The plaintives

adapted from Maxim Gorky

Premiere 02/12/2016

Deutsches Schauspielhaus

A society somewhere in Europe experiences a state of standstill and alarming rush. The members of the middle class, at risk of social descent, are subliminally afraid. As residents in an interregnum, they defend a way of life that is no longer tenable. Some want to get comfortable in the status quo, others want to change – at least in their minds – but will never be able to get anywhere. Despite the awareness that there is in fact nothing to defend, this precarious state of defence is sometimes expressed in much culturally (over)determined talk, as well as enacted in various artistic events, lectures, and discussions, in career strategies, relentless rivalries, and private disputes. Catastrophes only exist outside of the comfort-resort. They are suppressed by the interregnum inhabitants in the same way that the changes that have already, unstoppably, started to leak into the resort have been ignored by whatever means it takes. Their absurd and embarrassing defensive measures will ultimately lead to disaster, which afterwards no one will have wanted.