Concept, Text and Direction: Milo Rau

What do we mean by ›flight‹? And what by ›homeland‹? What will the new Europe look like? As the finale of the »European Trilogy«, a three-year examination of the myth and the reality of Europe, »Empire« presents biographical close-ups of people who have come to Europe as refugees or who live on its perimeters. After a look at Western Europe’s ideological homelessness in »The Civil Wars« and at war and forced migration in the former Yugoslavia, Russia and Germany in »The Dark Ages«, in »Empire« actors from Greece, Syria and Romania recount artistic and real tragedies, torture, flight, mourning, death and rebirth. What happens to people who have lost all their belongings or their homeland through crises and war? An intimate portrait told on an epic scale emerges of a continent whose past has been fractured many times and whose future is uncertain. In »Empire« three years’ worth of consideration of the cultural roots, political present and future of the European continent is pursued and brought to completion: Europe equally as a mythical and pragmatic empire, the Europeans as bearers of ancient traditions and of the eternal homo migrans.

>>> Essay about the production in Pearson's Preview: Empire« on and off-stage: A Conversation with Milo Rau

A production of the IIPM – International Institute of Political Murder. In co-operation with the Zürcher Theater Spektakel, the Schaubühne at the Lehniner Platz Berlin and the Steirischer Herbst Graz. Sponsored by: The Governing Mayor of Berlin – Senate Chancellery – Cultural Affairs, Hauptstadtkulturfonds Berlin, Pro Helvetia and Migros-Kulturprozent. Kindly supported by Kulturförderung Kanton St.Gallen.

Trailer © Marc Stephan, IIPM


Concept, text and direction: Milo Rau
Set and Costume Design: Anton Lukas
Video: Marc Stephan
Dramaturgy and Research: Stefan Bläske, Mirjam Knapp

Duration: ca. 120 minutes

Premiered on 8 September 2016

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