Volksbühne Berlin am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz

Pastor Ephraim Magnus

By Hans Henny Jahnn

The first and maybe most radical play by Hans Henny Jahnn provides a monumental piece of evidence: life must fail –at least in a world contaminated by the Christian spirit. Old pastor Magnus dies right in the beginning. A life not lived has self-destructed. Jahnn’s language artwork describes the destiny of his three children, who literally become “stages of events not suitable for their constitution”, Jahnn’s definition of tragedy. Conventional love experiments become stalled from the very beginning and are experienced by them as boring, half-hearted, inconsistent, leading to destructive proofs of love. The eldest son kills a child murderer. His execution is considered by his surviving siblings as the martyrdom of an innocent convict. They end up grotesquely idolizing his beloved corpse and desperately looking for ways to preserve it. For a consistent materialist like Jahnn, bodily decay is the most intolerable of all facts.


With: Mex Schlüpfer (Ephraim), Silvia Rieger (Johanna), Silvia Rieger (Jakob), Anna Charim (Mathilde), Frank Büttner (Staatsanwalt/ Superintendent), Davide Scarano (Paul), Boris Scarano (Max) and Stefano Scarano (Maxim)

Director: Silvia Rieger
Light Design: Torsten König
Dramaturgy: Ralf Fiedler