»Franziska is not a ›fight the battles along the way‹ heroine; she comes full of brilliant plans to this city where there’s nothing but sober arithmetic, quick and cheap construction (...) and now I am trying to get hold of all the people I can get my hands on to learn about the extent to which the architecture of a city shapes its inhabitants’ attitude toward life, and it seems to me that it contributes to the formation of the soul just as much as literature and painting, music, philosophy...« Brigitte Reimann, from her diaries and correspondence


»Why shouldn’t I enjoy my life? In ten or twenty years, everything will be over,« writes Brigitte Reimann, who was just 22 years old at the time, in her diary. And before she could turn 40, everything really would be over. She dies of cancer. Nevertheless, in her last novel, which would become a cult favourite, she created a sister »in spirit«, who lives on to this day. A merciless lover much like the author, the young architect Franziska Linkerhand chooses, after the »Wall«, the workers’ state of the GDR over her bourgeois origins. A character who polarizes, who hates, in all systems, the »flag-wavers«, »mediocre and cowardly idiots«. She is vital, rough, open, and hard for the real-existing patriarchy to bear. Moved by the dream of an advanced and yet social architecture, Franziska decides against a brilliant career and chooses the reality of Neustadt instead. This model of both functional and »beautiful socialist city«, the great experiment, quickly deteriorates, however, into the site of the »organised blunder«.

What drives the young architect is the love–hate relationship with construction sites, planning offices, the drunken nights, the men and women, the restlessly dangerous world of work and workers.

Sebastian Baumgarten reconstructs Franziska Linkerhand from different perspectives as a modern, contemporary female figure who neither wants nor is able to adapt to the constraints of life without a fight. On a stage designed by architect Sam Chermayeff, her dream is renegotiated, the dream of the »need to dream« that won’t come to an end as long as we keep moving.


Premiere 18/October 2024

Foto: Esra Rotthoff



Aleksandar Radenković

Katja Riemann

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Maria Simon

Alexandra Sinelnikova

Till Wonka