Barely out of childhood, Karl Roßmann crosses the ocean in the belly of a steamship. Cast out of Europe, the destination of this deportation is America. He enters a world completely new to him, which is either coming to an end or just emerging anew. Here these »forgotten« persons encounter existences, washed ashore from countries around the world, who search for space, a function, even a fiction, their »enaction« in a way that is just as compulsive as it is merciless. Karl moves and is moved, tries »to pass«, stumbles, and always does his best to finally find »happiness« as a nameless person.

Sebastian Baumgarten reassembles Kafka’s fragmentary novel at the Gorki in fragments of text, sounds and images. As an attempt to track, through the mechanisms of powerlessness, helplessness, injustice, irony and hope, a modern type of human, whose biggest difficulty, so it seems, is to say »no« in the midst of compact logics of exploitation.


Premiere on 14/January 2023

Stage adaption with excerpts from »America« by Jean Baudrillard and other texts by Franz Kafka

The extract from »Amérique« by Jean Baudrillard is reproduced with the agreement of the Editions Grasset & Fasquelle (Paris, France)

Photo: Esra Rotthoff
Stage photos: Ute Langkafel 


Stage design




Emre Aksızoğlu

Yanina Cerón

Tim Freudensprung

Kenda Hmeidan

Kinan Hmeidan

Flavia Lefèvre

Falilou Seck

Till Wonka

Werner Eng