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Monday, February 28, 2005

If you happen to be in the are of London I would just recommend you go and see the production of Max Frisch’s “Biografie. Ein Spiel” being put on by King’s College London German Society this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Don’t worry if you don’t speak German, there are going to be English surtitles. It is a fascinating play, which has never failed to both entertain and stimulate anybody I know who has read it. Here’s this production’s blurb about it:

The play centres around one of the themes central to Frisch’s work, the attempt of the characters to rewrite their lives and test possible alternatives to their biographies. Hannes Kürmann, the play’s central character, is given the chance to re-live his life. In doing so, his goal is to avoid marrying his wife Antoinette, with whom he is deeply in love although the pair suffer from an unhappy marriage. In a play which contests the factors of pre-destined fate and that of chance, the numerous figures of Kürmann’s past reappear to witness his decisions. Again

Additionally this is a short analysis that introduces the main themes of wider interest being treated in the play.
One point I would just add is the opinion I heard recently, as concerns Frisch’s development as a writer. From Andorra, certainly Frisch’s bestknown play, it was argued that Frisch’s writing matured immensely in the intervening years. Andorra, as good as it is, is a fairly simple play; admittedly that’s probably one of the reasons it makes its message so well. But Biografie is a definite step forward in terms of the characterisations and the many levels of interpretation and meaning that Frisch has managed to weave into the play.
Well, all I can say is go and see it.



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