Laibach | Heiner Müller | Wir sind das Volk - ein Musical
The latest performative-musical production of the legendary band Laibach, made in cooperation with German artistic circles.
Laibach: Wir sind das Volk – ein Musical. After texts of Heiner Müller
Featuring Agnes Mann, Susanne Sachsse, Cveto Kobal, Sašo Vollmeier, the Vier Personen Quartet and the Stroj
Premiere: Hebbel am Ufer, 8th of February 2020, HAU1
Further Performances: 9th and 10th of February 2020
More about the premiere and performances in Berlin: HERE
Production: Internationale Heiner Müller Gesellschaft
Coproduction: HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Društvo za retroavantgardo
Funded by: Capital Cultural Fund
“As soon as I hear the word ‘Volk’, I get wary,” said Heiner Müller in 1990. “It isn’t my ‘Volk,’ my people. I understood very well, especially in the fall of last year, why Brecht always insisted on saying ‘population’ instead of ‘people.’ A slogan like ‘We are one population,’ of course, does not work. It doesn’t have any spark at all.”
Today once again we must ask the question who or what was this choir that empowered itself with the slogan “We are the people.” In times of global regression, the phantasm “Volk” is solidifying again into ethnic, cultural or ideological homogeneity. The music theatre project “Wir sind das Volk – a Musical” harmonizes what has long belonged together: the poet Heiner Müller and the legendary band Laibach – featuring Agnes Mann, Susanne Sachsse, Cveto Kobal, Sašo Vollmaier and others.
“The dialogue with the dead cannot stop until they hand over the future that has been buried with them.” – Welcome to the abyss!
Since its foundation in 1980, the collective Laibach Kunst (named after the German name of the Slovenian capital) has repeatedly (programmatically) dealt with German history, culture and ideology - especially with the prototypical expressions of fascist ideology and totalitarianism in the 20th century. In addition to overpaintings of European national anthems ("Volk", including the anti-hymn "Germania"), concept albums on Richard Wagner ("Volkswagner"), Johann Sebastian Bach ("Kunst der Fuge") or most recently Friedrich Nietzsche's "Zarathustra", their work refers to John Heartfield or conducts a musical dialogue with groups such as DAF, Kraftwerk and Rammstein. In the German theatre landscape, they arranged the stage music for directorial works by Wilfried Minks (1987), Sebastian Baumgarten (2011) or Milo Rau (2015). In 1993, the collective occupied the Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz and founded the transnational art state NSK there, named after the interdisciplinary platform New Slovenian Art, founded in 1984. Laibach’s artistic approach to the retro-avant-garde, the symbolic appropriation of forms of expressions of totalitarian ideologies, follows Heiner Müller's "Dialogue with the Dead": The unresolved traumas of the past can only be overcome by confronting the conflicts that triggered them.
* Slavoj Žižek introducing Laibach
* Laibach's retrospective in the Turbine Hall in Tate Modern
* New York Times about Laibach: HERE
Laibach: Wir sind das Volk – ein Musical
Concept: Anja Quickert, Internationale Heiner Müller Gesellschaft, Laibach
Music, composition & arrangement: Matevž Kolenc for Laibach
Performance: Laibach featuring Agnes Mann, Susanne Sachsse, Cveto Kobal, Sašo Vollmaier, Vier Personen Quartet, The Stroj
Special guest: Peter Mlakar
Additional arrangements: Alenja Pivko Kneževič, Simon Penšek, Sašo Vollmaier Scenography: Janina Audick, Helene Scheithe, Louis Schmitt
Video scenography: Komposter
Costume design: Petra Jurjec, Janina Audick
Production: Aminata Ölßner, Isa Schulz
Sound engineer: Matej Gobec
Lighting engineer: Tomaž Čubej
Video projections: Komposter & Tomislav Gangl
Monitor engineer: Marko Turel