Am Königsweg

[On the Royal Road]

All the characters in this play have been struck by their own form of blindness. Bedazzled by his own glory, the king has (not always legally) built immense wealth with real estate, golf courses and casinos. Now he finds himself ruling the most powerful country in the world. The population that elected him blindly trusts him to deliver it from the curses of unemployment and debt. Although his opponents rail - blindly themselves - against him, they fail to prevent his victory. Celebrating him as a redeemer, the populace hope their new king can redeem the country’s massive debts. A new power is resurgent, a Weltanschauung many around the world believed long gone, accompanied by hate, anger and violence. The king’s highway is revealed to be a momentous crossroads that may turn out to be a road to ruin.

Melting tragedy with the grotesque and contrasting high-brow discourse with vulgarity (without once mentioning the name Donald Trump), »Elfriede Jelinek’s giant canvas depicts a political and financial-capitalist complex that is rotten to the core ... Her reference spaces are antique myths and Shakespeare’s histories, populated by Lears and Creons and Richards and Oedipusses. Jelinek is concerned with truth, authenticity and clear-sightedness within a discourse in which everything is seemingly judged immediately to be true or false, or, expressed another way, arbitrary ... On the Royal Road is a very serious artistic answer to Trump precisely because it doesn’t connote self-certainty basking in its own sense of moral superiority.« (Süddeutsche Zeitung)

Elfriede Jelinek

Elfriede Jelinek

Elfriede Jelinek, who was born in 1946 and grew up in Vienna, now lives in Vienna and Munich. She has received numerous awards for her literary works, which include not only novels but also plays, poetry, essays, translations, radio plays, ...

Plays by Elfriede Jelinek






U: 28.10.2017 Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg (Regie: Falk Richter)