Tag Archives: Theatre & Film

Weimar Cinema at Berlinale 2018

Bildschirmfoto 2017-11-24 um 15.30.32Weimar film fans have something to celebrate in 2018: the Berlin Film Festival Berlinale has just announced a whole section devoted to Weimar cinema next year, from Georg Lamprecht’s gritty proletarian drama Die Unehelichen (1926) to  Friedrich Dalsheim and Gulla Pfeffer’s ethnographic documentary Menschen im Busch (1931):”The Retrospective of the 68th Berlin International Film Festival will focus on the great variety of cinema in the Weimar era. Some one hundred years ago, at the end of World War I and the dawn of the Weimar Republic, one of the most productive and influential phases in German filmmaking began unfolding, a creative era that went on to shape international perception of the country’s film culture, even to the present day. For “Weimar Cinema Revisited”, the festival will present a total of 28 programmes of narrative, documentary, and short films made between 1918 and 1933. … Most of the silent film screenings will be accompanied by music played live by internationally renowned musicians.”

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Pamela Hutchinson on the History of Silent Film

The journalist Pamela Hutchinson is regularly writing about the  history of silent film and its stars. For her column “Silent but deadly!“, appearing fortnightly in The Guardian, she has covered Clara Bow, Lotte Reiniger, and Rudolph Valentino. She also writes for Sight&Sound and Silent London. An interesting resource for any scholars of silent cinema!

Mahagonny at the Royal Opera House

brechtThe Royal Opera House in London is staging Brecht and Weill’s The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny as a parable on the current financial crisis. Philip Hensher has written an interesting background piece about the history of the opera in The Guardian.

Journal Review: German Studies Review 1/2015

gsrcoversmallIn the current edition of German Studies Review, published in February, Maria Makela argues that the contemporary popularization of scientific knowledge about gonads and their hormonal secretions was an inspiration for much visual and literary culture produced in Germany in the 1920s: Continue reading

Festival Mythos Berlin

Mythos_835x300In March, the Konzerthaus on Gendarmenmarkt is hosting Festival Mythos Berlin, a series of concerts and events celebrating 1920s Berlin. The highlight of the festival is the European premiere of Marc Blitzstein’s 1928 one-act opera Triple Sec. Die Sünde des Lord Silverside.

Unfortunately, the organisers have missed the opportunity to include the Konzerthaus’s own role in Weimar history as the backdrop of Gustaf Gründgens‘ career in the early 1930s – the subject of Klaus Mann’s infamous novel Mephisto.

New Study on Weimar Dance

9780199844838Kate Elswit’s new study Watching Weimar Dance puts the focus on the audience, bringing insights from Dance, Theatre, and Performance Studies to Weimar Studies and offering a new view on Weimar culture with a focus on spectatorship: ‘Watching Weimar Dance asks what audiences saw on stages from cabaret and revue to concert dance and experimental theatre in the turbulent moment of the Weimar Republic.
Spectator reports that performers died or became half-machine archive not only the physicality of past performance, but also the ways audiences used the temporary world of the theatre to negotiate pressing social issues, from female visibility within commodity culture to human functioning in an era of increasing technologization. Continue reading

Weimar Film and Jewish Identity

9780230341364In reading popular films of the Weimar Republic as candid commentaries on Jewish acculturation, Ofer Ashkenazi’s Weimar Film and Modern Jewish Identity ‘provides an alternative context for a re-evaluation of the infamous “German-Jewish symbiosis” before the rise of Nazism, as well as a new framework for the understanding of the German “national” film in the years leading to Hitler’s regime.’

–> Review (in German)