A Festival Series on Turkish-German relations
Leopard tanks in Afrin, a German chancellor that supports Erdoğan’s re-election campaign, the cynically so-called »refugee-deal« – current Turkish and German politics are linked in many ways, and they have been for quite a while. Almanya 2018, the title for the Gorki’s upcoming series of theatre productions, discussion events and performances about the relationship between Germany and Turkey and its history, refers to this connection: »Almanya« is the Turkish word for Germany.
The German tradition of pointing the finger at other countries, from an ostensibly lofty moral point of view, shall not be continued unabated at the Gorki. On the contrary, the goal of the series is to uncover both German as well as Turkish responsibility for political upheavals. This Almanya 2018 festival series at the Maxim Gorki Theatre seeks to formulate German-Turkish-Armenian history through a web of personal-political stories and thus reveal connections beyond the official postulates. Commemorating the genocide of the Armenians in the First World War and Germany’s shared responsibility for the crime has already become a tradition at the Gorki. This time, Armenian artists from Turkey are participating, who – like Hayko Bagdat – live in exile in Germany and still aren’t safe here from those persecuting them.
The performance Lö Bal Almanya 2018 will playfully and musically infiltrate the history of the German-Turkish community in Germany, in the context of the recruitment agreement between Germany and Turkey made 57 years ago. Its premiere on 25 May frames a themed weekend that offers a content-rich platform for discussions of the current tensions between Turkey and Germany, featuring a special edition of the Berliner Korrespondenzen series with Aslı Erdoğan (one of many prominent figures living in exile), a guest performance of a play that was censored in Turkey, Sadece Diktatör / Only Dictator, and a Turkish instalment of the Myths of Reality series under the title Süleymankurt.
A glimpse into the future for a trans-local confrontation between Berlin and Istanbul is offered by a theatre production based on the novel Außer Sich by Sasha Marianna Salzmann, adapted by Sebastian Nübling for the conclusion of the festival series in October.