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The Stranger Comprehend

"I am mainly concerned about arriving": Dorothea Schroeder staged at Bellevue di Monaco a theaterst ü ck ü about escape stories-from the Second World War to today.

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The Stranger Comprehend

The café at Bellevue di Monaco is a friendly room with large windows in heart of Munich, corner Müller-und Cornelius. A few days ago it was opened, Fifties-interior is freshly renovated, a bright, charming ambiance. If you want to get to know refugees, instead of just talking about m, you can just drop by and try a Syrian lentil soup or couscous à la Senegal during lunch break and ask what he has always wanted to ask. Who are you? Where do you come from? What are you doing in Germany? What are you bringing?

Young refugees without parents live here, even a few families. Toger with Munich people who launched project, y help to renovate this cultural and meeting centre. Doroa Schroeder walks through rooms in back of hall, in a corner stands a ping-pong table, on shelf re are a few school books, on wall re is a bicycle, in hallway re are still buckets of color. The 43-year-old director says: It's great what people have put on ir feet in middle of city. "Because talking to each or is most important thing. How else do you understand stranger? "

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In Bellevue di Monaco Café, she will perform her new play "Cold home-what is called where?" on 20 November. She has been collecting biographies of refugees for weeks. She wants to bring her to stage, toger with professional actors. It will be about stories of loss, persecution, fear, but also about how to finally find a new home. These experiences share millions of people of all generations in Germany. "I'm all about arriving," says Doroa Schroeder.

That's why she's looking for people who've done it. Expelled from former eastern, Vietnamese boat people from Seventies, Russian Germans, people who fled nineties before Yugoslav war. Anyone who wants can still report. Some have already found it. There's an old lady from Transylvania. A war child, far fell on Eastern front, mor was abducted to Russia for forced labor.

In village of grandparents who raised m, Germans, Romanians, Czechs, Hungarians and "Gypsies" lived peacefully next to each or, remembering woman. As a late settler she came to Germany. There was generous help from German state, yet y often felt strange. In ir costumes, y keep old traditions up to now. Schroeder has recently seen how much support this can give, when she visited Crown Festival of seven citizens of Saxony in Augsburg. "This is a parallel world from which one hardly takes notice."

Can Mohamed also succeed in Afghanistan? One day he will also look back and say: I have lost my homeland, but I have taken a stand here, have a job as a mechanic and a family, and at home we sing Afghan songs? What must happen for people to be able to arrive?

As everyone interprets for mselves, Doroa Schroeder wants to explore with her play. "There are many regions in world where different cultures live toger quite easily, in which different languages are spoken and traditions are maintained," she says, alone in German-speaking countries. South Tyrol, for example, where she was just with her family, or trilingual Switzerland. "I love dialects," she says, laughing.

When she once came from Rhineland to Bavaria, she also felt strange. The strong dialect, May and lear trousers would have irritated m. "But n I found it great, we did not have something like that in North Rhine-Westphalia." Today she is married to an East German, while she was GDR as a teenager stranger than France.

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"In meantime I also love home of my husband"-this is how it can go if you first let yourself in on new one. In end it can be love. Perhaps Doroa Schroeder is also interested in listening to people and collecting stories. "I'm probably so much in past, because people often tell m half ir lives."

After graduation she completed several assistants at German stages and worked for a long time in a Croatian refugee camp, before she studied at Theatre Academy August Everding director. Since n she has been working freely, her husband is dramaturg. Ten years ago she performed a atre project with guest workers in her hometown of Mettmann near Düsseldorf. Two years ago she realized a piece with Sinti and Roma in east of Munich.


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