Production
The 10 Selected Productions

humanistää!

eine abschaffung der sparten

Based on Ernst Jandl

Volkstheater (Vienna)

Premiere 15 January 2022

Language, rhythm and music convene in Claudia Bauer’s production. The director and her cast give several Jandl-texts a theatrical form and awaken an enjoyment of sound itself.

humanistää!. Video trailer

© Volkstheater Vienna

  • 2 h, no interval
  • In German with English surtitles; Fri, 13.5. with German audio description

Past Dates

Public discussion
Friday, 13 May 2022 after the performance

Broadcast of the 3sat television recording on TV
Saturday, 21 Mai, 20:15

In “die humanisten”, two Nobel Prize winners meet and are convinced that they have scaled the summits of intellectual life. “Aus der Fremde”, on the other hand, focuses on the realities of life as an author. Claudia Bauer’s musical theatre production is full of powerful imagery and brings the highly musical, strictly structured and yet explosive texts by Austrian language artist Ernst Jandl to the stage with an outstanding ensemble. They are supported by Peer Baierlein’s score, which was composed specifically for this production.

Statement of the jury

In “humanistää!”, the full-length play “Aus der Fremde” constitutes the narrative framework for a beautiful overabundance of texts by Ernst Jandl. With her eclectic approach, Claudia Bauer endeavours to revive Jandl’s idiom for the stage, both diverse and eminently suitable for the theatre. Using repetitions and shifting meanings, the poet Ernst Jandl laboured to make sense of reality. It is therefore only logical that the staging at Volkstheater relies on repetitions and the resulting breaches of perception. In “Aus der Fremde”, an auto-fictional text about a poet couple, the characters consistently talk in the third person and use only the conjunctive mood. With its masks, wigs and offstage dialogues, Jandl’s text transforms into a strangely impersonal and yet apposite portrayal. As a play within the play, the Volkstheater-production adds the one-act play “die humanisten”: miserable, wailing men, condemned to brute comedy. That Bauer is just as able to strike more quiet notes becomes evident in “deutsches gedicht”. The director intersperses larger text elements with Jandl-passages, staged miniatures that aim to entertain. “humanistää!” – a celebration of Jandl.

 To juror Petra Paternoʼs video statement in the Berliner Festspiele Media Library (in German)

Artistic Team

Claudia Bauer Direction
Patricia Talacko Stage design
Andreas Auerbach Costume design
Peer Baierlein Composition & musical direction
Paul Grilj Lighting design
Sebastian Hartl, Giorgio Mazzi Sound design
Matthias Seier Dramaturgy

With
Elias Eilinghoff, Evi Kehrstephan, Bettina Lieder, Hasti Molavian, Nick Romeo Reimann, Julia Franz Richter, Uwe Rohbeck, Samouil Stoyanov

Igor Gross Live music (percussion, vibraphone)
Lukas Lauermann Live music (cello, FX)
Jera H. Petriček Conductor
Thomas Barcal Live camera
Jürgen M. Weisert Prompter

Performance rights: Random House/Rowohlt Theater Verlag

Programme brochure

to download (, 28.8 MB)