Social decline looks very differently throughout Europe: in its existential threat, in the personal sentiment or the socio-political suspension. The theater project examines how the relation between identity and work has been developing throughout three women generations in working-class families in Germany and Poland: Which correlation is there between the experience of social decline and political bearings, expectations as well as wishes? Does imminent or increasing poverty foster segregating behavior towards others and does it even amplify the tendency to let racism become a legitimate instrument within politics again? What does a change of perspective from and on two different countries reveal? Is mutual solidarity possible? A comparing view on Europe is meant to show how working biographies today liquefy, entire fields of work disappear, gender- and family models change. Over the course of a year werkgruppe2 will be interviewing women from three generations who live in two structurally weak industrial regions (Ruhr area and Lower Silesia) which are characterized by a high rate of unemployment and poverty. The theater production, based on conversation transcripts, is exclusively told from the perspective of women as until today it is mainly them who in their housekeeping first feel the indications of impoverishness. It also is them, who’s perspectives have been mainly untold till now. 

NEW: May 2021
Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen

NEW: June 2021
Teatr Polski w podziemiu

October 2021
Schauspiel Essen 




directing Julia Roesler
scenery and costume Léa Dietrich
Viva Schudt
composition Insa Rudolph
video Isabel Robson
dramaturgy Silke Merzhäuser, Vera Ring, Piotr Rudzki
concept and research werkgruppe2, Piotr Rudzki
text Silke Merzhäuser, Julia Roesler

with Janka Woźnicka, Marta Zieba, Beatrix Strobel, Janina Sachau, Esra Dalfidan (vocals), Katrin Mickiewicz (vocals)

A coproduction by werkgruppe2 with Schauspiel Essen, Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen and Teatr Polski – w podziemiu / Polski Theatre in the Underground


in German and Polish language with surtitles


In Cooperations with

Funded by