Edgar Hilsenrath, a German and Jewish author born in 1926, left Germany in 1938 together with his parents. He went to Romania, then Palestine and finally to the United States, where he began to write. His book »Der Nazi und der Friseur« was published in 1970 in the United States, turned out be a worldwide bestseller, but a German publisher could not be found regardless. People were not ready yet to make jokes about Nazis. Edgar Hilsenrath returned to Germany in 1975 because he missed his big love too much - the German language. »Der Nazi und der Friseur« was finally published in its original language in 1978. He also published the book »Das Märchen vom letzten Gedanken«, which is about the Armenian genocide.
Weill and Hilsenrath never met, although they lived in New York at the same time. The Turkish government does still not admit to the genozide the Armenians suffered. It was the first genocide of the 20th century and the Nazis learned a lot from it. Weill and Hilsenrath, both being sons of Jewish mothers, left Germany at the right time.
The evening interlinks various performing arts. Music, literature, film, acting. It is narrated from the perspective of two abstractions: The one of the idea of the narrator and the one of the last thought, that a person has before he/she dies. It is said that one sees his whole life flashing before his eyes.
The music from Weill is improvised from the French jazzpianist Guillaume de Chassy.
Concept, directing and acting: Katja Riemann
Music: Guillaume de Chassy
Film and Visuals: Paula Riemann
Acting in Film: Jasmin Tabatabal
A production of the Jüdische Kulturtage Berlin in cooperation with the Renaissance-Theater Berlin
Foto: Katja Riemann, © Mirjam Knickriem