Himmelweg (Way to Heaven)

by Juan Mayorga

Athens Festival 2019, Piraeus 260.

At a concentration camp for Jewish people near Prague, a show of appearances is on

display. Berlin’s Nazi government chooses certain prisoners and forces them to fabricate an image of decent living conditions in order to appease the public opinion. Red Cross representatives, alarmed by the rumours about the conditions at the camp, pay a visit to Terezín, a ghetto (doubling as a camp) where everything seems to be ‘normal.’ Upon their return from the camp, they are to testify on the board and healthcare provided to the prisoners. Himmelweg, however, is far more than a mere re-enactment of historic facts.

The Holocaust remains a powerful memory; however, even more powerful are the allusions to contemporary reality. We are interested in the process of fabricating lies; conceiving a plan for deceiving others; the perfection of this mechanism; the ease or predilection of humanity to succumb to what is seemingly normal. How and why do we turn a blind eye on things? What forms and shapes do rebellion and submission take? Above all, what are people’s dreams and nightmares, both of those in power and of their respective victims?

Creative team:

Translation: Maria Chatziemmanouil

Direction: Elena Karakouli

Concept – Art direction: Eva Nathena

Set and costume design: Evelina Darzenta

Movement direction: Phaedra Soutou

Original music – Music design: Violet Louise

Video artist: Angelos Papadopoulos

Lighting design: Nikos Vlassopoulos

Foyer design and visuals: Alegia Papageorgiou

Make-up artist: Katerina Michaloutsou

Cast:

Nikos Psarras, Dimitris Papanikolaou, Thanasis Dimou, Ilias Andreou, Elli Papanikolaou, Melissanthi Regoukou

Video appearance by the actress Kitty Paitazoglou and the following volunteers:

Aris Alexopoulos, Sotiris Anastasiou, Stelios Barabas, Konstantinos Dimosthenou,

Odysseas Dimosthenous, Antonis Fanartzis, Nikos Flevaris, Giorgos Kokkonas, Ektoras Hofmann, Katerina Lazopoulou, Manos Lignos, Vangelis Lykoudis, Iro Oikonomopoulou, Panos Psarras, Kostas Siotas, Gavriil Tompalidis, Thodoris Tompalidis, Alexis Tsakalakos, Isabella Tsakalia, Aspa Tsaousaki, Pantelis Vallianos