Heinz-Uwe Haus has published a new book, titled Heinz-Uwe Haus and Theatre Making in Cyprus and Greece (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK; 405 pages; release date: Sept. 8, 2021). Co-edited by Daniel Meyer-Dinkgräfe and supported by Costas Hadjigeorghiou, the book presents a selection of the considerable amount of material written and published in relation to Haus’s productions of Brecht’s plays and Brechtian productions by other dramatists, especially ancient Greek drama, in Cyprus and Greece since his production of The Caucasian Chalk Circle marked the launch of the Cyprus National Theatre in 1975 after the country’s political turmoil culminating in the Turkish invasion.
Included is material written by Haus at the time for his cast, newspaper reviews and academic articles about the productions, conference contributions, essays of the director and reflections by cast members (both professional actors and university faculty) and designers (set, costume, light, music). Among the contributors are prominent voices of Greek, Cypriot and international criticism and culture. The book is illustrated with images of posters and drawings for the productions. The documents and the descriptions of all of Haus’ Cypriot and Greek productions demonstrate how his goal was to reinvigorate the theatre through a theatrical vocabulary not tied to language, but in context to the social conditions. Haus used all aspects of theatre to stage this: lighting, set, props, costumes and most importantly: action. One reviewer said the book “radiates the spirit of empathy, optimism, courage and energy.” Another reviewer wrote, “The value of the publication is its wealth of knowledge of theatre making. Though directing may be Haus’ most austere style of presenting his views, it is the concept that epitomizes his career. Haus did away with conventional methods of acting, staging, and performance. He replaced ‘realistic settings’ with ‘imagined space’ that often revealed the mechanics of the stage and created startling visual effects…. Haus’ focus became the actor’s ability to create through his imagination of social attitudes any situation to which the ’emotional memory’ of the audience will respond.”
Heinz-Uwe Haus is an internationally renowned director and is considered one of the world’s leading authorities on Bertolt Brecht. Since 1979, he has been Professor of Theatre at the University of Delaware, USA. Educated and trained in Germany at the Film Academy Potsdam-Babelsberg, as well as at the Humboldt-Universität in Berlin, he began his long artistic and academic career as Director at the Deutsches Theatre Berlin, and as founding member of the East German Directing Institute and Head of its Directing Department. In addition to his work in Germany, he has directed for the National Theatres of Greece, Cyprus, and Turkey, and worked with companies from Chile, Finland, Italy, South Korea, Canada, and the USA. His literary texts and poetry, as well as his work as painter (partly under his pseudonym Jean Bodin), have only recently been made known to a wider international audience. In 1989/90, Haus was a board member of the East German “Democratic Awakening” party (Demokratischer Aufbruch) and founder and representative of the “Praxis Group” in the USA. In 1992-1993, he worked as Director of the Educational Centre Schloss Wendgraeben of the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation.
Daniel Meyer-Dinkgräfe studied English and Philosophy at the Universität Düsseldorf, before obtaining his PhD from the University of London in 1994. From 1994 to 2007, he was Lecturer and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies at the University of Wales Aberystwyth, and, from 2007 to 2017, he served as Professor of Drama at the Lincoln School of Performing Arts of the University of Lincoln, UK. He is currently Artistic Director of piccolo teatro Haventheater Bremerhaven, Germany.
Andy Bargilly, Despina Bebedeli, William Browning, Andri Constantinou, Claudine Elncave, Thodoros Grammatas, Costas Hadjigeorgiou, Klitos Ioannides, Stelios Kafkarides, Petros Makaris, Neophytos Neophytou, Odile Popescu, Günther Rüther, Klaus M Schmidt, Guy Stern.