EXIT GHOST? 25 YEARS AFTER THE FALL OF THE BERLIN WALL
A Critical Commemoration of German Unification - Nov 6-7 - NYC
For photos from this event, go to our Flickr page.
One generation after the end of the Cold War and German unification, the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9th, 1989, remains an epoch-changing moment. How have the intervening years since 1989 impacted the lives of former East and West Germans and today’s German political landscape? While public debates often suggest that young Germans have little interest for the legacy of the GDR and are looking exclusively at the future, we would like to discuss the politics of history, identity, and collective memory. To this end, we organize, together with the New School for Public Engagement, a two-part event consisting of the U.S. premiere of the play “1989 [Exit Ghost]” performed by the Dresden-based troupe theatrale subversion, and a public conference with Richard D. Wolff (University of Massachusetts Amherst), John Daniszewski (Associated Press), Jonathan Bach (The New School), Romy Weyrauch, Director of theatrale subversion), Albert Scharenberg (RLS–NYC), and many others.
1989 [EXIT GHOST]
Thursday, November 6, 7pm
Segal Theatre, the Graduate Center, City University of New York
Free with RSVP here.
1989 [exit ghost] is a play with and about the so called 3rd Generation East—people in their mid-twenties to mid-thirties who were born in the German Democratic Republic (GDR). Under the direction of Romy Weyrauch, actors representing the 3rd Generation East together with actors of the same generation born in West Germany perform this play to seek answers on philosophical and political questions in conjunction with the downfall of a socialist state and our current times of increased worsening global financial crisis. The play is a broad discourse of a generation that continuously challenges the historical reception of the downfall of the GDR as well as the political options during the times of change in 1989, and today.
The plot of 1989 [exit ghost] is based on Heiner Müllers’ rehearsals of Hamlet / Hamletmachine in 1989/90, and the rapidly changing political events outside the Deutsche Theater in Berlin. Snippets of the script, rehearsal notes of Heiner Müller and his assistant and dramaturge Stephan Suschke and documentary sources are incorporated in the production of 1989 [exit ghost]. Under the joint authorship of theatrale subversion including own writings from the performers of 1989 [exit ghost] a new essayistic theatre piece evolved.
Performers and writers: Bärbel Aschenberg, Katharina Bill, Norman Grotegut, Sascha Hermeth, Lorenz Pilz, Thimo Teiche
Direction: Romy Weyrauch
Dramaturgy: Martin Zepter
Stage setting, costumes and theory: Henrike Terheyden
Live music: Thimo Teiche
Sound: Stephanie Krah
Production management: Daniela Guse
See the short film about the guest performance of 1989 [exit ghost] here.
A CRITICAL COMMEMORATION OF GERMAN UNIFICATION
November 7, noon – 6pm
The New School, Orozco Room, 66 W.12th Street, 7th floor.
The conference is followed by a reception.
Free with RSVP here.
12:30-1:45pm: Before the Wall Fell: A Reminiscence from the Cold War Trenches
This conversation focuses on the accounts of two professors who once served on different sides of the border in divided Germany.
Jürgen von Mahs, Assistant Professor for Urban Studies at the Eugene Lang College – The New School for Liberal Arts
Trebor Scholz, Associate Professor of Culture and Media, Eugene Lang College – The New School for Liberal Arts
2:00-3:45pm: Enter Ghost? Generations, Art, and Memory in Germany Today
This panel explores what the legacy of the division means for those who grew up or were born after 1989. How are these generations interpreting and working creatively with the layers of history that make up Europe’s culture and cult of memory?
Romy Weyrauch, Director of the theatrale subversion, Dresden
Nora Krug, Associate Professor of Illustration, Art, Media and Technology at The New School
Moderator: Jonathan Kalb, Chair of the theater department at Hunter College.
4:00-5:45pm: What’s Left? Living Legacies
After 40 years of lived experience of socialism in East Germany, and the development of a new left in 1968 in Germany, the left spectrum of the political landscape in unified Germany had to be redefined. What does it mean to be “left” in unified Germany?
Albert Scharenberg, Co-director of the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—New York Office
Richard Wolff, Professor of Economics Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Melanie Lorek, Co-founder of the U.S. network Third Generation East
John Daniszewski, Journalist and Senior Managing Editor for the Associated Press
5:45-6:00pm: Closing remarks
Talking About Democratic Socialism 30 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall.
Fall 1989 was a moment of radical transformation for the former German Democratic Republic (GDR). Already many GDR citizens had migrated to West Germany to escape state repression. On November 4, almost half a million other GDR citizens gathered at Alexanderplatz in Berlin for a peaceful protest, calling for the democratization of the socialistic state. Organized by......
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