The drama programme includes three readings: Martina Gedeck and Claudia Michelsen read texts by Erika and Thomas Mann and by Friderike and Stefan Zweig at the Main University Auditorium on 29 July, entitled In aufrichtiger Wertschätzung! Excerpts from published texts and letters highlight the complex poetic and familial relationships between these two titans of narrative art as well as the different political stances they adopted towards the world of yesterday. The reading takes place in cooperation with the Paris Lodron University in Salzburg and the German Thomas Mann Society.

The Divine Comedy – a marathon reading of Dante Alighieri’s journey through the realms of the otherworld is presented by Verena Altenberger, André Jung, Ursina Lardi, Kathleen Morgeneyer, Jörg Ratjen, Devid Striesow und Angela Winkler on 15 August, in a version by Bettina Hering. In this defining work of European literature, Dante Alighieri takes us on a journey through hell (Inferno), purgatory (Purgatorio) and paradise (Paradiso) in a prologue and three books of 33 cantos each. A seminal poetic vision of the Middle Ages, Dante’s work has exerted a remarkable influence on all artistic disciplines right up to the present day. The marathon reading will last until approximately 1 am.

Margarita Broich reads from Gustave Flaubert’s novel Madame Bovary, one of the most important novels in literary history and a foundational work of French realism. The story of Emma Bovary, who fantasizes about a life away from stultifying provincial society, still captures our imagination. Adamant in her wish to be free, she racks up lovers, debts, lies and scandals – a hopeless plight that ultimately drives her to suicide. Depending on perspective, she is a culprit or a victim, an emancipatory pioneer or a sexual plaything.

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