Gossip, ghosts, and memory: Mother courage and the forging of the Berliner Ensemble

Gitta Honegger

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Any actor taking on the role of Mother Courage takes on not only the ghost of Helene Weigel, whose performance of the role made theatre history, but also the notable past of the Berliner Ensemble, which began with the casting for the 1949 Berlin production under Soviet patronage and amidst the devastation of World War II and the Holocaust. The model ensemble was forged from a ragtag assembly of survivors whose individual and collective histories - professional and political - are deeply embedded in the play. In these times of endangered privacy and civil liberties, the genealogy of this historic ensemble serves again as a challenging model to examine the role of the theatre in society.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-117
Number of pages20
JournalTDR - The Drama Review - A Journal of Performance Studies
Volume52
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Literature and Literary Theory

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