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The 10 Selected Productions

Reich des Todes

by Rainald Goetz

Reich des Todes. Video trailer © Deutsches SchauSpielHaus Hamburg

4:30:00 PM
Live stream from Deutsches SchauSpielHaus Hamburg
4 h 15 min, one break
In German with English subtitles

About this Production

Over a distance of nearly twenty years, Rainald Goetz looks back at 11 September 2001 and its aftermath, at the “War on Terror” and the barbarity of Guantanamo. Goetz is not interested in a documentary reconstruction of events. Instead, he sketches an iridescent genre picture of politics in a state of emergency, rich in references and invitations to association, looking far back and far ahead into history, right up to our immediate, crisis-ridden present day. In Karin Beier’s staging, the world premiere at Hamburg’s SchauSpielHaus becomes a frenzied theatre experience. Jörg Gollasch’s sinister and threatening sound world complements Goetz’s agitated language.

The world premiere production of “Reich des Todes (Empire of Death)” deals with topics including the abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib. In this context, the production features scenes, projected images and photos of the affected persons, showing mental, physical and sexualised violence and nudity.

Artistic Team

Karin Beier Director
Johannes Schütz Set design
Costume design
Eva Dessecker, Wicke Naujoks
Jörg Gollasch Composer and musical director / Composer and musical supervisor for “Beschluss”, Act V
Voxi Bärenklau Video design
Rita Thiele, Ralf Fiedler
Annette ter Meulen Lighting design
Christine Groß Supervision of spoken chorus “Desastres de la Guerra”, Act IV
Valentí Rocamora i Torà Physical training and choreographic collaboration
Vanessa Christoffers-Trinks Collaboration video research
Anna Werner Production management


Sebastian Blomberg Selch, Vice President
Maximilian Scheidt Pinsk, Private Secretary / Braum, Lance Corporal / Trenck, Corporal
Holger Stockhaus Dr Banzhaf, Chief Legal Officer
Lars Rudolph Thurgau, Director of Intelligence
Sandra Gerling Ms von Ade, Security Advisor
Wolfgang Pregler Grotten, President
Burghart Klaußner Minister of War
Anja Laïs Mrs Grotten, Wife / Darkova, Brigadier General
Daniel Hoevels Dr Schill, Judicial Councillor / Braum, Lance Corporal
Markus John Dr Kelsen, Chief Justice / Braum, Lance Corporal
Michael Weber Sebald, Minister of Justice / Braum, Lance Corporal
Tilman Strauß Braum, Lance Corporal / Trenck, Corporal / Atta, Prisoner
Eva Bühnen Cindy, Security Guard
Josefine Israel Eve, Soldier / Trenck, Corporal


Fanis Gioles, Yuko Suzuki
Wassim Mukdad Oud
Michael Heupel Cello
Anna Lindenbaum Viola
Camilla Busemann Violin

Samuli Emery, João Pedro de Paula, Sayouba Sigué, Valentí Rocamora i Torà

Premiere September 11, 2020

Deutsches SchauSpielHaus Hamburg

We are showing the production “Reich des Todes (Empire of Death)” in cooperation with the 46th Mühlheimer Theatertage “Stücke”.

Performing rights: Suhrkamp Theater Verlag, Berlin

Berliner Festspiele
Berliner Festspiele are funded by
Die Beauftragte der Regierung für Kultur und Medien
Neu Start Kultur
Theatertreffen is funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation
Kulturstiftung des Bundes
funded by
Die Beauftragte der Regierung für Kultur und Medien
Media Partner