Well done! Hakan Savaş Mican, a director with Turkish roots, stages an evening of theatre about migration, alienation – without kitsch and sweet exoticism. (…) Sasha Marianna Salzmann's novel becomes a topical piece of theatre here.
Peter Helling, Norddeutscher Rundfunk / NDR.de, 28 October 2022
This is a big-city generational comedy against the backdrop of great history. Politically biased, but not didactic.
Alexander Diehl, taz.de, 29 November 2022
The director is slowly becoming a specialist in theatrical family constellations. (…) Unobtrusive, concentrated theatre very close to real life.
Falk Schreiber, nachtkritik.de, 28 October 2022
Who is „homo sovieticus“ – a Soviet-type person? What distinguishes him, what has shaped him and how does he function in today's world?
Edi is a young Berlin-based journalist from a Ukrainian-Russian-Jewish family who moved to the eastern part of Germany – the former GDR – after the fall of the Iron Curtain. She knows almost nothing about her parents' youth in the Soviet Union. Is that why they sometimes seem like they are from another planet? And how to talk to them about the life they left behind in Ukraine, with which they have nostalgic but also painful memories? After all, just like her parents, Edi herself does not like to talk about her private life for some reason… But this will have to change: her mother Lena is planning a celebration of her jubilee and is inviting her extended family. Edi will have to face her close relatives… Is this an opportunity to finally learn more about her origins?
The text Glorious People / Im Menschen muss alles herrlich sein is one of the most important German novels of 2021. Sasha Marianna Salzmann, a non-binary author of Jewish-Russian origin, won the Hermann Hesse Literary Prize for it. In a multi-generational story, they offer a glimpse into the fate of the people of Ukraine from Soviet times to the outbreak of war in the east of the country. With a sensitive, musical adaptation of the text directed by Hakan Savaş Mican, the renowned ensemble Thalia Theater Hamburg will thus be performing for the first time at the Flora Theatre Festival, which will also bring the 26th edition of the festival to a festive close with a gripping family story about the search for one's own identity in post-Soviet times.
directed by Hakan Savaş Mican
based on and adapted by Sasha Marianna Salzmann
stage design Michael Köpke
costumes Sylvia Rieger
dramaturgy Susanne Meister
music Masha Kashyna
video Sebastian Lempe
live music Masha Kashyna a Stefan Stern
Pauline Rénevier, Toini Ruhnke, Stefan Stern, Oda Thormeyer, Oana Solomon
premiere 27 October 2022
Director and playwright Hakan Savaş Mican (1978) was born in Germany but grew up in Turkey. He returned to his native town of Berlin in 1997, where he completed his architectural studies in 2004. He then studied directing at the German Film and Television Academy in Berlin (DFFB). During his studies, he made feature films and documentaries for ARTE and RBB.
Since 2013 Mican has been working as a in-house director at Maxim Gorki Theater. He made his debut there with the production Schwimmen Lernen. Ein Lovesong (Learning to swim – a love song), which was invited to the Radikal jung theatre festival and the Heidelberg Stückemarkt festival of new plays in 2014. Just like with Glorious People Sasha Marianna Salzmann was responsible for the original text of the play.
Sasha Marianna Salzmann (1985), a non-binary star of German literature, raises the topic of gender identity in their novels and plays. Like Mican, they carry the experience of emigration: from Volgograd the family moved to Moscow and finally to Germany in 1995. The themes of immigration, uprooting and the difficult restart are also interwoven in the autobiographical novel Im Menschen muss alles herrlich sein, which (like her first novel Außer sich, 2017) was shortlisted for the German Book Prize.
In 2012, the play Muttermale Fenster blau (Birthmarks Windows Blue) received the Kleist Prize for Young Dramatist, and Mother Tongue Mameloschn won the Nestroy Drama Prize for Best Fringe Production.
Salzmann’s studies in literature, theatre and media at the University of Hildesheim complemented their studies in stage design at the Berlin University of the Arts. Since 2013 they have been working at the Maxim Gorki Theater as an in-house writer.
Thalia Theater Hamburg is one of the most famous and respected theatres in Germany. The stage, named after Thalia, the muse of the comedy genre, was founded in 1843. Its second building – the Thalia in Gaußstraße – is a venue for experimental work and young emerging artists.
The famous stage is associated with major directorial figures of the second half of the 20th century, such as Peter Zadek, Ruth Berghaus, Hans Neuenfels and Jürgen Flimm, who was as artistic director (1985–2000) instrumental in the theatre's rise. For example, the musicals The Black Rider and Alice, which emerged from Robert Wilson's collaboration with Tom Waits in the early 1990s, were internationally acclaimed.
Under the direction of the theatre's intendant Ulrich Khuon, Thalia was twice voted Theatre of the Year in the Theater heute poll in 2003 and 2007. Currently popular creators such as Michael Thalheimer, Andreas Kriegenburg, Stephan Kimmig and Armin Petras were involved in shaping the theatre's poetics.
Since the 2009/10 season, Joachim Lux has been the artistic director. The theatre's poetics is co-created by renowned artists such as Antú Romero Nunes, Christopher Rüping, Leander Haußmann, Yael Ronen, Stefan Pucher, Jette Steckel and Kirill Serebrennikov, a director from the Russian dissident movement. The repertoire consists of modern interpretations of classic plays alongside adaptations of contemporary material. Thalia Theater organizes the annual Lessingtage Festival, which focuses on contemporary European political theatre.
Sasha Marianna Salzmann – portrait – German Book Prize
Sasha Marianna Salzmann – author reading and discussion
-about the novel https://www.youtube.com/watch…
-Sasha Marianna Salzmann: Darkroom des Erzählens – YouTube
documentary film about Thalia Theater Hamburg – Alice musical with Tom Waits directed by Robert Wilson (1992)
photo Krafft Angerer