Europe‘s largest minority is comprised of millions of Sinti and Roma, yet despite their numbers and diversity, they are noticeably excluded from mainstream culture. Their image is influenced by stubborn clichés and prejudices. In light of a continued, discriminating narrative of “gypsies”, “travelling swindlers”, and “gypsy romances”, the research project “Gypsies” reversed the perspective by asking: How do various groups of Roma perceive their life in Europe? How do they view Europe and what role do national borders and national identities play? Has being excluded by the respective national majorities forced them to count themselves as part of different community? The goal of the project was to examine the difference between the self-perception and external labelling of the Sinti and Roma in Germany, Romania and France. Together with the participating actors, three project teams spend a week with a Roma family. There they conducted detailed interviews which, once transcribed, served as the basis for a multilingual play adaptation. The teams also collected songs, music and sounds on location as source material for new compositions. The play “Gypsies” was a coproduction between werkgruppe2, the Staatstheater Braunschweig, the Théâtre de la Manufacture in Nancy and the Nationaltheater Temeswar. The performances at all three venues have been accompanied by audience discussions.
The website documents the theatre project "Gypsies" and the results of the projects evaluation. "Gypsies" was developed by werkgruppe2 between 2016 and 2018 and performed in Germany, Romania and France.
Heimathafen Neukölln | Berlin
Junges Theater | Göttingen
Kulturzentrum Pavillon | Hannover
Staatstheater | Braunschweig
Nationaltheater, Temeswar (RS): 11 - 13 June 2017;
Théâtre de la Manufacture, Nancy: 14 - 16 Nov. 2017
Artistic directors: werkgruppe2 (Julia Roesler, Silke Merzhäuser)
Research: Julia Roesler, Silke Merzhäuser, Hamze Bytyci (RS)
Stage director: Julia Roesler
Set design and costumes: Charlotte Pistorius
Video: Charlotte Pistorius, Veronika Patočkov
Dramaturges: Silke Merzhäuser, Christine Besier
With: Simon Bourgade, Gina Călinoiu, Ursula Hobmair, Flavius Retea und den Musikern Dejan Jovanović (Akkordeon) und Dejan Jovanović (Violine)
A Cooperation between werkgruppe2, Théâtre de la Manufacture Nancy (F), National Theatre Temeswar (RO) and Staatstheater Braunschweig (D)