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Pollesch’s “Passing” at the Munich Kammerspiele

IIn the beginning is the spider. With glowing eyes she hovers from the lace and then gropes her braided curves and iron limbs across a barren scree landscape. A UFO in the final moraine of human identity.

This existential filling is the latest embodiment of democratic thought processes in real time in René Pollesch’s discursive theater. It is called “Passing – It’s so easy, which is difficult to do”. Passing, not Pasing – “we have to be careful not to get stuck with our huge theories in a suburb of Munich”. This is the successful – and, of course, also successfully repeated – ingratiation by the Berliner, who is staging again at the Munich Kammerspiele after more than six years. Or should you say: saliva squeak?

“Nothing is connected to everything”

The huge theories that we are talking about are all based on the eight-legged set by Nina von Mechow, whose motherly symbolism spins the proverbial thread through the evening. The autonomy of this giant spider is, of course, an attempt to deceive, as it is attached to the threads of theater technology as a remote-controlled puppet. But that is exactly what it is about: deception that replaces reality.

The director and his ensemble read the science fiction literature about the “string figures” by Donna J. Haraway. The California biologist copied this “tentative thinking” from a spider species. “Nothing is connected to everything; everything is connected to something ”is her mantra – that alone sounds like a theory of the Pollesch theater. To save the planet, Haraway calls for the kinship transformation of the individual in the sense of the community of creation of all creatures and things. This in turn led the director to the phenomenon of “passing”, translated as “going through as”, as a sustainable pretense of a social identity. Specifically: The spider UFO is oddly manned.

Stranded as an inactive B-Movie team are five men and one woman who appear to be as interchangeable as the names of the faded film heroes with whom they address each other. Their costumes are a wild mix of their associations: Benjamin Radjaipour appears in the tweed suit of the nineteenth and Damian Rebgetz in the policeman look of the twentieth century, camel Najma and Kinan Hmeidan are in cowboy outfits. Kathrin Angerer, beautifully shrill and pouting sweet, blows up the American-nostalgic frame as a red and white harlequin. With a floppy hat, western chain and coffee cup, Thomas Schmauser gives the absent-minded desert director who carries the evening’s script as a DKP manifesto. After all, when it comes to deception, anything is possible, and the actor in the role of the actor has always been astonished by Pollesch. Also, it doesn’t come as a big surprise that it doesn’t take long on the set of Desert Rock to get to Brecht’s Epic Theater and Piscators’ proletarian theater.

Tarantula apocalypse and shrink horror

For the theatrical conquest as a means of propaganda, Pollesch formulates a nasty little proletarian hymn on the leaflet: “Even if it is lying on the floor, it can be read. Of those who are lying on the floor. ”It culminates in the suggestion that the spider, here symbolizing both handwork and brainwork, should distribute the leaflets:“ It has eight arms! ”

The Munich audience goes to this Pollesch online in a happy and cheerful mood. Although a lot revolves around itself in the ninety minutes. The socially critical saliva of the staging flows diligently through culture and politics, theories and stories repeat themselves in variations. As always in the Pollesch tote bag theater, no interpretation is left to chance. The viewer is the consumer in the supermarket of criticism of capitalism, the visitor in the petting zoo of social network theories. For example, when Radjaipour and Rebgetz sit in the rush belly of the mother spider and the wisdom of life pulls around their noses as chewing gum, giggling at the successful picture of the threads of fate.

In the last third, however, the evening begins to drag on. The designated director of the Volksbühne on Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz also seems to have noticed this. The audience is caressed again: an ingeniously painted stage brochure shows the ruins of Munich Central Station. Oh well. With much good will there is also an assertion of reality according to the motto: “It is the pure present that is gone.”

Even with the cinema cross-references to spider-passing, the audience gets stuck despite the too long breath. As a multimedia entertainment digression, Pollesch pasted it to its premiere. Between home idyll and action thriller, Hitchcock and Spiderman as well as isolated Eisler sounds that mix with the Trapp musical “The Sound of Music”, there is a tarantula apocalypse and shrinking horror to be experienced. Meanwhile, Kathrin Angerer’s Harlequin turned out to be a real western lady – apparently a successful passing. In the end there is man. With shining eyes he sits on the spinning wheel, immersed in the endless work on his tentacular identity.


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