Plays

Winterreise (Winter Journey)

Franz Schubert composed his Winter Journey in 1827, a year before his premature death. Elfriede Jelinek, who started learning the piano when she was five years old and later studied various instruments, has been haunted by this song cycle since her childhood. More ...

The Merchant’s Contracts

‘With The Merchant’s Contracts, Jelinek immerses herself in the world of uncontrolled financial flows. Starting from a number of the business scandals that have been reported in Austria over the last few years, Jelinek, an uncompromising investigator, shows us the frenzied speculation in which bankers and managers engage. More ...

Rechnitz (The Exterminating Angel)

‘Someone at a party picks up a gun late at night and murders nearly 200 people on a whim. Is it possible to imagine something of this kind actually happening? Hardly, except as a vision of horror. More ...

Ulrike Maria Stuart

Two queens battle for discursive power. Elfriede Jelinek's play reunites Schiller's Mary Stuart and Elizabeth I again as Ulrike Meinhof and Gudrun Ensslin. Still united only in their antagonism, the one doubting (Ulrike/Mary), the other unbendingly convinced of the necessity of her own actions (Gudrun/Elizabeth), they bring to life once more the history of the RAF, which found its bloody highpoint almost 30 years ago, in 1977, during the German Autumn. More ...

Das Werk (i.e., "The Works")

This play, the last part of Jelinek's Alps trilogy, is concerned with the human mania for technological progress, symbolized to the ultimate degree by the history of the storage power station at Kaprun. More ...