Die Verlorenen Söhne (2010)
Theatre about whaling in Greenland
The production ‘Die verlorenen Söhne’ (The lost sons) tells the story of two young men who set out from the East Frisian Island Spiekeroog to hunt whales in Greenland in the 18th century. During a day of whaling in the Disko Bay, they were suddenly caught in the pack ice and their ship is crushed. Luckily however, the men are able to reach the safety of the coast and end up spending the winter with the Inuit. Only years later they return to their home island.
Research did not only take the theatre Das Letzte Kleinod to the East Frisian Islands but also to Greenland. Here director Jens-Erwin Siemssen and his group collected stories about whale hunting and life in the ice.
Central to the play is the confrontation of two cultures in the polar sea. Thus, the play’s German ensemble was joined by two Greenlandic actresses from the Silamiut Theatre. The premiere took place in a traditional storage shed in the dunes of Spiekeroog. Further performances were staged in the ports of Bremerhaven and Cuxhaven. Eventually the theatre travelled to Greenland. The guest performances concluded at the Katuaq Cultural Centre in Nuuk and a traditional whale oil shed on the island Uummannaq.
Book and direction: Jens-Erwin Siemssen/ Dramaturgy: Juliane Lenssen/ Actors: Wiebke Acton, Patrick Hellenbrand, Makka Kleist, Nikolas Knauf, Vivi Sørensen/ Assistant director: Sabrina Meyer, Melanie Pieper/ Technical staff: Frank Dohrmann, Thimo Kortmann/ Office: Claudia Stollenwerk
Photos: Melanie Pieper