On the Death of Siegfried Lenz ? ?You have to justify your life?

Siegfried Lenz, one of the great writers of German post-war literature is dead. He died on 7 October 2014, surrounded by his family. He was 88 years old.... more more

GoetheInstitute

21/06/2006

From the Feuilletons is a weekly overview of what's been happening in the German-language cultural pages and appears every Friday at 3 pm. CET.. Here a key to the German newspapers.

Die Welt, 21.06.2006

Mick Jagger
and Vaclav Havel raved. Thomas Kielinger joined in; after a four year pause, Tom Stoppard has reappeared with one of the "most fascinating premieres that London has seen in the last years" in the Royal Court Theatre. "Rock 'n' Roll" is about a Czech student Jan who, in 1967, has to choose between Cambridge and Prague. "The Czech conflict plays itself out in bourgeois academic Cambridge; abstract theories of political rule meet the intrepid demands of humanity for free self realisation. In between them, the riff-raff, drawn from all generations, in both Cambridge and Prague, brilliantly portrayed by Stoppard. A gripping palette of passions, cerebral and sensual at once, whose colours first join to form a united picture in the Velvet Revolution of 1990."


Frankfurter Rundschau, 21.06.2006

Alexander Kuly has visited the exhibition "No. 250," of the work of Herzog & de Meuron, in Munich's Haus der Kunst and warns visitors not to expect to see much of the Basel-based architects' most recent work in Munich (Fünf Höfe and Allianz-Arena), London (Tate Modern), Cottbus (TU Library), Tokyo (Prada Aoyama Epicenter) and San Francisco (de Young Museum). Instead, they will be treated to a "glimpse into the studio. You see videos of everyday life in the office. Employees making sandwiches, talking, standing around a table, discussing. And on wallpaper tables stretched with bits and pieces of grid paper, exhibition objects, waiting for dissection. Material tests of every kind and every material. A rough cardboard model, that has been cut out as fast as it was glued together." While Kuly would liked a more classic presentation of the architects' work, he admits, "All this Arte povera of models underscores the will and the variety of the formal path. And shows what architecture is: the fight for sensual elements. And the obstacles."


Die Tageszeitung, 21.06.2006

Clemens Meyer, whose first novel "Als wir träumten" (While we were dreaming - more here) attracted much attention at the Leipzig Book Fair in March, says in an interview with Gerrit Bartels that he has high hopes for the prestigious Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, awarded at the end of a three-day literary marathon which starts in Klagenfurt tomorrow (more on last year's prize here). 22,500 euros in prize money are awarded at the event. "It's time I won a really big prize, and I hope I'll be so lucky! It's not as if my novel had sold masses of copies, and that I was now rich. I need the Klagenfurt money, every penny. I simply have to come away from Klagenfurt with one prize or another." Even if that doesn't work, he does intend to stay a full-time writer: "Well then, I'll go on the dole again. I write for papers on the side, but I don't do everything. The Welt am Sonntag wanted me to write about neo-nazi No-go-Areas. I said no, despite all the money they were offering."


Die Welt, 21.06.2006


Elmar Krekeler reflects on the importance of the Ingeborg Bachman Prize, and the competition leading up to it in the Austrian town of Klagenfurt. "Long before the audio book revolution, long before slam poetry, open mike and other pop culture versions of public viewing literature, people visiting Klagenfurt could experience literature as an acoustic phenomenon in a competitive environment. At this literary fair, literature must pass an acoustic test, just as it was in the beginnings of literary history… Here, storytellers tell their stories and are immediately penalised or rewarded… Long before the advent of fancily displayed TV reviews of literature, Klagenfurt, in its golden moments, was able to prove that books can best be conveyed to readers not through weird clips or frantic interviews ideally broadcast via the emotional medium of TV, but through lively discussion. Book culture is debate culture. And in these times of so-called debate culture, one can sometimes actually learn something new from book culture."


Süddeutsche Zeitung, 21.06.2006

At the end of June, a test trial will start against Google Book Search, Google's plan to make 15 million books available online by 2015. The action is being brought by the publisher Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, with the support of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association, on the grounds that libraries that make their books available to the Google Book Search do not own the rights to the books in question, writes Martin Reischke. "As opposed to Jean-Noel Jeanneney, president of the French Bibliotheque Nationale, who fears an American-influenced literary canon and is therefore pushing for a European counter-model, the motivation of the German book publishers is far more profane – and pragmatic."


Berliner Zeitung, 21.06.2006

In 2003, the Berlin's three opera houses were united under the "Stiftung Oper Berlin", or Berlin Opera Foundation. The foundation was created to organise a budget cut from 113 million euros in 2003 to 96 million in 2009. Michael Schindhelm, general director of the Foundation, explains in an interview why the body is already ready for an overhaul. The opening balance statement shows that the foundation "was in the red from day one." For Schindhelm, the low ticket sales and the job chart are to blame. "The job chart provides for cutting roughly 220 of 2,000 jobs. But what does this number express? It doesn't take account of the fact that new jobs will also be created, such as that of the general director and his small team, or the stage service with 15 planned management posts. It also fails to take account of the fact that some of the employees can't be laid off, and that many of the jobs that will be cut are in the low-wage sector, while the new jobs are leadership positions."

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