Royal & Derngate Northampton and York Theatre Royal, in association with Oxford Playhouse, today announced that they will be staging the world premiere of Alone in Berlin, adapted for the stage by Alistair Beaton from Hans Fallada’s acclaimed novel. Directed by Royal & Derngate’s Artistic Director James Dacre, the production will open in Northampton in February before transferring to York and Oxford.
Set in 1940, the play is a gripping portrait of life in wartime Berlin and a vividly theatrical study of how paranoia can warp a society gripped by the fear of the night-time knock on the door. Based on true events, Alone in Berlin follows a quietly courageous couple who stand up to the brutal reality of the Nazi regime. With the smallest of acts, they defy Hitler’s rule – facing the gravest of consequences.
This timely story of the moral power of personal resistance follows Otto and Anna as they negotiate the insidious effects of absolute power on every aspect of daily life. When they decide to make a stand in their own unique way, the Gestapo launch a terrifying hunt for the perpetrators. Otto and Anna find themselves players in a deadly game of cat and mouse with the forces of the state – a game that will eventually lead them down through ever-narrowing circles of totalitarian hell.
Described as “the greatest book ever written about German resistance to the Nazis” by Primo Levi, book sales for Alone in Berlin entered the bestseller list again three years ago – almost unheard of for a 20thcentury literary classic – as its themes began to resonate across the world once more. Regularly adapted for stage productions across Europe, this will be the first time Fallada’s masterpiece has been seen on a British stage.
It has been translated from the German and adapted by the celebrated playwright and translator Alistair Beaton, whose numerous credits include Feelgood, Fracked!, Follow My Leader and The Trial of Tony Blair and adaptations of work by European literary giants such as Bertolt Brecht, Max Frisch and Nikolai Gogol amongst others.
Alone in Berlin is directed by James Dacre whose recent production of Our Lady of Kibeho enjoyed critical acclaim. Previous productions while at Royal & Derngate include King John (UK Theatre Renee Stepham Award) and The Herbal Bed (UK Theatre Award for Best Touring Production) and world premieres of Brave New World and The Hook.
Alone in Berlin is part of Royal & Derngate’s Made in Northampton season. For more information, visit the theatre’s website www.royalandderngate.co.uk.
The Made in Northampton season is sponsored locally by Michael Jones Jewellers.