Anja Hilling

Monsun ("Monsoon")

“In her play, Anja Hilling creates an almost grotesque panorama of all too contemporary figures helplessly trying to keep pace with their own experiences. As if observing them through the eye of a camera, she analyses a lifestyle that proves, in the real time of the theatre, to be characterised by the fatal feeling something is missing. It takes a road accident and the death of a child to draw her characters’ lifelines together.
Bruno writes scripts for a soap opera called Tränenheim (Home of Tears). He loses his job as a result of the mess he makes of an interview. His assistant, with whom he is having an affair, is to be his successor.

Coco and Melanie, a lesbian couple, are trying desperately for a child. Their desire to become parents finally drives them apart. While Melanie is preparing her words of farewell in the car, she runs over Bruno and Paula’s son Zippo.

The intrusion of death into their modern, ordered circumstances forces the characters to relate to one another in new ways. And to leave behind lives lived within the dimensions of an early-evening serial. Death is real. They flee in different directions, Coco and Paula to the German countryside, Melanie to Vietnam. All of them seem utterly helpless in the face of what they have experienced. Bruno begins a new script, a really good one this time, no more trash. As the dead child is remembered, as their own histories are reconstructed, as their relationships are reordered, it becomes evident what is missing: Who is actually playing whom? Who remembers what and how?”

(Munich Kammerspiele, 2006)

Responses to the Play:

“Anja Hilling takes a plot [...], throws it onto paper, and it starts exploding in all directions: [...] grotesque wreckage, tilted, raggedly cut segments of images and, as tends to happen in these cases, one disruptive discontinuity gets tangled up in other, secondary discontinuities, scraps of an image turn up somewhere else, and certain elements of the various plot lines recur in ever new contexts, taking on quite different meanings. [...] Anja Hilling is a fantastic talent, coolly excited by the business of devising games, a glass-pearl-game player of distinction…”

(Michael Skasa, Frankfurter Rundschau, 18 January 2006)

“With her third play – after the melancholy drama of youth Sterne and the extremely successful apartment-block grotesque Mein junges idiotisches Herz –, Anja Hilling has dared to venture out onto the slippery terrain of lachrymose soap opera dramaturgy. Strokes of fate, infidelities, a little exoticism, tangled relationships… Monsun could be described as a dramatic field experiment designed to find out whether rare plants can grow on an overfertilised compost heap where it is normally only triviality that flourishes. And low and behold, this approach works, provided the delicate seedlings are tended in ways that take account of their particular needs.”

(Eva Behrendt, Theater Heute, 2/2006)

Technical Details:

World premiere

27 September 2005, Schauspiel Köln

Director

Jasper Brandis

Cast

4 female, 1 male, one female voice

Rights Felix Bloch Erben GmbH und Co. KG
Hardenbergstr. 6, D-10623 Berlin,
Tel.: 030-3139028, Fax: 030-3129334info@felix-bloch-erben.de
Translations Theatre Library