by Maja Zade
Direction: Marius von Mayenburg
Young and attractive Flo gets a job as an estate agent. He enjoys selling flats and having contact with the customers, but his colleagues in the agency are a smoothly operating team of women who don’t make things easy for the male newcomer, never mind the only other man in the company, tasty office secretary Manni, who appears to regard Flo as the competition …
Young and attractive Flo gets a job as a trainee assistant at a chemist’s. But his initial joy at securing the position and his interest in the diverse product line, are soon marred by the behaviour of self-satisfied, overweight branch manager Daniela, who declares him »a matter for the boss« and refuses to recognise any boundaries …
Young and attractive Flo performs classical monologues halfnaked in a theatre and is hired as an actor. He is fascinated by the charismatic, authoritarian artistic director Bettina. An intense working relationship swiftly develops between the two in which artistic interest seamlessly merges into a sexual one … The three young and attractive Flos are all at the beginning of their careers and are all actually called Florian. But in a society where women call the shots, every Florian becomes a Flo.
»status quo« depicts the world as it is, but in its mirror image. The object of desire and discrimination – in both the workplace and at home – is the male. This inversion of the real balance of power pointedly allows the mechanisms of inequality to emerge in a satire that is both biting and funny. The sufferings of the three Flos reveal the absurdity of a power imbalance that has become so commonplace we regard it as normal.
Maja Zade is an author and dramaturg at the Schaubühne. She also works as a translator, including of Marius von Mayenburg’s plays into English. »status quo« is her first play produced at the Schaubühne, followed by »abgrund« in April.
>>> Essay about the production in Pearson's Preview: »status quo's« Mirror on Injustice (and Patriarchy in the Theatre)
Duration: ca. 130 minutes
Premiered on 18 January 2019