Hoffmann’s horror story in a production by theatrical legend Robert Wilson.
What happens to children who won’t go to bed? The wicked Sandman comes and throws sand into their eyes, so that they start bleeding from their heads. And what if you never quite could shake off that nightmare?
Robert Wilson directs The Sandman, a terrible tale from German Romanticism by E.T.A. Hoffman, often considered one of the very first horror story writers. The music is by British dramatic rock singer songwriter Anna Calvi and performed by the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus ensemble with the German star singer and actor Christian Friedel in the lead.
Friedel plays the role of Nathanael, who loses his father in a mystical explosion. The little boy is convinced that the tragic event must be related to the wicked Sandman. Even as an adult, Nathanael can never let the gruesome bedtime story go.
The Sandman is filled with enchanted eye glasses, living dolls and magic fire, and said to be one of Robert Wilson’s greatest productions. His subtle light compositions, precise movements and bold stage settings blur the line between reality and delusion in one of the 2019 Festival’s signature productions.
by E.T.A. Hoffmann, Robert Wilson and Anna Calvi
Robert Wilson direction, design, lighting | Anna Calvi music | Jacques Reynaud costume design | Jherek Bischoff musical arrangements | Ann-Christin Rommen co-direction | Annick Lavallée-Benny set design | Alexander Djurkov-Hotter assistant costume design | Scott Bolman assistant lighting design | Manu Halligan make up-design | Tomasz Jeziorski video | Janine Ortiz dramaturgy
Christian Friedel, Lou Strenger, Jonas Friedrich Leonhardi, Rainer Philippi, Rosa Enskat, Andreas Grothgar, Konstantin Lindhorst, Yi-An Chen, Alexej Lochmann, André Kaczmarczyk cast
Zuzana Leharová violin, keyboard | Radek Stawarz viola | Nathan Bontrager cello | Bernd Keul double bass | Annette Maye clarinet, bass clarinet | Achim Fink tuba, trombone | Roger Schaffrath guitar, mandolin | Tim Dudek drums, electronic | Frank Schulte sound design
Produced by Unlimited Performing Arts, Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus and Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen
Performed in German and English, with English titles.