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Digital circle reading of 'My Young and Foolish Heart'

  • Published at 01:53 pm November 4th, 2020
My Young and Foolish Heart

The German play will be read online on November 4 at 7pm

The Goethe-Institut Bangladesh in partnership with HerStory Foundation will host a digital circle reading of "My Young and Foolish Heart" a play by Anja Hilling in English on November 4 at 7pm via ZOOM. The event is open to an adult audience upon registration and the text will be provided. The short 6-character play explores the topics of memory, will, love and interpersonal connections.

About the play

On a very normal day in a very normal block of flats, Miss Schlüter on the fourth floor decides it is to be her last: “At three o’clock, sharp, I will be a tragic woman,” she says. Yet she is not particularly poor, old or ugly – at most a little lonely and, above all, a perfectionist who plans everything down to the last detail.

Six people live out their lives, cross each other’s paths and get to know each other bit by bit. Each of them is by turns the observer and the observed, the narrator and the narrated so that the repetition of the same situations gradually builds up into something approaching a multi-perspective 3D puzzle.        

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At the end, the postman lies dead in the laundry room but, despite her firm intentions, Miss Schlüter has not killed herself and Paula Lachmär, who has spoken her first word in 69 days, spontaneously invites Miroslaw to try some goulash. A kaleidoscope of catastrophes, in which the characters live cut off from each other in their little cells, becomes a colourful curiosity cabinet populated by wistful urban neurotics. Connections are established, monologues become discussions and an old song by Doris Day floats over the whole piece. 

Surprisingly, however, none of these alarmingly skewed normal existences is even just a little bit exaggerated. After all, who says caretakers always have to talk like caretakers? And what do caretakers talk like anyway? Or postmen? Or rape victims? At first, the half dozen stories of unspectacularly messed-up lives and loves circle unobtrusively around each other, then they collide with the precision of a delicate mechanism like a handful of billiard balls that sometimes knock each other off their paths through life or miss a black hole by millimetres. Restrained by just enough wit to rule out pity. 

About the writer

Born in 1975, Anja Hilling, is a graduate of the course in creative writing for the stage at the University of the Arts, Berlin, where she studied from 2002 to 2006 after doing a degree in theatre studies and German literature at Munich and Berlin. It was while she was at the University of the Arts that she wrote her first play. This earned her an invitation to the Stückemarkt at the 2003 Berlin Theatertreffen, where she was awarded the Dresdner Bank Young Dramatists’ Prize.

Participants can register for the online event at https://forms.gle/dkfDqEoVLWhEkycD7

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