Montblanc & Salzburg Festival Young Directors Project
Bastian Kraft • YDP II • Everyman
based on the play Jedermann by Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Co-production with Thalia Theater Hamburg
With English surtitles
Print program (PDF)
Bastian Kraft, Concept and Stage Director
Peter Baur, Stage Sets and Video
Dagmar Bald, Costumes
Beate Heine, Dramaturgy
Simonne Jones, Music
If I had to take stock of my life this very moment – what verdict would I reach? If I were to die today, what would remain when all is said and done? Since we have all more or less banned death from our daily lives, we rarely ask ourselves this question. But it strikes at the very heart of this existence of prosperity and unlimited freedom that we lead: we lack a frame of reference which helps us orient our lives. Who can tell me what it is that makes living worthwhile in the end? Money and profession? Family, friends, love? Happiness in the Here and Now?
Everyman, a literary mystery play, gives its answer by resorting to Christian beliefs. It is our deeds that will count in the end. But is this a valid answer for someone who has renounced the faith? Today we recognize God and the Devil more clearly than ever as characters in a theatre play, conceived by man in order to tell himself a meaningful story. That death, however, is more than just a figure on the stage must be self-evident to even the most secular of sceptics. So – how do we fill the gap that abandoning religion has left in our lives? That capitalism is but an unsatisfactory substitute was already lamented by Hofmannsthal himself.
There seems no alternative today but that Everyman – and every woman – should have to search for the answer within themselves. Our scepticism regarding all kinds of extrinsically prescribed doctrines of salvation leads us to the demand, directed at the Self and almost impossible to realize, to find the right path on its own accord, without any outside help. Thus modern man – and woman – are thrown back on to their own selves. If they search at all, they have to look for the divine inside themselves and must needs create all the characters of their own mystery play from within.
Equipped with Hofmannsthal’s text and some highly secular theatre magic, the actor Philipp Hochmair will embark in this solo-piece on a many-voiced dialogue with himself.
Translated by Vera Neuroth