierungsstelle Tolerantes Brandenburg, Stiftung Berliner Sparkasse, Berliner Sparkasse, Friede Springer Stiftung, EWE Stiftung, Charity Pot Lush, the Between Bridges Foundation.
ABOUT THE PLAY
YOU CANNOT SEE, WHAT YOU CANNOT SEE
A DOCUMENTARY GROTESQUE
Theatre artists from Poland and Germany have come together to explore the phenomenon of national identities and rightwing populism in Europe.Who am I and who is that person leaving next to me? Almost everywhere in Europe autocrats and right-wing populists are moving from the margins to the centre of the society.
They instil fears towards foreigners, make discriminatory behaviour publicly respectable, revive old stereotypesand resentments against the European neighbours andstigmatise the concept of common Europe.Always the same, everywhere different – under the patronage of the Prime Minister of Brandenburg, Dr. Dietmar Woidke, theatre artists have teamed up to bringtheir perspectives on everyday right-wing populism inGermany and Poland together into a performance.
Whatkind of stereotypes emerge when a Polish and Germanwoman start to talk to each other on the bridge over theOder river between Słubice and Frankfurt? How nationalist media propaganda and hate spechees affect people? What forms do nationalist attitudes take in differentcountries? Are we living in times in which our identitiesare changing, or simply our consciousness of them?
International Theater Festival from the Center of Europe LOTO!
Theater people from four European countries have created a joint theater project that addresses topics of nationalidentity and right-wing tendencies. The question posedby the three writers, three directors and five actors fromFrance, Germany, Poland and Hungary involved in the project is: “Who am I and who lives next to me?” The play portrays the phenomenon of the political right, the new gapbetween East and West. , as well as the global anti-globalization movement across the European continent.
Throughartistic means ,the project combats the inherited prejudices and resentments that European neighbors are harboring against one another. Always the same, everywhere isdifferent. Among family members and friends, the fear ofthe Other flares up, descriminating behavior is acceptable.
Based on the myth of Pandora’s Box, each of the authorsinvolved in the project tells onestory from their own country.
(Das Diplomatische Magazin)
Alternately playing main andsupporting characters, the actors on stage not only performtheir roles, but also portrayacting characteristics of thecontemporary theater of theircountry.
No less interesting isthe choice of topics concerning the marginalized groupsthat the authors chose, whilethe conclusion that it is a religious element that pervadesthe whole play is surprising. What makes this internationalproject most of all admirable, and what I would point outas the most important thing is the fact that the project isthe result of their joint work, that they worked togetherto formulate joint statements and a common vision. Thatthey were doing what Europe longed for. On what notonly on its unity depends but also its existence. What theright-wingers of all countries persistently want to destroy.Because common projects and common visions a re thebasis for any reflection on Europe and the possibilities forits further development, something that is essential for thewhole continent.
ABOUT THE GROUP
Multicultural city is a theatre group founded in September2012. In February 2018, it was transformed into a registeredassociation. Monika Dobrowlanska and Veronica Sobczakhave been appointed to board members. We are lookingfor an artistic involvement with the living situation of social marginal, disadvantaged and minority groups. We areinspired by the city of Berlin as multicultural metropolis.
We encourage dialogue between different cultures andreligions. And we claim that different religions, skin coloursand world-views belong to Germany. We want to supportmutual understanding, tolerance and respect throughdealing with prejudices and stereotypes. We explore anddevelop experimental stage forms which result from theencounter of different cultures and arts.
The particular focus lies on documentary theatre plays. multicultural cityoffers a platform for cooperation between artists fromEastern and Western Europe as well as from non-Europeanspace. We want to break the political barriers and to integrate artists from politically isolated countries into a jointcreative process. From the very beginning, multiculturalcity has been pursuing non-profitable goals und has beenfunded by public foundations. The premiere of our first playDisplaced Women took place on May 23, 2013 at MaximGorki Theatre. Since then, we managed to establish cooperation with different partners across Europe. Our theatreproductions participated in multiple international festivals.