Landestheater Niederösterreich, St. Pölten / Nikolaus Habjan
Am Königsweg / On the royal road
Theatre piece by Elfriede Jelinek
“Elected is elected” – after the last American presidential election, the losers’ sense of shock is as deep as the newly elected king is high on his throne. Everyone is blind in this country: the people as well as the crowned man with tunnel vision. The name Trump is never mentioned. The references in current events to Greek tragedies, to the Old Testament, to Shakespeare and the Muppet Show all meld into one another.
Elfriede Jelinek, born in Mürzzuschlag / Austria in 1946, now belongs to the most important contemporary German-speaking authors. Her dramas include “Ein Sportstück” (“Sports play”, 1998), “Rechnitz (Der Würgeengel)” (“Rechnitz (The exterminating angel)”, 2008) and “Winterreise” (“Winter’s journey”, 2011), among others. In 2004, she was awarded the Nobel prize for literature. “Am Königsweg” (“On the royal road”) premiered at the Deutsche SchauSpielHaus Hamburg in 2017 and was directed by Falk Richter. The author had wanted Nikolaus Habjan as the director for the Austrian première. He created a breath-taking piece with puppets between carnival and neo-fascism, grotesque and world apocalypse.
Nikolaus Habjan, born in Graz in 1987, is a puppet builder, puppeteer, director and actor. He studied music theatre in Vienna and received the Nestroy Prize for his piece “F. Zawrel – erbbiologisch und sozial minderwertig” (“F. Zawrel – genetically and socially inferior”) in 2012. Without a doubt, he is one of the most versatile artists of his generation in Austria. He works at the Schauspielhaus Graz, Burgtheater Wien and at the Bayerische Staatsoper München, among others. In addition, he gives concerts as an artistic whistler. euro-scene Leipzig already invited him 2016 and 2018 with several pieces.