A young man is at his father’s deathbed. The father is on the brink – still there and already gone. It is impossible to talk to him anymore: perhaps he can still hear, but he no longer answers. The young man looks back at his own life and at the same time into his own future.
The figure of the father has always loomed large in western culture, sometimes as a stabilising, sometimes as an oppressive authority. But ever since the gender-based division of work in early industrial society took place, if not before, busy fathers have been one thing above all: absent – whether at work, at war or on the high seas.
But how are we, the offspring, affected by the imminent, very concrete absence brought about by death? What questions would we still have wanted to ask? What answers are lost forever? And how many secrets will the man who brought us up, and who is now a geriatric lying in bed, take to his grave?
Following in the footsteps of his award-winning, strong filmic portraits of modern Germany (including Kreuzweg which won the Silver Bear), Father is Dietrich Brüggemann’s first work for the theatre.
11 November, 2017, Box