Revolution is raging in Haiti. After more than a hundred years of slavery, the subjugated populace is fighting for freedom. One night, young Gustav, a nobleman from Switzerland, knocks at the door of Toni, foster daughter of one of the revolutionary leaders, asking for protection while escaping from the revolutionary troops… Toni must decide – there’s no time for revolutionary romanticism.
In Die Verlobung in Santo Domingo (Betrothal in St. Domingo, 1811), Heinrich von Kleist’s novella published shortly after the French Revolution, the author recounts a dramatic love story against a backdrop of revolution, and describes two clear fronts: white versus black, good versus evil, order versus anarchy. Yet how will the story go when it isn’t clear who is friend or foe when it comes to enlightened values? In his new play, Necati Öziri questions supposedly unambiguous positions and interprets the story with a new level of opposition that invites us to engage in a modern-day discussion about violence and counterviolence.
Premiere: April 4th, 2019 at the Schauspielhaus Zürich
Photo: Esra Rotthoff