“M(OTHER) COURAGE” DIRECTED BY MARTA GÓRNICKA AT STAATSTHEATER BRAUNSCHWEIG
In MOTHER COURAGE, Marta Górnicka provides voice to the generation of conflict in GERMANY and EUROPE. EUROPE of the madness of neo-nationalist language, conflict, prejudice, fear and violence. She establishes an obscene public chorus. It is obscene as it provides voice to those who should be mute: immigrants, mothers, and children.
The CHORUS asks questions about the understandable anxiety and irrational fear, about the Strangers, refugees in Germany and in Europe; about the reality full of violence and absurdity; about the brutal clash of human attitudes.
Snippets of military marches (Wenn die Soldaten), love songs, quotes from “Mother Courage” and “Fatzer” become signs of different directions. Texts from newspapers or from works by Jelinek, Heiner Müller, Habermas, sociological texts, children’s counting-out rhymes, songs by Schubert, quotes from the Bible, national classics and fragments of Nazi marches: the CHORUS uses them to ask what about those who no longer have the strength to bear reality in contemporary Europe? In Germany? What is their reality? What is a phantasm, and what is real? Where is the “truth” today? There is no history beyond war – says Brecht. Towards whom is war waged today?
To me, MOTHER is a whole constellation of different options which I activate on stage: a woman, a man, a voice from the computer, Germany, Europe, Merkel. And, finally, theMother or M(other). Today, her children are dogs, Jews, Arabs, immigrants, homosexuals, mute Catherines. All those who are excluded. All those who are trying to be Courage. And those who no longer have the strength to bear reality. Those who do not pay off. For no one. But they cry “MOTHER!”. Yet, these are also “wicked” children, nationalists, violent hooligans. Is it possible to find room in Mother’s cart for these millions of children today?
A MOTHER is weeping over her child – the nation – who is making mistakes again, it is never perfect. But, again, she gives birth to another son, another daughter, whom she sends to the war… For me, MUTTER is a vehicle through which I try to talk about the brutality of today’s world, about how inhuman a human can be, how history comes full circle.
And, finally, GERMANY as a mother. A NATION in the middle of EUROPE. A big body lying in the middle of Europe. A replicating body – a NATION. A mother who declares: “I am ready to accept everyone, but also to spit them out”.
German translation by Andreas Volk
concept, libretto, direction: Marta Górnicka
dramaturgy: Katrin Breschke
score: Wojtek Blecharz
choreography: Anna Godowska
set design concept: Robert Rumas
décor and costumes: Katharina Lackman
performers: Sandra Bezler, Pauline Kästner, Aleksandra Kuntze, Magdalena Lohmann, Brigitte Middlemiss, Klara-Felicitas Räthel, Anna Roskinski, Julia Schäfle, Mattias Schamberger, Undine Schönfeld, Waltraut Siemann, Martina Struppek, Maik Teßmann, Christophe Vetter, Andreas Vögler, Julia Weidner, Ingeborg Wender, Rika Weniger, Ulla Winter, Nadine Wolfarth
producer: Staatstheaters Braunschweig