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"Winter Solstice" by Roland Schimmelpfenig
City Garage at Bergamot
Santa Monica, CA
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"Winter Solstice" by Roland Schimmelpfenig
For a long time the far right hid in the shadows. Now it no longer needs to. Schimmelpfennings new play looks at the seductive re-emergance of fascism from the German perspectiveone that few can share with such unique dread.

Five people gather on Christmas Eve in a bourgeois, intellectual household. Albert, a writer, is engaged in a ferocious spat with his wife Bettina, a film-maker, over the arrival of her mother, Corinna. But it is Corinna who sparks the dramatic crisis by inviting a man she met on the train, Rudolph, to stay with the family. Rudolph is urbane, civilized, and politethe essence of cosmopolitan charm. He entertains everyone by playing Chopin and Bach on the piano, but when he reveals that he is a doctor with Paraguayan connections, we realize that he is the silken embodiment of a Nazi past Germany has long thought buried.  The US premiere of this transfixing new work from acclaimed German playwright Roland Schimmelpfenig powerfully demonstrates the unnerving logic of the new right and the seeming impotence of liberalism to combat it. Highly cinematic in style, naturalistic and surrealistic by turns, combining live cameras with onstage action, the play exerts the same hypnotic spell as its menacing visitoran insidiousness that makes him, in Schimmelpfennigs eyes, a lethal threat.

"The timing is perfect. The idea that we show hospitality to our destroyers is as old as drama itself.Schimmelpfennig, in portraying the failure of liberal intellectuals to confront the hideous legacy of the past, has written a potent play for today."

The Guardian

As choreographed by director Frederique Michel, it succeeds, adding not only a lot of dark humor but a mounting suspense.cool, acerbic humor.a familiar, chilling ideology. How is it that fascism, so easy to dismiss in theory, leaves its opponents so helpless when it knocks on the door, smiling and cultured and reasonable? Its a question weve all had plenty of opportunities recently to ask, and fail to answer, and it lends a gripping urgency to this well performed dark comedy.

Margaret Gray, LA Times

A subtle political allegory....Superb acting.Frederique Michels clockwork-like direction of Schimmelpfennigs tricky, provocative play and Charles Duncombes atmospheric stage design also deserve the highest praise possible."

Will Manus, Total Theatre

Topical, yet subtle. Intensely focused on an issue yet without preaching. On top of that to achieve the surface below which boils and dances currents of dangerous passionsdoubt, loneliness, love, hate, guilt, lust, horror, fear.A difficult, powerful theatrical achievement.I almost cannot emphasize enough how much the play depends on this cast of actors to make it workand how completely, under the direction of Frédérique Michel, they achieve it.

David MacDowell Blue, Night Tinted Glasses


City Garage at Bergamot (View)
2525 Michigan Ave.. Building T1
Santa Monica, CA 90404
United States



Kid Friendly: No
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!



Curtis Z.
Santa Monica, CA United States
Nov 25, 2018 10:15 AM
Bruce W.
Santa Monica, CA United States
Nov 24, 2018 4:20 PM
Bruce W.
Santa Monica, CA United States
Nov 24, 2018 4:20 PM
Name Withheld
Lexington, KY United States
Nov 24, 2018 10:50 AM
Name Withheld
Panorama City, CA United States
Nov 24, 2018 10:04 AM

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