70 Years of Berliner Festspiele

Eine Kirche der Angst vor dem Fremden in mir

Fluxus oratorio by Christoph Schlingensief
Invited to the Theatertreffen 2009
Recorded at the Ruhrtriennale 21.8.2008

In his Fluxus oratorio Christoph Schlingensief resolutely extended his staging of the self and made his cancer diagnosis the occasion and theme of his theatrical action. The requiem is also an homage to the Fluxus artists who regarded lives and deaths as a work of art.

A theatre stage with black and white images projected onto its screen. The projections overshadow the group of children and teenagers who stand in the center of the stage.

Christoph Schlingensief, “A Church Of Fear Of The Stranger In Me”, 2008. Film, colour, sound. Film still

© david baltzer / bildbü

  • 95 min
  • In German without subtitles

“We commemorate the future deceased, who desired to achieve much, no sooner than he had departed again. A person like us, like you, like me, like everyone – and in that also special. He was who he was, no more, but still, who can say that about themselves? Many are dead, many are undead, we at least have not yet been buried. Halleluja!” In his Fluxus oratorio “A Church of Fear of the Stranger in Me” for the first time Christoph Schlingensief addresses the cancer with which he had been diagnosed that year. Fear is the rock on which Schlingensief builds his church. Within it, the former altar boy not only explores his relationship with God, but most of all his relationship with himself. Thus begins a journey inside himself. Transcendence and transparency are on collision course: the church space is copied from that of his home congreation Herz Jesu in Oberhausen. He creates images, confessions and liturgies that detect the intruder and approach the fear of death. Those taking part include Margit Carstensen, Angela Winkler, Komi Mizrajim Togobonou, Karin Witt and, in the cast of the Ruhrtriennale Version from 2008, also Christoph Schlingensief.


Director Christoph Schlingensief
Stage Design Thomas Goerge, Thekla von Mülheim
Costume Design Aino Labarenz
Dramaturgy Carl Hegemann

With Margit Carstensen, Angela Winkler, Mira Partecke, Komi Mizrajim Togbonou, Stefan Kolosko, Karin Witt, Horst Gelloneck, Kerstin Grassmann, Norbert Müller, Achim von Paczensky, Klaus Beyer and Christoph Schlingensief

© Filmgalerie 451 | Schlingensief Nachlass