New German dramatic art - Plays

Synchron ("Dubbing")

Sibylle and Franz, who want to see themselves as an ideal couple, get caught up in the impossibility of jointly experiencing the present moment. Sibylle dreams of a career in the theatre and Frunz, a writer by profession, of writing the perfect role for her. The reality is rather different. They work in a dubbing studio where Frunz and Sibylle lend their voices to performers in porno films - together with another couple, Elfi and Meier-Quassi, who are responsible for the crucial noises off.
From time to time this dubbing is interrupted from off-stage by the production manager's philosophical comments on various definitions of identity. A third, older couple, Herr und Frau Zumpe, symbolize the current state and future of the relationship between Sibylle and Franz. The two couples encounter one another in a restaurant in Venice where each had once spent their honeymoon. However they remain in a time-warp since in reality decades lie between them. Finally this interplay abolishes the characters' present moment so that they increasingly lose themselves between imaginings about how life could be and fragments of reality.

Responses to the Play

"Sibylle and Alfred Frunz always reach past each other into the void, always only embrace projections of the other and the hot air in between. Alfred ... is a would-be writer of comedies going through a crisis while producing a piece for Sibylle, an actress, intended to help her towards a breakthrough. Of course the play is never finished, and Sibylle feels that her true self is being spurned because Alfred only writes so as to make himself interesting to her, in the process transforming his wife into fiction - and then Alfred in turn also feels rejected. Each transforms him(or her)self into the other's nightmare: Sibylle becomes a voice and Alfred the suitcase in which he keeps his manuscript. However the problem facing the two of them only serves to conceal immanent failure of the attempt at being closely attuned". (Christopher Schmidt, Süddeutsche Zeitung online, 2.5.2002)

Technical Details

Premiere Zürich Schauspielhaus, 30.04.2002
Director Christoph Marthaler
Cast 5 women, 7 men, 1 set
Rights S. Fischer Verlag GmbH
Theater und Medien
Hedderichstr. 144
60596 Frankfurt am Main
Tel. 069/ 60 62 271, Fax 069/ 60 62 335
Translations Theatre Library