September, 2005 Newsletter

Dear Email Friends,

For those of you who are new to the world of computers we would like to point out that the words in blue in the text and at the bottom of this page are links. You might want to try clicking on them. It's fun. If you click on teaching material, for example, you will come to a page where the plays of the season are listed. Then just click on THE FOURPOSTER and the teaching material for this production will pop up like magic.

-TWELFTH NIGHT by William Shakespeare-

We produced TWELFTH NIGHT in 2001. Next season (2006-2007) we would like to produce ROMEO AND JULIET, and we will if we find financial assistance. We would like to treat you to five plays (instead of the usual four) next season. That will mean shorter runs (probably eight weeks) but more entertainment for you.

Recent Press Clippings
Hamburger Abendblatt, 09.09.05
Früher war bekanntlich alles besser. Da endete die Ehe nicht mit einer Blitz-scheidung, sondern man blieb zu--sammen, auch wenn von Liebe keine Spur mehr zu erkennen war. (In "The Fourposter von Jan de Hartog") Die Krisen und Versöhnungen spielen sich im Schlafzimmer ab, rund um das Himmel-bett. Von Hochzeitsnacht, Schwanger-schaft, Erziehungsfragen und Affäre bis hin zu Zweifeln an der Ehe . . . gewinnen beide Schauspieler durch ihr Engage- ment. Schluß-Erkenntnis: "Marriage was a good thing."

Alster Magazine, 09.09.05
Das "English Theatre" ist das einzige englischsprachige Theater in Nord- deutschland. 1976 von Robert Rumpf and Clifford Dean gegründet, bereitet es seinen Besuchern mit Klassikern, Thrillern, Komödien und modernen Inszenierungen so manchen vergnüg- ichen Theaterabend. Dabei arbeitet das Haus ausschließlich mit professionellen englischsprachigen Schauspielern und die liebevoll inszenierten Produktionen sind meist sehr unterhaltsam--selbst die eine oder andere fehlende Vokabel ist kein Problem, da die Aktionen auf der Bühne sprachliche Lücken oft stopfen.

Good news. You are now able to park underground behind the theatre (subject to charge) and take the elevator up to the theatre. You can leave your coats in the car and avoid the weather when it is bad. This we should not tell you because it means less income at the cloakroom, but this tip comes as one of the many benefits you enjoy by subscribing to our newsletter. You can use the money you save to buy some delicious wine gummies at the bar.

Have you missed recent newsletters? If so, all previous newsletters are acces-sible on our web server at If you receive this newsletter as text only, without pictures, please send an email to and tell us, so we can correct the delivery system. The newsletter without pictures is like an airplane without wings.

In Memoriam
Anne Lange was a strong person with incredible drive and determination. She fought cancer for over ten years, but we lost her in 1986. You would never have guessed she was seriously ill. Working hard to promote and sustain the theatre, gave her "strength and an important reason to live," she said. She believed that it prolonged her life. Anne did everything from the bookkeeping to cleaning the toilets. With her total dedication to the English Theatre, there was no job that she found menial. She was fascinated by everything that went on here and loved the business and physical labor as much as the art of the theatre. She refused to take money. The joy of contributing to the life of this institution was enough payment for her. How lucky we were to have Anne with us as long as we did!

30th Anniversary Season
(A time to review the last 30 years)

"most unkindest cut of all"
(Caesar to Brutus in Shakespeare's JULIUS CAESER)

On the occasion of our 30th Anniversary Season, the Kulturbehörde (Ministry of Culture), ironically, has cut the subsidies of all private theatres by about two per cent. Happy Anniversary! The Kultursenatorin, Prof. Dr. Karin von Welck, had to take this step because of the dreadful economic situation in Germany. We understand that. She is a kind woman and must do what must be done. This is not a criticism of her. The circumstances are unkind, not the Kultursenatorin.

Nevertheless, our yearly subsidy was already too low and this theatre will now receive even less financial support than usual. To make matters worse we have lost one of our sponsors, the British American Tobacco Company. They probably cannot afford to help us anymore now that all of you have stopped smoking.

We understand why the money we need to run this theatre is not available at present, but we also know that we cannot survive in the long run without it. Yes, you guessed it, we are asking you for help. Perhaps “begging” would be a better word. We rarely beg for money. It seems a little undignified, don't you think? But we have no choice if we want to continue to produce quality plays with professionals. Yes, here it comes: If you could transfer even a modest amount of your hard earned money to the theatre we can stick around for a while longer. It would also help if you would purchase gift vouchers for friends. That would produce income and, perhaps, introduce someone new to the theatre. Please donate what you can. Whatever the amount, it will be tax deductible and you will receive a Spendenbescheinung for the Finanzamt.

You can find out about the benefits of sponsorship here: Sponsoring Package. Sponsoring is a two-way street. A sponsor helps the theatre, but the theatre does a lot for the sponsor as well. If you or someone you know might be interested, please either forward this newsletter to them or print out the Sponsoring Package and pass it along. “People power” has always helped us through the rough patches and we are depending upon you again. Theatres and audiences are interdependent. They cannot exist without each other.

Please transfer your donation to:

The English Theatre of Hamburg e.V.
Vereinsbank, Hamburg
Konto Nr.: 39 13 928 BLZ: 200 300 00

Please include your name, address, the name of your firm (if applicable) and The English Theatre's booking number: # 400.

The photo above is of Janette Summerfield and Richard Burnip in the first scene of Jan de Hartog's THE FOURPOSTER (Photo by Hans-Jürgen Kock). Now considered a modern classic, the play features two characters, Agnes and Michael, and spans the years 1890 to 1925, as key moments of joy and crisis in their marriage are played out around their fourposter bed. The play is a humorous as well as moving tribute to the lasting quality of marriage, from the wedding night until 35 years later when Agnes and Michael move from their home to a small apartment.

Your Comments
Dear Fellow Newsletter Readers:
Don't you love the new colorful layout of the English Theatre's
newsletter? The pictures give a taste of whom you can expect to see on stage next. If you have already seen the current play, the photos remind you of the entertaining evening you had. I attended a showing of THE FOURPOSTER this week and thoroughly enjoyed the dialogue, the sets, and the period costumes.

At least once every school semester, my class and I visit the English Theatre for an evening of fun. In contrast to what I have experienced at other theaters around Hamburg , I really appreciate this theater's well-ventilated rooms and the relaxed, non-smoking atmosphere in the foyer during intermission. Our class reads the free description about the upcoming play (available online and per mail for English teachers) before our trip, and so we are well-prepared for listening to new dialects and the quick or witty conversations we hear on stage. All in all, it is a great teaching tool for culture, listening comprehension, idioms in usage, and new vocabulary. The actors and actresses speak clearly and the acoustics are good in the 160-seat theater. We come back every year, again and again. It is special for me as a native English speaker to have some cultural entertainment in my mother tongue
that I can look forward to four times a year!

The English Theater website has also been updated and includes helpful links to all the information I need for a class visit: where and how to order tickets and pick them up; prices online and offline, times and dates and even how to reach the theater by public transport! There are also flyers available about the season's four theatrical offerings, for people who like to plan ahead.

Why not plan a trip this Fall? You, your students, and the English Theater will all "profit" greatly!

Andrea Bornholdt
VHS and Institut für Sprachen

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