Volksbühne Berlin am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz

Glaube Liebe Hoffnung

Faith, Hope and Charity – by Ödön von Horváth and Lukas Kristl

Ödon von Horváth wrote a play against the "bureaucratic-irresponsible application of petty legal provisions". A young woman is destroyed – just one of the many who slip through the social safety net in times of economic crisis. Because she has no other means of support and no residence permit, she wants to pawn her body to an anatomical institute to be used for dissection after her death. An employee of the institute finds her a job selling lingerie door to door, which proves short-lived since she lacks some other official permit. She is unjustly reported to the police for illegal prostitution and loses her court case. Then life seems to hold out a bit of hope: a young policeman falls in love with her. But their love lasts only for one night. The woman drowns herself. Before she dies, she once more encounters the individuals who have assisted in and hastened her destruction.

Horváth called the play "a little dance of death" since the young woman’s every attempt at saving herself becomes a new piece of evidence against her. He wrote his drama during the economic crisis of the 1930s, which was different from the current one but triggered similar experiences and life lines. Horváth denied having "prettified" or "uglified" anything in his story; however, he felt it necessary to note that the expressions of human emotion are "sentimentalised, by which I mean falsified, trivialised, masochistically hankering after pity".

Duration: 3h 35min, one break


With: Olivia Grigolli (Elisabeth), Sasha Rau (Elisabeth), Ueli Jäggi (Alfons Klostermeyer, ein Schupo), Jean-Pierre Cornu (Präparator), Ulrich Voß (Der Baron mit dem Trauerflor), Bettina Stucky (Irene Prantl), Irm Hermann (Frau Amtsgerichtsrat), Josef Ostendorf (Der Herr Amtsgerichtsrat / Oberpräparator / Der Oberinspektor), Thomas Wodianka (Mann auf der Leiter / Joachim, der tollkühne Lebensretter / Ein Invalider / Tierkoordinator / Ein zweiter Schupo), Clemens Sienknecht (Pianist / Vorstand), Sophia Maria Keßen, Hannah von Billerbeck and Esther Preußler

Director: Christoph Marthaler
Stage Designer: Anna Viebrock
Costumes: Sarah Schittek
Light Design: Phoenix (Andreas Hofer), Johannes Zotz
Music: Clemens Sienknecht, Christoph Marthaler, Martin Schütz
Video: Klaus Dobbrick
Art Direction: Gerhard Alt
Dramaturgy: Malte Ubenauf, Stefanie Carp

PRODUCTION Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz COPRODUCTION Wiener Festwochen, Schauspielhaus Zürich, Théâtre de l’Odéon Paris, Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg