Münchner Kammerspiele, “Trommeln In Der Nacht”, 2019

Tour Dates: 7th July - 15th July, 2019

Münchner Kammerspiele, 29 September, 1922, was the premiere of "Trommeln in der Nacht".

Tour Dates
  • 7th July - 15th July, 2018

Tour Information:

13th July, 19:30, Beijing Tianqiao Performing Arts Center
14th July, 19:30, Beijing Tianqiao Performing Arts Center

Münchner Kammerspiele, 29 September, 1922, was the premiere of "Trommeln in der Nacht". After years of captivity, a man returns to Berlin to find the city in a state of revolution. His first stop is a visit to his former lover. There, in her parents' living room, he finds out that his beloved has just engaged another man. At the premiere, the protagonist chose to go with his lover and deserts his fellow insurgents. But even while Bertolt Brecht was writing this play, and throughout his life from then on, he struggled with his ending of "Trommeln in der Nacht". In this production, Christopher Rüping poses the question: What would have happened if...? A work from the Münchner Kammerspiele, premiered by Brecht's original theater reproduction. The German playwright Bertolt Brecht successor's interpretation of the original script, with the contemporary reconstruction of neon lights, fog, microphones and futuristic figures.

Press Reviews

“(...) Bertolt Brecht’s “Drums in the Night,” (…) has been given a sweaty, exciting production at the hands of the director Christopher Rüping at the Münchner Kammerspiel, the theater where the play premiered in 1922. (...)
Mr. Rüping’s production shows you can have it both ways, with two slightly altered versions (one listed as “by Brecht”; and the other as “based on Brecht”) that alternate on the theater’s schedule. Both versions, however, end with the plywood set being torn down and noisily fed into a wood chipper, one the director’s many inspired choices in this fast-moving and unpredictable staging. Mr. Rüping has other tricks up his sleeve, which seem contrived to alienate the audience as much as to engage with it. (...) The small cast performs with admirable cohesion and intensity, (…).

- New York Times

“For the first two acts, the stage set of the premiere from 1922 was reconstructed: wind-skewed skyscrapers, as from children's drawings, overshadow the representative bourgeois home. The actors' gestures and phrases also look like cut-outs. This citation aesthetics is congenial (...). When Wiebke Puls disfigures herself as a raven mother in expressionist solo dance, one believes to be in a silhouette film by Lotte Reininger. ”

- FAZ

“Strong applause for a strong staging.”

- Augsburger Allgemeine

“Completely detached from the historical reminiscence and brushed against the grain is the fourth act. Just this surprising refusal of all Brecht conventions gives the scenes a wonderful poetry. ”

- Münchner Merkur

“With the new staging of the play at the Kammerspiele you can rediscover a piece that had disappeared. The wild language, the unmasking of the phrases of the citizen, politics in war and revolution, the "newspapers" (today: media) and the theater as a fairground booth: All this shows the birth of the epic theater out of the spirit of the panopticon. ”

- Die Abendzeitung

Trommeln i Der Nacht

By/After: Bertold Brecht
Director: Christopher Rüping

Münchner Kammerspiele, 29 September, 1922, was the premiere of "Trommeln in der Nacht" (Drums in the Night). After years of captivity, a man returns to Berlin to find the city in a state of revolution. His first stop is a visit to his former lover. There, in her parents' living room, he finds out that his beloved has just engaged another man, a war profiteer, who will one day modernise her father's factory. In disappointment and anger, the man joins the socialist battles taking place on the streets and becomes an important figure in the Spartacist Uprising against the conservative government. The violent occupation of the newspaper district by insurgents is imminent. At that point, his beloved comes to her senses and leaves her new fiancé to woo back her former lover. Faced with the choice between his lover and the uprising, he hesitates briefly before making a decision: he chooses to desert the insurgency and go home with his lover. After "Der Spieler", "Hamlet" and, most recently, "Miranda July's The First Bad Man", Christopher Rüping, the in-house director at the Kammerspiele, stages Brecht's story that is set in a turbulent era. The fact that the premiere took place at the Kammerspiele almost 100 years ago is no more than a footnote.

At the premiere, the protagonist chose to go with his lover and deserts his fellow insurgents. But even while Bertolt Brecht was writing this play, and throughout his life from then on, he struggled with his ending of "Trommeln in der Nacht". Should the war veteran opt for the revolution instead of his own personal happiness? In this production, Christopher Rüping poses the question: What would have happened if...?

Münchner Kammerspiele

The Münchner Kammerspiele are among the most important stages in the German-speaking context. Since its beginnings in the 1920s, the theatre has been shaped by a strong ensemble, which particularly seeks the dialogue and confrontation with the present. Having presented numerous world premieres, including works by Friedrich Dürrenmatt,

Frank Wedekind and Bertolt Brecht, the theatre conceives itself as an aesthetically innovative, contemporary, and cosmopolitan municipal theatre with a socio-political focus. They have been invited to numerous festivals both in Germany as well as abroad.

At the beginning of the season 2015/16, Matthias Lilienthal took over the artistic direction of the Münchner Kammerspiele introducing an experimental arrangement with the strong ensemble, composed of some well-known and some new faces, and the increasing internationalisation of the theatre as central parameters. He invited directors such as Philippe Quesne, Rabih Mroué, and Toshiki Okada, while Christopher Rüping has done a series of productions as in-house-director.

Director: Christopher Rüping

The director Christopher Ruping, born in Hanover in 1985, has been the in-house director at the Munchner Kammerspiele since the 2016/17 season. He became interested in the theatre in its various forms from an early age. Before he studied theatre direction at the Zurich University of the Arts and then at the Theatre Academy in Hamburg, he assisted at the Schauspiel Hannover. His production of "Das Fest", which he directed at the Schauspiel Stuttgart based on the eponymous film by Thomas Vinterberg and Mogens Rukov, was invited to the Berlin Theatertreffen in 2015. In the years 2014 and 2015, Christopher Rüping was twice voted Young Director of the Year in the critics'survey ofthe "Theater heute".Today, Rüping directs at theatres in Berlin, Hamburg, Zurich and Stuttgart. He made his debut at the Münchner Kammerspieleinthe 2015/16 season with an adaption of Dostoevsky's novel "The Player". In 2017/18 season he directed Bertolt Brecht's "Trommeln in der Nacht" at the Kammerspieleinthe.

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