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2021 Schauspielhaus Bochum

Viel gut Essen

Quick Info

Nerves are on edge: gay marriage, migration, organic vegetables, feminism – all hot topics that don’t just cause ructions in pubs and on the internet. The politically correct offer warnings from one side while from the other comes a contradictory: “I’m only saying what everybody thinks.” Amid this ongoing conflict and state of constant outrage, one man steps forward – or rather: takes his place by the stove – and gives his thoughts and feelings free rein while preparing a several course menu (another sign of the times) for his wife and son. White, heterosexual, middle class and in good health, his career hasn’t quite matched his expectations, he hasn’t entirely been able to start the family he had hoped for and now the neighbourhood is being gentrified and will probably soon be unaffordable. An alarmingly normal “loser” who was promised he would be a winner from the day he was born.

In Viel gut essen author Sibylle Berg lets a modern everyman curse, moan and argue about the state of our society. Through him the “voice of the people” speaks so openly and honestly that … things become increasingly uncomfortable. Before our very eyes the “feelgood” meal he has planned turns into an explosive cocktail of self-pity and anger. Something is rotten in the state of Germany.

Sibylle Berg, a multi award-winning author and one of the leading dramatists and novelists writing in German today (A Few People Search for Happiness and Laugh Themselves to Death; Thank You for This Life; GRM – Brainfuck) as well as an alert commentator on our times in her columns and Twitter comments wrote this darkly humorous text in 2014, at the time the Pegida movement was on the rise. To this day, especially in a Federal election year, the monologue feels like looking at the nation through a keyhole. Berg creates a skilful balance between need and cynicism, between breaking taboos in a political discourse that is seen as dishonest and naked, toxic racism. In her production, director Anna Stiepani is also interested in the individual, human core inside this politically incorrect everyman. A lot of what Sibylle Berg allows him to say sounds reactionary or even fascistic. However, distancing oneself from him is harder than one thinks. And that is where the danger lies.

> The play Viel gut essen by Sibylle Berg has been published as an e-book. Read more here.


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Bernd Rademacher


Anna Stiepani

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