Trailer for “Stolpersteine Staatstheater” © Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe
Stolpersteine Staatstheater. [Video trailer]

Stolpersteine Staatstheater (Tripping Stones State Theatre)

Documentary theatre by Hans-Werner Kroesinger
Text version Regine Dura

Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe

Directed by Hans-Werner Kroesinger
Stage and costume design, video Rob Moonen
Music Daniel Dorsch
Artistic collaboration Regine Dura
Dramaturgy Annalena Schott
Theatre education Verena Lany

Veronika Bachfischer
Antonia Mohr
Jonathan Bruckmeier
Gunnar Schmidt

Using staff records of Staatstheater Karlsruhe, director Hans-Werner Kroesinger and dramaturg Regine Dura reconstructed the process of anti-Semitic discrimination and the dismissal of left-wing and liberal theatre artists after 1933. Actors and audience sit together at a large work desk. The actors read from files, newspaper reports, memoirs and interviews with contemporary witnesses. Repeatedly, they transition into brief passages of acting. We hear how in Karlsruhe, Jewish actors, a Jewish prompter and the artistic director were dismissed, arrested, driven into exile and to suicide. Individual artists are not reduced to mere victims, but presented in terse, concentrated portraits. The bureaucratic procedure which provided a detailed set of legal regulations for social exclusion and the preparation of a genocide, the legitimation by procedures that liked to conceal this discrimination in inciting articles in the local NS-paper by citing the pertinent legal clause, the polite, formally always correct letters in which a chief councillor informed the Jewish prompter that her dismissal was lawful – all these make the production into a lesson about the impartial operation of a state bureaucracy.

With English surtitles

Duration 1h 50, no interval

World premiere Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe: 21 June 2015

Public discussion on 18 May, following the second performance