“der penner ist jetzt schon wieder woanders”
[now the jerk is somewhere else again]
By Juri Sternburg (*1983, Berlin)
A road movie set in the catacombs of the Berlin underground system. Two men of indeterminate age embark on an incredibly dark and – for everyone they encounter – deadly quest. The reason for their journey is their search for their dealer but “now the jerk is somewhere else again”.
The characters they meet are mirrored mercilessly by Andrei and Igor whose view of mankind and the world is the measure of all things and gives them the right to kill. Those who must die are a publisher, a graffiti artist, an old age pensioner, a couple of tourists, who leave three children behind them, a policeman, whose appearance is taken by Andrei and Igor as a harbinger of something greater.
And then suddenly among all these corpses sits God and he’s reading Conan Doyle. He shows the pair the future where a generational war has broken out and Africa “unarmed but resolute” will march on Europe and he tells them the right numbers for the lottery. Just before Friedrichstraße station God is killed by Igor. We hear the announcement: “Travellers to the German Democratic Republic exit on the left hand side. This train terminates here.”
Not only Igor and Andrei are confused, so is the reader. How Juri Sternburg resolves this has yet to be revealed. The dealer has not turned up, God’s corpse has also disappeared and one asks oneself whether they are both one and the same.
Juri Sternburg was born in Berlin in 1983 and has been active in graffiti and street art since 1998. He has completed work experience and internships in the stage design departments of the Maxim Gorki Theater Berlin and the German Theatre in Almaty, Kazakhstan. His first play ‘6 square meters of chrome’ was created in 2007 as a commission from the Berlin Trockenschwimmer Festival. Directed by Christian Vilma, the play received its world premiere in the municipal swimming baths in Oderberger Straße. Since 2007 Juri Sternburg has written regular columns and articles for the culture section of die taz. His debut radio play ‘Bouncer’ (co-author Frauke Schmidt) was first broadcast in March on SWR. With his theatre play ‘the tramp’s already gone’ he was invited to the 2010 Heidelberger Stückemarkt. Juri Sternburg lives in Berlin.
Scenic Arrangement David Bösch
Dramaturgy John von Düffel
Stage and Costume Design Nora Johanna Gromer
Read by Mirco Kreibich, Jörg Pohl and Michael Schweighöfer