Getürkt by Jörg Menke-Peitzmeyer (Germany)
Norwegian title: Den tyrkiske Løven
Norwegian translation by Beanca Halvorsen
18-year-old Musa receives a letter from the German Aliens Authority one day, informing him that he is not actually Lebanese, but Turkish and is thus required to leave the country, the Federal Republic of Germany, forthwith. Musa’s existence is called into question from two directions at once. Firstly, by his parents, who did not tell him that they used the turmoil of the Lebanese civil war in the eighties to leave their home country, the Turkish province of Mardin, which borders on Lebanon, without a passport, and to come to Germany as putative Lebanese, and thus political refugees. And secondly by international law, which, when defining a person’s identity, does not ask where someone was born or grew up.
Getürkt (which means «cheated» in German) concentrates on the existential devastation of a young person for whom, from one day to the next, nothing remains what it appears to be. In the transit rooms of deportation prisons, airports and emergency accommodation, it tells the story of someone who is suddenly no longer allowed to be what he was, and who does not want to be what he (supposedly) is.
The play opened in 2012 in a production by Theater BAAL novo, Theater beyond limits, Offenburg in a coproduction with the Theater Bonn. It was nominated for the German Young People’s Theatre Prize in 2012:
Jörg Menke-Peitzmeyer portrays the cynicism and madness of a story of deportation. Using powerful language, the author presents a strong, self-confident protagonist, portraying his counterparts from officialdom satirically, and comically exaggerating the absurdity of the officially ordered change of identity. He does not offer a solution, but only shows the characters’ situation and their reactions to it.
– Jury of the German Young People’s Theatre Prize 2012
Rights: Theaterverlag Hofmann-Paul
Rights for the Norwegian translation: Beanca Halvorsen, contact OIT for contact details
Getürkt will be performed as a rehearsed reading by Oslo International Theatre at Theater Café Festival Oslo 2014. The performance will be in Norwegian with English subtitles.
The play is presented in collaboration with Kinder- und jugendtheaterzentrum. The translation is sponsored by Goethe-Institut.
Read more about Jörg Menke-Peitzmeyer here.
With the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union.