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Studs Terkel interviews Friedrich Luft in the home of Dr Erich Heller of Northwestern University

BROADCAST: 1968 | DURATION: 00:17:21


Friedrich Luft, Chief Drama Critic for Die Welt discusses German theater and Bertolt Brecht as well as new playwrights such as Peter Weiss. Unlike American theaters, Germany has over 200 theaters that are subsidized and each town of 50,000 has a theater. Just like the days of The People's Stage (which still exists) the grocer and cobbler of Germany enjoy the theater. They are as devoted to the theater as going to a museum or church. They are treated to 12 to 16 new or old plays from Sophocles to Sartre or Pinter. It is a feeling of belonging to the enlightened social class but it can be taken to seriously. Beyond discussing the structure and organization of the theater, Luft discusses Bertolt Brecht. He found Brecht to be a witty man and as long as they both put politics aside there discussions were memorable. Although Brecht never found success on Broadway he believed you must have amusement and elegance in producing. Luft also discusses the new factual plays created by artists such as Peter Weiss that dig into a moment and life of the German people. He speaks for German youth in that his plays are about bringing things to the open. Answering why it came about because people want to know. The tape ends at 17:16.