Fischer Fritz no longer fishes fish (as the German tongue twister would have it). He had a stroke. This means that the tradition is disrupted; there is no longer a fisherman by the small river in the small village. Because Fritz’s son Franz only fishes as a hobby, he has moved to the big city. But who can be sure if there are even that many fish left.
And it is equally unsure what should happen to Fritz, given the state that he is in. It’s hard for him to talk and in protest, he has taken to silence. But he is clear in his thinking: “Nothing at all will go on”, Fritz thinks. “I’m a wreck.” But moving to a home is out of the question for him.
Not much later, Piotra and several other women take a bus from Poland to Germany. They are on their way to look after people as live-in carers, people like Fritz and all the others who have no one to care for them in the big cities and the small villages. “Uwaz˙aj na siebie. Tu na tym kon´cu s´wiata”, take care of yourself out here in sticks, they say when Piotra finally gets off the bus at Fritz’s cottage.
Raphaela Bardutzky tells the story of what happens when three so very different characters are thrown together as a temporary family: In “Fischer Fritz”, home meets away, the countryside meets the big city and different languages meet similar kinds of loneliness. And sometimes the lines run along unexpected paths.
Raphaela Bardutzky develops the story and the topics of “Fischer Fritz” in a very playful and theatrically open way: She calls her dramatis personae “Fri” and “Fra” and “P” – and connected to the main characters at their core, these three play all other characters too. And “Fischer Fritz” is not just a piece of spoken theatre, like its caption says, but also of language theatre. The play switches rapidly between the levels and the situations, the languages and dialects – and the characters are ready to keep up. Characters who at times can hear the others’ thoughts (or perhaps they know them anyway), who interrupt each other and who join together to tell a special story: a story of three journeys through life and their conditions in our present times.
“A sense of suspense pervades this play in memorable images, building up again and again in the seemingly inconspicuous”. This is a quote from the jury of Autor:innentheatertage (ATT)
who selected “Fischer Fritz” as one of the three world premieres that will take place at Deutsches Theater Berlin in the context of ATT and then at the cooperating theatres. Enrico Lübbe, artistic director of Schauspiel Leipzig, will direct the play as part of a team featuring Hugo Gretler (stage), Sabine Blickenstorfer (costumes) and the Leipzig-based jazz musician and sound designer Philipp Rumsch.
Raphaela Bardutzky studied dramaturgy, philosophy and literature at Bayerische Theaterakademie August Everding and LMU Munich. Together with Theresa Seraphin, she founded the “Netzwerk der Münchner Theatertexter*innen” in 2016. From 2018 to 2021, she taught writing for film and theatre at the Department of Theatre Studies at LMU Munich.