Staged Reading Terror, by Ferdinand von Schirach

Terror, von Ferdinand von Schirach © Ferdinand von Schirach

Mon, 06/03/2019

Goethe-Institut Washington

1990 K St. NW (Entrance on 20th St., lower level)
Washington, DC 20006

The Goethe-Institut Washington, together with Scena Theatre, presents Spotlight: Berlin, a series of Berlin play workshops featuring selections of the latest and most sensational plays to appear on the Berlin stage. These staged readings will take place on June 3, July 1, and August 26. All play readings will be in English.

The first play featured is Ferdinand von Schirach’s Terror (Terror – Ihr Urteil).

Major Lars Koch, pilot of a German Army Eurofighter, faces your verdict. A Lufthansa-Airbus is high-jacked by terrorists; Major Koch is ordered to divert the Airbus from its course - can he do the right thing? There are 164 people on board Flight LH 2047, Berlin to Munich. The Airbus has suddenly changed course for the Allianz-Arena where a capacity crowd of 70,000 have gathered for the Germany verses England international. Major Koch must react. What are his orders? If the terrorist do not change course, can he, should he, shoot down a passenger jet? The clock ticks, Lars Koch makes a decision.

Ferdinand von Schirach’s debut play questions the very notion of human dignity. Can any human life be measured against others, regardless of the number? What circumstances could there ever be be, to avoid one catastrophe with possibly a smaller catastrophe? Who is responsible? Is it only Lars Koch alone here on trial?

The Jury decides.
RSVP Germany’s Der Spiegel called Ferdinand von Schirach “a magnificent storyteller”, the New York Times an “exceptional stylist” and the British Independent compared him to Kafka and Kleist.

Ferdinand von Schirach’s story collections Crime and Guilt,and his novels The Collini Case and The Girl Who Wasn’t There were bestsellers, selling in millions in 35 different countries. Schirach has received many literature awards, internationally too; these include the prestigious Kleist Prize.

France’s Liberation accounts for his success so: “Schirach’s master-stroke is to show that no matter how monstrous the deed is, human beings remain human beings.”

Ferdinand von Schirach lives in Berlin.