Merlin oder Das wüste Land By Tankred Dorst with Ursula Ehler

New production
Johan Simons
Musical concept and musical director:

Christoph Homberger
Musical concept and arrangements:

Jan Czaijkowski
Stage design:
Johan Simons, Valentine Kempynck, Luc Goedertier, Freddy Schoonackers
BELGAT Valentine Kempynck mit Myriam Van Gucht
Mark Vandenesse
Will-Jan Pielage
Dramaturgy, text:

Koen Haagdorens
Anne Gehring, Wim Opbrouck, Judith Pol, Betty Schuurman, Louis Van Beek, Kristof Van Boven
Lenka Brazdilikova, Priske Dehandschutter, Christoph Homberger
Jan Czajkowski, Tom Deneckere, Tom Van der Schueren
Opening night:
27. September
7:30 pm
approx. 2 hours 40 minutes
29., 30. September, 2., 4., 5. October
7:30 pm
approx. 2 hours 40 minutes
2., 4. October
The introduction begins 45 minutes prior to the start of the event.
Category A
40 €
Category B
30 €
Category C
20 €

Discussions between the audience and the participants of the play will be held after the performance of September 29


The Early Middle Ages. Due to the collapse of the Roman Empire the global hierarchy is seriously disturbed. Through his Order of the Round Table King Artus manages to establish a protective barrier against threat caused by chaos and violence. This however would merely last a short period of time. Artus has a son, Mordred. He receives a prohecy that Mordred will induce the end of the Round Table. Artus’ try to drown his newborn child fails. Thenceforward, Mordred’s repressed anger is stronger than his striving for becoming a solid human being. When he discovers that Queen Ginevra has a secret love affair with Knight Lancelot he forces the king to convict her. Ginevra has a narrow escape from the funeral pyre being rescued by Lancelot. Artus grants her pardon but declares war on Lancelot. When Mordred tempts to assume power Artus returns and leads a devastating battle against his son’s standing army. A duel between father and son which takes both of their lifes ends the battle. Ginevra retreats into a monastery. When Lancelot finally returns from banishment he discovers the Queen’s dead body in her cell…
Merlin who is able to take a look into the future had prophecied the collapse of the Round Table. Nevertheless, he persuades Artus to found the Order of the Round Table: Merlin constructs a Utopia even though he is aware of its prospective failure. He confronts Artus with his far too rigid belief in major political systems and in his readiness to make sacrifices. With the character of Artus, Merlin holds the mirror up to mankind in order to bring people closer to themselves. According to his belief, a human being will be able to take decisions even at the sight of death.


We like to call to your attention our new service: A free bidirectional shuttle service operates from the central station Essen to the Maschinenhalle Zweckel in Gladbeck .

A co-production with NTGent.
With kind support of Verein der Freunde und Förderer der RuhrTriennale.