LENIN

by Milo Rau & Ensemble
Direction: Milo Rau


World Premiere

In 1917 Russia is shaken by the October Revolution. Just a few years later, socialism has been implemented. Lenin, the ringleader of the revolution, is in a dacha near Moscow battling physical and mental decay. His bitter fight against political adversaries, struggle with the reluctant Bolsheviks for a revolutionary intervention, indefatigable work to bring about a new society based on Marxist principles, an assassination attempt by anarchist Fanny Kaplan and several severe strokes have all weakened this brilliant theoretician, revolutionary and charismatic political leader. Surrounded by a depleted inner circle, cut off from the Central Committee, he fights to retain his political influence. His companion Trotsky, cultural politician Lunacharsky and others who visit Lenin’s dacha conjure up recollections of the brief moment in history when everything seemed possible. But Lenin’s failing body and weakened spirit mean the »greatest mind of the 20th century« is on his own. And, scheming to become his successor, his opponent Stalin is already waiting in the wings. In »LENIN« Milo Rau and the Schaubühne Ensemble look via Lenin’s brain to what is arguably the most momentous revolution in the history of humankind: in a society caught between awakening and apathy, revolutionary longing and reactionary opposition – a labyrinth of hope and fear, of political ideals and the collective experience of violence.

>>> Essay about the production in Pearson's Preview: Creative Unrest. Milo Rau’s »LENIN«

Duration: ca. 120 minutes