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Resurrection of the birds

Play by Thiemo Strutzenberger, based on Bernhard C. Schär's «Tropenliebe»
World premiere/ Commissioned work

Altersempfehlung: ab 14 Jahren

Thiemo Strutzenberger – writer in residence at Theater Basel for the 2018 / 2019 season – places the Basel naturalists Paul and Fritz Sarasin at the centre of his play written as part of the development programme for emerging writers «Stück Labor Basel». In it he references the study on Swiss colonialism  «Tropenliebe» published 2015. In it Bernhard C. Schär follows the second cousins’ visits to British and Dutch colonies in Asia, from which they brought plants, animals and ethnographic objects back with them to Basel, where they founded the Ethnological Museum.

Thiemo Strutzenberger: «This tells the story of two of Basel’s patrician sons: naturalists, second cousins and lovers. A relationship that was lived out on research trips to the tropics, with them permanently being torn between the strict religious influence of their Protestant families and a desire for complete freedom. A battle between mission and evolution. The timeframe runs from 1877 to 1929. Place and time flow into one another, and become interwoven: their childhood and the time of their early adulthood with the end of one of their expeditions to the Dutch colony of Celebes and their return afterwards as respected scientists. The story of their lives is also reflected in surreal moments, in dreams, tropical birds and shadows. It is an attempt to search in the stories of the private lives of these two second cousins from Basel for the conditions and implications of their involvement with imperialism and to connect their lives with the history of money, knowledge, authority and violence».

Thiemo Strutzenberger was born in Upper Austria in 1982 and is an actor and playwright. He trained as an actor at the Max Rein­hardt Seminar in Vienna and completed a Master’s degree in Gender Studies at Vienna University. His play «The Zofen Suicides» received its world premiere in 2010. This was followed by his plays «Queen Recluse» (2013) and «Dogs of God» (2014), both premiered at the Vienna Schauspiel­haus. From 2015 to 2019 he was an ensemble member at Theater Basel, where he also directed «The End of Eddy» in the 2017 / 2018 season. 

Following her productions the novel adaptation «Esther. A Story from Bruderholz» and the chamber opera «The Emperor of Atlantis» the director Katrin Hammerl will return once again to Theater Basel.


Created as part of the playwriting development programme «Stück Labor Basel» at Theater Basel

Preisstufe 2 (von 30.– bis 40.–)

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