The making of Berlin

Yves Degryse, 2022

The making of Berlin is a portrait of a city. It is built around the extraordinary story of Friedrich Mohr, a Berliner who was the Berliner Philharmoniker’s stage manager during WWII. The making of Berlin – with live horn music – offers an unfiltered look at BERLIN’s work process. But above all, it tells the story of one of the ‘unbrave’ who failed to stand up when fellow Jewish musicians and friends were expelled from the orchestra. The making of Berlin is the final part of the Holocene cycle, during which BERLIN made several portraits of cities over the past twenty years.

BERLIN helps Mohr to realize an as yet unfulfilled dream. At the end of WWII, the conductor of the Philharmonic decided to perform Siegfried’s Funeral March from Wagner’s Götterdämmerung one last time. The performance would be broadcast live on German state radio. Rehearsing with the entire orchestra in one location soon proved too dangerous due to ongoing bombing. So the conductor divided the orchestra into seven segments and had them rehearse in separate bunkers. Faltering (recording) technology threw a spanner in the works. Mohr’s ultimate wish is to perform the technical tour de force as initially planned seventy-five years after the date. The Götterdämmerung will be played from seven bunkers simultaneously and can be heard in its entirety on the radio. A daring feat for which BERLIN called on, among others, radio station Klara, the orchestra of Opera Ballet Vlaanderen and German actor Martin Wuttke (known from Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds).

Theatre- and film-maker Fien Leysen records the creation process for a behind-the-scenes documentary. Her footage eventually ends up in the performance as well. You gradually discover together with BERLIN that Mohr’s story is full of inaccuracies and that he seems to want to restore the irreparable. How far can you stretch the truth when you’re looking for atonement?

tour dates

03.06.24
theater akzent Vienna ATwiener festwochen
AT premiere
21.09.24
mattatoio Rome ITromaeuropa festival
IT premiere - 7 PM
22.09.24
mattatoio Rome ITromaeuropa festival
3 PM & 7 PM
10.10.24
ntgent schouwburg Gent BE
20 years of BERLIN
12.10.24
ntgent schouwburg Gent BE
20 years of BERLIN
05.12.24
cc muze Heusden-Zolder BE
13.12.24
30cc Leuven BE
04.01.25
theater rotterdam Rotterdam NL
24.01.25
stadsschouwburg Utrecht NL
11.02.25
cc diest Diest BE
21.02.25
het gasthuis Aarschot BE
27.02.25
cc de herbakker Eeklo BE
21.03.25
de singel Antwerp BE
22.03.25
de singel Antwerp BE
26.03.25
27.03.25
04.05.25
het nationale theater The Hague NL
06.06.25
cc sint-niklaas Sint-Niklaas BE
18.05.24
17.05.24
10.05.24
05.05.24
04.05.24
03.05.24
02.05.24
27.04.24
26.04.24
25.04.24
24.04.24
23.04.24
19.04.24
le maillon Strasbourg FR
18.04.24
le maillon Strasbourg FR
17.04.24
le maillon Strasbourg FR
12.04.24
schouwburg hengelo Hengelo NL
03.04.24
cc de brouckère Torhout BE
27.03.24
spot Groningen NL
23.03.24
cc mortsel Mortsel BE
15.03.24
cc palethe Pelt BE
09.03.24
natlab Eindhoven NL
ism parktheater
06.03.24
cc belgica Dendermonde BE
23.02.24
cc lokeren Lokeren BE
22.02.24
leietheater Deinze BE
17.02.24
het speelhuis Helmond NL
25.01.24
de meermin Waasmunster BE
13.01.24
cc brugge Bruges BE
in magdalenazaal
01.12.23
de brakke grond Amsterdam NL
30.11.23
de brakke grond Amsterdam NL
29.11.23
de brakke grond Amsterdam NL
17.11.23
rotondes Luxemburg LU
16.11.23
rotondes Luxemburg LU
LU premiere
10.11.23
cc zwaneberg Heist-op-den-Berg BE
21.10.23
de velinx Tongeren BE
17.10.23
cc mol Mol BE
14.10.23
07.10.23
06.10.23
archa theatre Praag CZctyri dny
CZ premiere
30.09.23
cc de werf Aalst BE
27.09.23
verkadefabriek Den Bosch NL
26.09.23
verkadefabriek Den Bosch NL
private performance
25.09.23
verkadefabriek Den Bosch NL
private performance
23.09.23
14.09.23
13.09.23
18.05.23
17.05.23
13.05.23
viernulvier Ghent BE
12.05.23
viernulvier Ghent BE
11.05.23
viernulvier Ghent BE
09.05.23
de grote post Ostend BE
13.04.23
de spil Roeselare BE
18.03.23
pact zollverein Essen DE
17.03.23
pact zollverein Essen DE
DE premiere
15.03.23
theater rotterdam Rotterdam NL
14.03.23
theater rotterdam Rotterdam NL
17.02.23
westrand Dilbeek BE
15.02.23
cc maasmechelen Maasmechelen BE
04.02.23
03.02.23
02.02.23
01.02.23
le centquatre-paris Paris FR
FR premiere
19.01.23
gc de kluize Oosterzele BE
15.11.22
cc de schakel Waregem BE
09.11.22
c o r s o Berchem BE
21.10.22
de warande Turnhout BE
02.10.22
01.10.22
20.09.22
c-mine cultuurcentrum Genk BE
schoolvoorstelling
20.09.22
c-mine cultuurcentrum Genk BE
avondvoorstelling
09.08.22
08.08.22
07.08.22
06.08.22
05.08.22
04.08.22
perron 3 Den Bosch NLtheaterfestival boulevard
NL premiere
15.05.22
de singel Antwerp BE
14.05.22
de singel Antwerp BE
13.05.22
de singel Antwerp BE
12.05.22
de singel Antwerp BE
premiere
see more

Credits

direction

Yves Degryse

with (on stage)

3 people - Yves Degryse / Fien Leysen / Sam Loncke (alternating), Geert De Vleesschauwer / Marjolein Demey / Koen Goossens / Bregt Janssens (alternating), Rozanne Descheemaeker / Matea Majic / Diechje Minne / Jonathan van der Beek (alternating)

with (on film)

Friedrich Mohr, Martin Wuttke, Stefan Lennert, Werner Buchholz, Alisa Tomina, Krijn Thijs, Chantal Pattyn, Symfonisch Orkest Opera Ballet Vlaanderen, Alejo Pérez, Yves Degryse, Caroline Große, Michael Becker, Claire Hoofwijk, Alejandro Urrutia, Marek Burák, Marvyn Pettina, Farnaz Emamverdi, team BERLIN: Jane Seynaeve, Eveline Martens, Jessica Ridderhof, Geert De Vleesschauwer, Sam Loncke, Manu Siebens, Kurt Lannoye, team Opera Ballet Vlaanderen: Jan Vandenhouwe, Lise Thomas, Eva Knapen, Christophe De Tremerie

video and video editing

Geert De Vleesschauwer, Fien Leysen, Yves Degryse

internship video editing

Maria Feenstra

drone shots

Yorick Leusink, Solon Lutz

behind the scenes footage

Fien Leysen

scenography

Manu Siebens

set construction

Manu Siebens, Ina Peeters, Rex Tee, Joris Festjens

set design and construction film

Jessica Ridderhof, Klaartje Vermeulen, Ruth Lodder, Ina Peeters

musical composition and mixing

Peter Van Laerhoven

live music (horn)

Rozanne Descheemaeker / Matea Majic / Diechje Minne / Jonathan van der Beek (alternating)

music film

Peter Van Laerhoven, Tim Coenen, Symfonisch Orkest Opera Ballet Vlaanderen olv Alejo Pérez

mixing orchestra

Maarten Buyl

sound design and mixing

Arnold Bastiaanse

sound recordings

Bas De Caluwé, Maarten Moesen, Bart Vandebril

translation subtitles

Dorien Beckers, Maria Feenstra, Annika Serong, Nadine Malfait, Isabelle Grynberg, Gegensatz Translation Collective, Fien Leysen

technical coordination

Manu Siebens, Geert De Vleesschauwer

technicians

Bregt Janssens, Jurgen Fonteijn

production management

Jessica Ridderhof

production support germany

Daniela Schwabe, Gordon Schirmer

research wagner

Clem Robyns, Piet De Volder

research internship

Annika Serong

photography

Koen Broos, Gordon Schirmer

trailer

Beeldstorm

business management

Kurt Lannoye, Tine Verhaert (from 2022 on)

technical coordination berlin

Marjolein Demey

day-to-day coordination and production assistant

Jane Seynaeve

office management

Maya Van der Brempt

distribution

Eveline Martens

communications

Sam Loncke

production

BERLIN

coproduction

DE SINGEL (Antwerp, BE), le CENTQUATRE-PARIS (FR), Opera Ballet Vlaanderen (BE), VIERNULVIER (Ghent, BE), C-TAKT (Limburg, BE), Theaterfestival Boulevard (Den Bosch, NL), Berliner Festspiele (DE)

with the support of

the Flemish Government, Sabam for Culture, Tax Shelter of the Belgian federal government via Flanders Tax Shelter

thanks to

Linnen Berlin, Xaveriuscollege, Zaal Billy, corso, Klara, Oderberger Hotel, Het nieuwstedelijk, De Munt - La Monnaie, Cornelius Puschke, Lisa Homburger, Jill Barnes, Aino El Sohl, Natasha Padabed, Max-Philip Aschenbrenner, Carena Schlewitt, Myriam De Clopper, Barbara Raes, Dirk Rochtus, Anneleen Hermans, Mark Reybrouck, Karen Vermeiren, Guido Spruyt, Hannes D'Hoine, Niels Kloet, Roel Gelderland, Mark Dedecker, Eric Mostert/VMOO, Cees Vossen

estimated duration

110 min.