A musical-theatrical walk in the footsteps of the history of the epidemic
"Why don't you come closer? We don't need distance!"
Entertaining and amusingly bizarre street theatre from Pest to Corona
- including guaranteed infection with information, sarcasm and irony
16 performances in 2021-2022 Open Air in Hannnover
Based on historical facts, the artists of Ensemble Megaphon and Ensemble Sozusingen, under the direction and leadership of Lenka Zupkova, transformed the forgotten epidemics into musical-theatrical miniatures. In the guise of an interactive city tour on the history of epidemics, music met documentary theatre and dance sequences. In selected places, performers inspired their audiences to become actors themselves, for example in musical protection rituals. The audience processed through the urban space and experienced the multi-layered aspects of the history of viruses and epidemics on urban society in performative interventions. While composer Tatjana Prelevic wove singing, music, language and percussion into musical-theatrical images, the costumes by visual artist Inge-Rose Lippok infected with their diversity. The music theatre Infectus Hannover thus sensually, visually and provocatively brought to mind the memories of surviving pandemics and made the connections to the present tangible.
- Ensemble Megaphon
- Lena Castrup /Christiane Ostermayer (Acting)
- Vlady Bystrov (wind instruments)
- Grzegorz Krawczak (Violoncello)
- Kai Altendorf, Willi Hanne (percussion)
- Oren Lazovski (dance, accordion)
- Ensemble Sozusingen
- Marianne Garlic
- Eva-Maria Kösters
- Heide Müller
- Simon Jass
- Jorge Kröger
- Iris Brandner
- Bernd-Arnd Korstock
- Director and artistic director: Lenka Zupkova
- World premiere free after texts by Tayfun Bademsoy
- Composition: Tatjana Prelevic
- Set and costumes: Inge Rose Lippok
- Make-up: Kristin Wolter
- Idea: Marcus Peter
Hanover. What do Pandemie and Lockdown do to artists who have had to forego live performances and direct audience contact for months and who have had to regroup? The answer came last weekend. Ensemble Megaphon and the ensemble "Sozusingen" presented an epidemic-historical-musical city tour in Hanover's city centre.
"Lenka Župkova's directing team came up with an ingenious idea and created an interdisciplinary musical theatre. At six original locations, the actors acted, recited, sang, danced and played music for all it was worth - always enriched with well researched historical facts, presented in a winking and extremely likeable manner. A small but interested audience was led musically and theatrically to the historical pandemic sites and confronted with vivid historical, extremely touching facts from Hanover's epidemic history. Sensual, pictorial and provocative were the order of the day - but always entertaining. The performance, in which even the musicians were involved, became an extremely lively street music theatre thanks to the conceptually planned street noises and passers-by' conversations. The score by the Montenegrin composer Tatjana Prelevic was virtually written to the ensembles' liking. The long-standing collaboration with project director Lenka Župkova, who leads the directing and artistic team, and the visual artist Inge-Rose Lippok, who designed the set and costumes, resulted in a work with moving depths, which was realised according to the texts by Tayfun Bademsoy and Katharina Peter. Oren Lazovski danced impressively as the Angel of Death, the Beast and the Fool, almost incidentally playing the accordion, while clarinettist Vlady Bystrov played the Magician and the Pied Piper and led the procession to the next place. Grzegorz Krawczak on cello as a doctor and Kai Altendorf on drums as an alchemist and medieval cook completed the action. In addition to the role of the Greek choir, the choristers of "Sozusingen" skilfully and routinely took over the plague mask performances and the rat regiment. Marianne Knoblauch, Eva-Maria Kösters, Heide Müller, Simon Jass and Jorge Kröger were experienced vocal artists who enriched the evening in every respect. The performance by Lena Castrup, who appeared as a tour guide, moderator, quizmaster, androgynous being, virus and seductive Eva, was downright delightful.
At the end, the enthusiastic audience was richer in many facts and an extremely enjoyable evening. With the famous Comedian Harmonists classic "Irgendwo, auf der Welt gibt's ein kleines bisschen Glück" (Somewhere in the world there's a little bit of luck), the ensembles said goodbye and earned well-deserved, long-lasting applause. "Hans Krauss, musicologist and journalist
Photos: Ghazaleh Ghazanfari, Joachim Puppel, Gerd Kis
Performing Arts Fund, MWK Lower Saxony, Lower Saxony Foundation, Innovation Fund of the LHH and the Lotto Foundation; Cultural Office LHH Hanover
For the conception of the project, the Megaphon Ensemble received the "Reload Scholarship of the Federal Cultural Foundation".