International contemporary drama and critical examination of present topics are what make the Renaissance-Theater so exciting.
Berlin’s Renaissance-Theater on Knesebeckstraße in Charlottenburg is the only fully surviving Art Deco theatre in Europe. Its focus under the artistic directorship of Horst-H. Filohn is on international contemporary drama, and its schedule is dominated by national and international premieres of works by prize-winning playwrights.
As well as the main productions you can attend readings and events such as the literary excursions, where biographies and new publications are presented, as well as musical and literary programmes in the Bruckner Foyer.
In recent years, plays such as Der letzte Vorhang with Suzanne von Borsody and Entartete Kunst – Der Fall Cornelius Gurlitt were very well received.
The 2016/2017 season will see top-ranking actors such as Katharina Thalbach, Boris Aljinović and Guntbert Warns on the stage.
Thanks to its many tours of German-speaking countries, the Renaissance-Theater’s productions are highly regarded outside Berlin too.
The history of the Renaissance-Theater
The Renaissance-Theater began in 1922 with Gotthold Ephraim Lessing’s Miss Sara Sampson. Its first director was the Austrian author Theodor Tagger, who under the pseudonym Ferdinand Bruckner became one of the most successful dramatists of the Weimar Republic.
During the Nazi period the theatre had to close, but it opened again shortly after the end of the war. With a combination of literary sophistication and entertainment, the theatre succeeded in establishing itself as a stage for the very best actors, and Helene Weigel, Otto Sander, Curt Goetz and many others have appeared on its stage.
The architecture of the Renaissance-Theater
Several years after the theatre was founded, the interior furnishings of the now-listed building were converted by the renowned architect Oskar Kaufmann in the Art Deco style of the 1920s with elements of rococo and expressionism. As well as the red rosewood panelling and the variety of decorative forms, one of the most striking objects is the auditorium’s large intarsia mural with motives of the Commedia dell’Arte. This jewel of theatrical architecture is something which has to be seen.
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