September sees Saxons and sorcery in German drama

By Victor Billot | Posted: Monday August 13, 2018

A modern adaptation of a traditional Saxon tale about a sorcerers apprentice is coming to the Dunedin stage in September.

The German language play is an annual event produced by students of the University of Otago German Department and is in its 64th year – a run unbroken apart from one year, where rumour has it the director fractured his leg.

University of Otago German student Cynthia Tian adapted the play from the novel Krabat, by Otfried Preussler.

“It is an adaptation of a traditional folktale from Saxony. The story follows the experiences of the orphan Krabat who is lured into becoming a sorceror’s apprentice only to realize the dangers of the evil powers he has associated with.”

The actors mostly consist of German students studying at 200-300 level, says Ms Tian.

It also involves students who speak German but don't study it at University, as well as members of Dunedin’s German-speaking community.

“This year we have a German mother and her son also taking part.”

Ms Tian says the play has modern relevance and is a straightforward and exciting tale. A high level of German is not required to understand the story, she says, and there will be a plot summary in English.

The production involves 17 people in total, including 2 co-directors, 13 actors, a costume designer/make up artist, and a lighting person.

Krabat will be performed at The Playhouse Theatre at Albany Street on Friday 7 September and Saturday 8 September. Doors open at 6.30pm and the play starts at 7pm. Admission is $10 adults and $5 for students and children.

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