★★★★ “Nina Hoss is magnetic in poignant political drama.” – The Guardian
★★★★ “Mesmerising… A searing political treatise… The book is brilliantly updated and made relevant to a British audience.” – Independent
★★★★★ “It’s rare to find a piece of theatre as acutely topical, deeply intelligent, and emotionally charged as Returning to Reims.” – What’s On Stage
★★★★★ “An intelligent piece of theatre that manages to explore complex themes whilst still having the self-awareness to keep the audience on board.” – Manchester Evening News
★★★★ “Intelligent and pertinent.” – The Stage
★★★★ “An engaging piece about serious political issues.” – Manchester Confidential
★★★★ “A highly watchable, lucid, and intriguing play.” – Upstaged Manchester
“[A] wittily deadpan production.” – The Telegraph
“Probing and intelligent.” – The Times
“Intellectually stimulating, visually rich and beautifully presented.” – Quiet Man Dave
“An incredibly welcome bit of intelligent thought on the subject of right-wing populism.” – Nachtkritik
“A shamelessly political piece of theatre that argues its case thoroughly.” – British Theatre Guide
Adapted from Didier Eribon’s bestselling memoir by Thomas Ostermeier, the Artistic Director of Berlin’s revered Schaubühne and one of world theatre’s most thrilling directors, Returning to Reims is an urgent reflection on the new world order.
When his father dies, Eribon returns to the working-class community he had long since left behind – and is forced to re-evaluate everything he thought he understood about his life, especially when he discovers his family have switched allegiance from Communism to the far-right Front National.
In Ostermeier’s typically multilayered production, set in a recording studio, an actress (Homeland’s Nina Hoss, a leading member of the Schaubühne ensemble) tapes a documentary voiceover based on Eribon’s memoir, and begins to reflect on her own background as the daughter of a union leader and activist. How has her personal history affected her place in the world? And as populism marches around the globe, does political activism still have a role to play? This world premiere may help us find the answer.
Commissioned by the Schaubühne Berlin and Manchester International Festival. Produced by the Schaubühne Berlin, Manchester International Festival, HOME, Manchester and Théâtre de la Ville.