At the beginning of the 80ies, following Hamletmaschine, Heiner Müller wrote a dialogue that’s only 14 lines long. The play begins with »ONE: May I lay my heart at your feet. / TWO: If you don’t soil my floor. / ONE: My heart is pure. / TWO: We’ll see about that.« This is followed by open-heart surgery, then »So that’s it. But it’s a brick. Your heart is a brick.« Maybe this little piece of text is nothing more than a gag. Perhaps it’s just an étude from a tired playwright from before the Berlin Wall fell. But perhaps it’s also Heiner Müller’s next step as the great compressor of data. A play about love and time, about work and despair.
In Herzstück, Sebastian Nübling and his ensemble of hardworking harlequins are continuing the work they began with Hamletmaschine. Its short length makes Herzstück a provocation that aims at the core of the question of work. In times of flexible working hours and bullshit jobs, of neo-precariousness and the start-up proletariat, of exploitations disguised as freedom and much-hailed lack of alternatives, clowns highlight the holes in the procedure, the mistakes in the frictionless system of the pressure to perform that makes contemplation possible: for whom are we actually working how much on what?
Come in! Today we’re showing: A little piece of heart about working on farce, about not working as rebellion, about theater as disruption and Heiner Müller as the head of a circus of rebellious clowns in the capitalist autumn.
Please note that there is no late admission possible after the beginning of the play.
Premiere on 16/August 2020
Photo: Esra Rotthoff
Stage photos: Ute Langkafel
»The show’s frenzied, absurdist style frequently yields laughs from the audience, as the clowns, who manage to establish surprisingly distinct personalities in a vacuum of actual plot, continuously change their activities onstage and the overall direction of the show. Highlights include Dominic Hartmann’s role as a frustrated master of ceremonies, Karim Daoud’s laconic Müller-esque asides throughout, and Vidina Popov’s unhinged monologue that comes at the climax of the piece.«