The 10 Selected Productions

Erniedrigte und Beleidigte (The Insulted and Humiliated)

Based on the novel by Fyodor M. Dostoevsky
Using the Hamburg Poetics Lecture by Wolfram Lotz

Staatsschauspiel Dresden

Premiere 29 March 2018

Sebastian Hartmann’s first production at Staatsschauspiel Dresden interlaces Dostoevsky’s novel with Wolfram Lotz‘ Hamburg poetics lecture and creates a Gesamtkunstwerk (total work of art) with great choreographic and performative energy.

Erniedrigte und Beleidigte. Video trailer

© Staatsschauspiel Dresden

  • 2 h 45 min, without interval
  • In German, no surtitles

Past Dates

Mon, 13 May, 18:15 introduction in English
Tue 14 May, 18:30 introduction in English, public discussion following the performance

In Dostoevsky’s novel, love tangles, their ruthless instrumentalisation and the social decline of entire families blend into each other in rapid succession. Director Sebastian Hartmann, however, is not interested in telling a stringent story, on the contrary: He is looking for the point where reason, plotlines and theatre conventions dissolve, choosing an associative approach to the work – a challenge for the audience, involving improvisation modules, the painting of a gigantic picture and the interconnection with Wolfram Lotz’ Hamburger Poetikvorlesung (lecture of poetics).

Jury Statement

In a looming mist, stirring music resounds and people storm to the edge of the stage. They haul in ladders and begin to create a gigantic picture with black and white paint – higher and higher, layer upon layer. A wheeled hospital bed revolves in front of it and actors in swishing crinolines and black top-hats present ostensibly incoherent and recurring scenes from Dostoevsky’s serialised novel “The Insulted and Humiliated” about an egotistical patriarch, abandoned children and crushing mountains of debt. It takes a while for the audience to find their bearings around the improvisation modules of Sebastian Hartmann’s Dresden production. Almost programmatic in character, the production is interwoven with Wolfram Lotz’ Hamburger Poetikvorlesung (lecture of poetics), outlining principles for a new theatre and performed in a spoken dance by Yassin Trabelsi with a fine sensitivity for sound. Hartmann’s staging is not a linear retelling of the novel’s plot, but rather – and this is already inherent in Dostoevski – aspires to an ecstatic dissolution of sense and logos of the kind that can be experienced in illness, love and, in this case, in art.


Directed by / Stage Design by Sebastian Hartmann
Costume Design Adriana Braga Peretzki
Image/Installation Tilo Baumgärtel
Choir Direction Christine Groß
Lighting Design Lothar Baumgarte
Dramaturgy Jörg Bochow

Luise Aschenbrenner, Eva Hüster, Moritz Kienemann, Torsten Ranft, Lukas Rüppel, Fanny Staffa, Nadja Stübiger, Yassin Trabelsi, Viktor Tremmel