German theater in the years between the two world wars, often considered part of the European “Expressionist” movement, was, in its most inventive aspects, a theater of opposition – a theater of protest against the values of the society that had prosecuted and lost World War One, against bourgeois smugness, and then against popular acceptance of the authoritarianism of National Socialism.
This program presents excerpts from German plays written in the 1920s that illustrate tensions that contributed to the rise of Nazism. The plays are "Gas" by George Kaiser (1875-1945), "Hoopla! Such is Life!" by Ernst Toller (1893-1939), and "The Private Life of the Master Race" by Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956). Performers include Sorrell Booke, Dorothea Duckworth, Robert Eckles, Dana Elcar, Irina Hurley, Pirie MacDonald, David Opatoshu, William Shatner and Sydney Walker.