Posted by: chelseyh | December 17, 2007

Bertolt Brecht


Bertolt Brecht was born on Feburary 10th 1898 in Augsburg, Germany. As a child he did alot of poetry writing and published his first in 1914. Before serving in World War 1 as a medical student, he went to medical school. The famous “Druums in the Night” was written during the hardships he encountered during the war. This play was about a soldier who after returning hom from war finds that his fiancé is engaged to a guy who made his profits off of the war.He was married twice, first to Marianne Zoff. The second, Helene Weigel, he had two children, his daughter Barbra and son Stephan.

He went through many different parts of the theatre world, two of these departments were in writing and directing. However, his main interest was on directing. In the 1930’s when plays were banned in Germany he fleed to Finland to continue his work. Which was extremely controversial for the time, even to his fellow communists. One such controversial play was DIE MASSNAHME”, which was considered harsh by the communists. The lesson which should be learned from this play is “That the freedom of the individual must be suppressed today so that in the future mankind will be able to achieve freedom.”In his exile, he decided to obtain an American Visa to go to California where he hoped to become a Hollywood producer and screenwriter. However, he was extremely misunderstood in America by both the producers and the public.

 When he was able to return to Germany several years later, he founded the “Berliner Ensemble” theatre company, and by 1954 he had his very own theatre.In his last years Brecht wrote very few plays. These plays were not as well known as his previous works. The “Stalin Peace Prize” was awarded to him for his famous works in 1955. Unfortunatly in 1956 he died suddenly, of a heart attack.

  From “Drums of the Night”


Felner, M., & Orenstein, C. (2006). The World of Theatre. Boston, USA: Pearson Education

Fuegi, J. (1994). Brecht & Co.: Sex, Politics, and the making of the modern drama. New York, NY: Grove Press


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