Der wahre Jakob – German Drama Company 2015


What now? More? One moment! Beautiful! But we’d better leave these on the balcony. They smell so strong! They’ll give me a head-ache. Yeah it’s a shame about all that money. Tomorrow we’re moving on then all these lovely flowers go in the bin. The letters too. That’s some huge applause at the Closing Night performance next door! Colossal! They’re going crazy! Miss Yvette will be moved to tears. I just have to say. At the end of the day. She is an absolute star. I’ve got the eye for it. I’ve been at the Variété for almost 20 years. Well… as a manager. Yes. She is very beautiful… When she prances about as ‘The Dragonfly’ That’s grace. That’s pizzazz! That was a secret! Don’t tell anyone about that! But… you’re right. The entire month not a day goes by that Miss Yvette doesn’t get at least three or four flower arrangements and on every single one there’s an invitation to dinner balanced on top Nope. She hasn’t accepted a single one. Yep. Just what I thought. That’s not very clever of her. After all, a little dinner invitation never hurt anyone! And every time that Miss Yvette ‘regretfully declines’, the gentlemen feel insulted and I have to hang around here. Every night! I haven’t even left the hotel room yet. For God’s sake! More flowers. I’ll ring you later. Yes! Bring ’em in! Can I help you..? Oh Madam! It’s you! Good evening Elise. The little Miss will be so happy! The entire month, every day, she’s hoped that you’d come but in the end we stopped believing you’d ever turn up! Unfortunately I don’t have the self-control to keep away! Well how is she then? I haven’t seen her for over a year. I’m so proud of my daughter for doing so well. Yeah the top guys are all fighting over her and after her success here in Berlin she signed a huge contract to go to America! Ah, so she’s really gonna go? Yep! In six week’s we’ll be swimmin’ in the ocean! Ah, so it goes! Then I’ll have no hope of seeing my daughter again! But a world tour will be good for Yvette. And those Americans have so much money to give! Ah. As her manager I’m sure you’ll be getting a huge bonus, no? That… that was never a consideration. Well if I’d known at the time how big she’d become I would never have gotten remarried! But five years ago when I met my current husband I was just a destitute widow! The child was only getting booked with small theatres so I had to count my lucky stars that such a wealthy man would ever consider taking me! If I’d told him at the time: I have a daughter at the Variété he would have ditched me in a second! So he has no idea you have a child? Of course he knows. but I told him she lives with relatives in Canada Yes, yes, my… simple little Elise I now have a wonderful home, a carefree life, but when I want to see my child, I have to be stealthy. That must be hard, as a mother. On the one hand you have a child, but on the other, you don’t. My man brought another daughter into the marriage. She lives with us in Pleißenbach. A lovely, charming little girl. But it’s still not the same as having my own with me. Oh God. Here comes Yvette! I’ve got an idea! Sneak into the bedroom and wait in there ’til I call you. Good, but don’t keep me waiting too long! Now, now my Lord don’t strain yourself! It was very friendly to carry my bags for me but- Ah, good evening Elise! Please relieve this lovely man of my jewellery box. No no no, I’ll hold onto it! It was very flattering of you to allow me to carry such expensive items. Oh they’re not so expensive and if you promise that this stays between us I’ll tell you a little secret… There’s not a single authentic item in there! That can’t be possible! I would be honoured if you would permit me to replace all these fakes with the real McCoy! No surely not! And all out of reverence for the ‘artiste’? Of course. And I may also be hoping to awaken some amicable feelings in you towards this old noble donor? My dear Count, I must regretfully decline I think I’d rather keep my fake jewellery and keep my real feelings towards somebody else. And now if you’d be so kind as to take your leave I have lots to do! Tomorrow I’m taking a little vacation. May I ask where you’re planning on holidaying? No. I’m not saying. I want to go there too! If I may be so bold, I’d love it if you would travel with me? I have a wonderful Rolls-Royce. Ah, so friendly of you, but still no. Perhaps you’ll think it over? Yes, yes, but not right now. See ya! Unbelievable Elise. Always the same story. The old fool. You really missed out this evening Elise. Such jubilation! I had to dance ‘The Dragonfly’ three times! The boss wouldn’t give me a moment’s rest! And you know what else? We can sign with him next year for two whole months! With doubled salary! Today really is a great day. And it’s not over yet… I also have a huge surprise for you. So tell me. Don’t be such a tease! Has something arrived for me? Yes… something has arrived… What? I’m not saying. Where is it then? In there! So bring it in! That I can do. Mama! You! It’s really you!! My child! Let me catch my breath, you’re squeezing me! Well I don’t even care! That’s your punishment for not visiting me for so long, you… you uncaring Mother! But honey, you know… -Of course I know! and it’s not your fault. The most important thing is that you’re here! and now sit with me and tell me everything! You’re looking good Mama. You’ve become even more beautiful with age. Come now Elise. Hasn’t Mama aged well? You’re much too beautiful for this old schmuck that you’ve married. Oh shush you cheeky thing! You don’t even know him. Doesn’t matter. I’m angry at him. Oh how I’d love to tell him what’s what. This old Mr Peter Struwe. What’s does he imagine of me? I’m one of the most well-known German dancers of our time and when I do dance at the Variété I only do it because I get the highest pay-rate. and you already know how much I love money. Yes I do, and of course you’re right. But my husband and I live in Pleißenbach an der Pleiße and there, people are a little bit… narrow-minded. And my man believes strongly in such things. He’s the city-Councillor and holds all sorts of honorary positions. He’s the chairman of the ‘Foundation for Fallen Women’ and second-Chairman of the ‘Chastity League’. Oh how impressive! And you, my lovely Mama, are the grandest… the most lovely woman in the world! Please Mama, don’t be cross with me, but perhaps you could have stood before my stern step-father and finally told him: “I’ve been lying to you, my daughter is NOT in Canada, she lives here in Germany, and I want her here by my side”. “She doesn’t belong to these ‘Fallen Women'” You don’t understand, child. Just a few weeks ago I tried to tell him the truth! When your picture appeared in the ‘Eleganten Bild’ magazine. Yeah, as ‘The Dragonfly’. Pretty, no? Oh of course you looked pretty. I just happened to come across it at the train-station. And I wanted to approach the subject very carefully, I thought my husband would like the picture too. So I told him, really subtly, at breakfast: “Look here Peter, isn’t this an enchanting woman, this dancer Yvette?” And what did he say? Oh, he was outraged about the shameful costume! and his old sister- the Privy-Councillor. She lodged a complaint with the train station that magazines are publishing such ‘obscene’ pictures. Oh, Holy Moly! How is that even possible? Oh Mama, that’s disappointed me so much. How on earth were you able to visit me then? Oh, it was fate, my dear! My husband had to come to Berlin to attend a Congress. What? He’s also here in Berlin? Yes, and I took this opportunity to sneak onto the train after he left. I just hope I don’t run into him anywhere… Oh please Mama. In a city with a million inhabitants!? Mr Ellison is downstairs and asks if you’ll receive him? Bully? Send him up! Who’s that then? My toughest suitor. A lovely, charming lad. But… he’s an American. Yeah, I know. And, he is utterly convinced I MUST become his wife! For the last two years he’s been following me around every evening as soon as the bell rings at the start of my act he appears in his theatre box and as soon as the performance is over he always appears without exception and asks if I’ll finally say “Yes”. Oh the poor old guy. Yeah, I feel sorry for him, good old ‘Bully’. Bully? Oh yes, don’t you remember my old English Bulldog? It was so jealous that it bit away every other dog that came near me. Bully does the exact same thing with my other suitors. Bully holds the watch. and makes sure that nobody gets too close to me. Yes? Come on in. May I introduce: Mr Ellison, my Mama. Ah! That’s your Mommer? It is an honour to finally meet you. Likewise Mr Bully. Oh, I do apologise, Mr..? Ah, don’t worry about it. These little nick-names is just a little thing that your ‘tart’ gave me when we met. Besides, it’s great that you’re actually here. Because I have a real question to ask your ‘tart’. That will really surprise both of you! “All by myself…” “I don’t wanna be, all by myself!” “Marry meeeeeeeeee!” Bully, Bully, Bully, you mightn’t believe me when I say this but I’d already guessed you’d ask me this question tonight! But did you know I’d ask it through song? No, actually I didn’t expect that. So, whadya say? Now, I really do like you, but… You’re saying “No”? Yes You’re saying “Yes”?! No!! So it is a “No”. You can congratulate me now. Why? Because my daughter turned you down? That I’ve now received 25… 25… Ah, you mean ‘Rejections’. Exactly! Exactly. That I’ve now received 25 ‘corpses’ from your daughter. “All by myself!” “I don’t wanna be…” “She said “Noooooo”” But wait! 25 is an anniversary! We should celebrate! What do you think about this: let’s go eat some fries and hamburgers? I dunno. What do you think Mama? Ah, comon! Step-mommer has to come too! Excuse me! She’ll say “Yes” eventually. I can wait. I’ve got time. She’ll have to say “Yes” eventually! Mmm, maybe. But perhaps I already have plans with somebody else? That wouldn’t be smart of you Miss Yvette. Cos I’m one hell of a Boxer. I’ll break all the bones in his body. And what will you do with a broken man? Not much actually. Alrighty then. Come pick us up in a little while. We’ll go and get changed. Come Mama. But child, I’m not prepared for this. I don’t have a single evening-dress with me. Then you can borrow one from me. Bye-bye Bully! Yeah- Bye-bye! That’s how you do it! Oh, I apologise, I didn’t know… What do you want?! You wanted Miss Yvette? Yes, you’ve guessed it. Who the hell are you? What makes you think you can just turn up here? I merely had the intention of giving the young lady these flowers. I’ll do that for you. Excuse me!! I’ll tell her that an old baboon showed up… How dare you..! and that he brought beautiful flowers with him. And when she asks: “Where are they then?” I’ll tell her I throwed the flowers out the window. “Threw”. Whatever. And the old baboon… I chooked him down the stairs! “Chucked!” And you wouldn’t dare! Oh, yes I would! There. They’re already gone. You must cease and desist! And now it’s your turn… You wouldn’t dare… Come at me bro. Unbelievable! ‘Douche-bag’ I heard people talking. Was somebody here? Yeah, a bony old cavalier with some flowers. Oh he came back again? Yeah, I chucked ’em out the window. What?! The cavalier!? No no no- just the flowers. Anyway- I’m off to grab some fries for this evening. See ya later. Incorrigible What? Who’s downstairs? One moment please… Yvette! Yvette! Yeah what? Come here, quickly! Do you know who’s downstairs? No idea. Your… step-father! Mr Peter Struwe is here?! Yeah! What does he want from you? It’s obvious! He’s discovered that Mama is here! But he has no idea that you’re her daughter? Yes, true, that is strange… Either way, I’ll have to receive him. Send him up. Yes. Send him up please. Thank you. But your mother is in the next room! Shouldn’t we tell her what’s going on? No! She’ll be distraught! On the contrary- go to her and tell her that she mustn’t disturb us. Tell her… I have a… an… important business meeting. My American manager is here! But my dear Yvette… I’M your manager. Yes, for the moment… But you can’t receive him dressed like that. Why not? You already heard how outraged he was about your picture. I guess you’re right. But I don’t have any dress that suits the tastes of Pleißenbach! Nobody does. I’ll just give you something from my wardrobe. I might have something simple enough. Oh yes, I believe that. God’s Greetings!! Well… there’s nobody here. Now, tell me Struwe… when are you gonna finally tell me what you’re up to? We come to Berlin for the Morality Congress as the delegates from Pleißenbach. And instead of going to the conference, you take me to the Variété?! Now, I really enjoyed myself… I must have misheard you..? You ‘enjoyed’ yourself? What? Didn’t you? Me?! I was outraged! Couldn’t you tell? No, on the contrary, for example, during that dance, by the beautiful Yvette, after every number you applauded like crazy! Me?! You always did that! No, no, I did THIS. I was slamming my fists together over my head! Oh, so that’s what that meant. But then why did you call out ‘Bravo’? It was all out of indignation! I wasn’t saying ‘Bravo! Bravo!’, like the rest of them, I was saying ‘Bravooo. Bravoooo.’ This is how far we’ve come as a society, that dancers have to prance about the stage like that! Now wait a minute… you didn’t look away! In fact, you didn’t take your opera glasses from your eyes once! I wanted to… convince myself… how far the shameful act would go. I’m sure you ascertained that quite quickly. Why did you want to talk to her in private? I want to give her a piece of my mind! I’ll lead her back onto the path of Virtue. Under my guidance, she’ll find the way of righteousness. I plan on bringing my skill set here, to Berlin! Here there’s lots going on! Here you can’t escape the city’s underbelly! Well then, I’m curious how Miss Yvette will take your attempts to convert her. I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow. What? You want to get rid of me? What I’m about to tell the young lady, there can be no witnesses. And also, one of us has to go to the conference! True, true. I’m the treasurer and keeper of the minutes. All important positions. Fine. I’ll go. But Struwe! you will really speak your mind, won’t you? You can count on it Böcklein. Good bye! This city is a slippery place! Make sure you don’t slip! No, no, I’ll get a Taxi anyway. Finally! I’ve gotten rid of that old barnacle. Now nobody could ever tell that I’m the Moralist from Pleißenbach. Now she can come… the sweet little dolly. If only I had some flowers for her. Thank Goodness, the watch-dog has left. But who’s this then? What’s he doing here? Looks to be a challenger..? Ah. He’s brought some flowers… WHAT DO YOU WANT HERE!? I merely had the intention… I know your intentions! Who the hell are you? I… I am the Count Rolls-Royce! Ah! I am… Baron Mercedes! …that’s also a good brand. I mean a good FAMILY! My dear underling… You should be ashamed! Wait, wait, wait, wait. Since when can you address me using the ‘Du’ form? I meant… ‘Sie’ should be ashamed! Aha. That’s better. I mean… that’s egregious! If you’d be so kind as to give me those flowers. Excuse me? Give me those flowers!! Now get out! You old… Nutcracker! So. Now I’ve got some flowers too! Please forgive me Sir for keeping you waiting. Oh, that’s no problem… Oh God she looks like somebody from the Salvation Army! May I ask what brings you here, Mr Struwe? Oh yes, I’ll get to that… Here! Your picture appeared in the ‘Eleganten Welt’ magazine! That’s you, right? Yes, yes, of course. And when I saw it… You were absolutely outraged. How’s that? Outraged over what? Well, over my revealing clothing! But unfortunately that’s just part of the job. But you see, off-stage I’m a completely different person. Yes. I can see that… I really live quite a reclusive, private life. I’m sure you can imagine, I get lots of visits from prospective suitors, but up til now, I have resolutely held them back! Oh what a disappointment… for these other men, I mean! You know what, I had a completely different image of you in my head. When one sees you up on stage… You saw me dancing?! Yep. This evening in Variété. YOU go to the Variété? Yes, of course! And I really enjoyed myself! And you weren’t outraged at all? No. Why should I have been outraged? Well, because of my costume. As ‘The Dragonfly’ for example, I’m not wearing much! Well that’s no problem. You know what? In Pleißenbach the dragonflies wear nothing at all! You know what, I’m speechless! I thought you would be totally different! What do you mean? you haven’t heard of me before? No, no… but when I came through that door and you were standing there I thought to myself That must be an outstanding gentleman A city-Councillor or something? Ah yes! That’s me indeed! A man of strict moral principles The Big Boss of a Morality Committee. I’m that too! That’s incredible! Yes. At home in Pleißenbach I’m a real Morality Rockstar! But when I’m sitting there on the train to Berlin traveling away from my stifling hometown then a real ‘joie de vivre’ awakens in me! And then when I sit there in the Variété. and the music swells and up on-stage a youthful, energetic woman like yourself is dancing, then a real devilish Playboy emerges in me and that’s when I told myself: “You must get to know HER”! So that’s why you’ve come? So you’re not angry with me? On the contrary! You have no idea how excited I am to make your acquaintance. I could burst out in laughter! Ah I see. You’re making fun of me… Absolutely not! I completely understand what you just told me. You know what you remind me of? There’s a little toy that children play with, a little wooden box, with a little devil hidden inside. He wants to escape from the dark box, but he can’t because he has… a lid over his head, that’s forcing him down! But you only have to push on a little button, and then… The lid flies open, and the devil springs out! I know it, I know it! And so you mean… I’m a little devil too? Exactly! You sit there in your dark little box, without air or sunlight oppressed by all this conservatism and pietism. That’s it. That’s it! With a plank over my head! But one only needs to press on your button and then he springs out: Der wahre Jakob! (The Real McCoy) Yes! And I’m so thankful you set me free! But you also have something weighing you down… Yep. This hat. Well, well… That’s a different story! And I’m usually not so buttoned up… Blimey! Now THAT’S something! You like? I could just eat you up! Oh, you’re so chivalrous! That’s not all! Allow me to present you with a few flowers..? Oh they’re beautiful! They must have been so expensive! Oh no, I came upon them quite cheaply. Well, regardless, thanks so much! I received lots of flowers today, but yours, my dear Mr Struwe, have brought me the most joy! Well then. Perhaps you could return the favour and do me a kindness? Sure, like what? Well, since we’re already all dressed up, how about we get to know the bottom of a bottle of champagne? Unfortunately I’ve already accepted another invitation to dinner. A good friend. Ah, you’ll have to cancel! Alrighty then, I’m sure Mama won’t mind. You’ve got a Mama too? I guess that’s hard to avoid. Most outstanding individuals have a mother! Well, just imagine, I haven’t seen her for an entire year and today she surprised me with a visit! Well, what luck! I’m already looking forward to the moment when you two meet each other! Well let’s just keep her away for tonight. We don’t want to surprise the old bird. She’s not so old. You might even like her. How old is she then? 43 years old. No! I’ve got one of those at home! And I was so looking forward to spending the evening with you ALONE! But Mr Struwe, I’ve never dined alone with a man before… but I simply can’t refuse you. So. We’re on? We’re on. Just let me put these lovely flowers in a vase, and I’ll just go and grab an evening coat. I’ll be right back. My Goodness. She is a sweet little thing. Ah, I’m glad you’re still here Sir. Here’s the old Nutcracker again! Man, I just threw you out! Yes, that was unforgivable! That’s already happened to me a few times today. Why do you keep coming back then? You took my flower bouquet from me. Ah well. That’s nothing. I’ll even reimburse you. Ah, really. What do I owe you? 3000 Mark. You’re having a laugh? 3000 Mark for a few flowers? In the arrangement was a little package with an expensive ring inside! You’re not joking? I was planning on giving it to Yvette, as a sign of my reverence. That’s some real cheek! Excuse me Sir! How dare you give the lady such expensive presents!? And how dare YOU steal my flowers away from me?! You WILL reimburse me IMMEDIATELY! 3000 Mark?! I don’t have that kind of money on me! Then that’s theft! Then I’ll turn you over to the police my dear ‘Baron Mercedes’! No please, don’t do anything! Just give me a moment! Then give me back my RING! You… you little limpet! Fine. Just leave now, and wait downstairs. I’ll wait quarter-of-an-hour not a minute longer! Then I’ll go to the police. And get rid of that table! Oh God, what a mess! Well, Mr Struwe, This is simply too much! You’ve really spoiled me. What do you mean?! First the beautiful flowers, and then when I go to put them in a vase… I discovered… That it still contained an expensive gift… This ring! Oh God, she’s found it. It’s just enchanting! I was so surprised! I had no idea there was something else hidden amongst the flowers! Me neither. It’s incredible how well you’ve matched my taste. Really? I’m not a huge fan of it. Why not? You picked it out yourself. Of course! But now that I see the ring like that, on your hand, it doesn’t really suit you. You don’t think so? You know what? I’ll exchange it. No. I think it’s lovely. Don’t you see how comfortably it fits? I wonder if I’ll fit so comfortably into my jail cell… And that’s another thing that’s wrong! What? I paid the jeweller extra for the LEFT hand not for the RIGHT hand. That’s silly! Well when it comes to such thing’s I’m just a bit silly. Give it here. Nooo. I’m keeping it. I’ve never accepted a jewellery piece from a man before, but for you, I’ll make a teeny tiny exception. What luck! And do you know what you’ll get in return? Yep. At least three months hard time… My ‘Dragonfly’ poster, signed by yours truly! Oh no, really? 3000 Mark. What a bargain. So, we’re really gonna keep the ring? Of course, why do you keep asking me? I just wanted to know… the old Nutcracker is waiting downstairs! I’ll be right back. So that’s the strict, moral man that Mama has been so terrified of? You just wait, Mr City-Councillor. You’re in for a shock. Mama, Elise, come out! What happened? What did he want? You’ll hear in a moment. So, has the American manager gone? It wasn’t my manager… do you wanna know who was just here? Who? Mr Peter Struwe! Oh I should have known. I’d have to be found out eventually! He must have acted really awful towards you? Oh no, I wouldn’t say that. What. Doesn’t he know? He knows nothing! What did he want from you? Why did he track you down? Ah. I might have guessed. He was so outraged over your picture in the ‘Eleganten Welt’. He came to remonstrate you? Yes, exactly right! But you just wait. We’ll become best friends in no time! And do you know where I’m spending my holidays? Where? In Pleißenbach an der Pleiße! Oh you must be going bonkers! But what about the American tour?! We have no time to talk about that now. He could come back any second! You’ve come at just the right moment! I’m so sorry, but you’ll have to take only Mama tonight. But I was so excited! And you? I’m going out with another man… Yep. With Mr Peter Struwe! I must be losing my mind. This ‘Struwelpeter’! I’ll break every bone in his ‘tits’! Be brave Bully! Otherwise I’ll have to leash you up! You’re going out with my husband? Where to? To the Morality Congress! Where else? So Bully. Take Mama’s arm. I’m BACK!! Nice chat. See you guys later! We’ll see each other again. It will be a great pleasure! Who was that then? A good friend. No, I meant the lady? Oh, that was my Mama. Very elegant! At home in Pleißenbach, I spend all my time trying to avoid an old lady just like that! Elise, quick get my fur! Should I also get the pearls? No, tonight I’m just wearing this ring! I foxed that old Nutcracker beautifully! He wanted to get my contact details. So I gave him Böcklein’s! Alright. I’m ready! Me too! Young lady… Mr City-Councillor… Now, that I’d be going out this evening with Mr Struwe, I would never have believed it were possible! Me neither! My lady, may I… I really AM a devilish Playboy!!! Do you need glasses, Anna? You missed a spot! Anna! You dare to dance, here, in this serious, strict, moral household? Oh gosh, Lotte! There’s no problem! Everyone’s out of town! Really? Well let’s take this opportunity! Let’s dance! ANNA! YOU DARE TO DANCE HERE! IN THIS SERIOUS STRICT MORAL HOUSEHOLD!! Oh god, my aunt… I forgot about her. I thought she’d already left. That old bag! Your aunt really gets on my nerves. She’s always grumbling about something. She sticks her nose everywhere, especially in my private business! Every time I bring her her breakfast, she gives me a lecture about the dangers of being an ‘unmarried woman’. I should apparently visit the Chastity Conference. Isn’t she also an unmarried woman? Yes! She’s an old spinster. Everyone in the house trembles around her. Papa and Mama, everyone gives her free reign to be a tyrant! Oh God, when she discovers why I’ve suddenly returned home… Well then little Miss. What’s going on with you? Why have you come home? Ah Anna, but you mustn’t tell on me! I’d never do that! They chucked me out… Out of the Cecilia Convent? Yeah, would you believe it? That’s so harsh! What did you do then? The Mother Superior… she caught me… Where? In the evening… outside… Well, that’s nothing! Yes… but… I wasn’t… alone. Little Miss! Anna, you have a sweetheart too! You must understand these things! Of course. You’ve got to believe me- I really do like him! And he likes me too! But those old nuns are like Bloodhounds! So we always had to meet secretly in the park. Yesterday evening, I slipped outside through my window. He climbed over the high park-wall. And just as we sank into each others arms and he kissed me… The old Mother Superior appeared before us! Ah, what rotten luck! What will your parents say? Oh gosh, especially Papa. I’m so nervous around him! He’s always so strict! And don’t forget your Aunt upstairs! OH I can’t even think about that right now! ANNA!!! WHERE ARE YOU HIDING!? She’s coming! What should I say? Ah, you’re still in here. Charlotte! You’re here! I’m here! Isn’t this a great surprise? Good Day, my dearest Aunt! How about you explain to me how is it that, in the middle of Semester, you suddenly arrive home? There must be a good reason? Of course there is… Umm… Umm… At the Convent there was an outbreak of the Measles! The Measles? Yeah! Would you believe it? That is very regrettable! Yeah, I was also very disappointed. I love being there. It’s such a lovely place. Oh, that I can believe! It’s a charming Residence. The wonderful park! Yes! That always brought me the most joy! Hopefully you’re doing everything to get yourself noticed by the Mother Superior? Yes of course! I’m already quite popular with her. Has my brother arrived home yet? No, Mr Struwe hasn’t returned yet. That’s curious… I think Papa went to a Congress in Berlin? Yes, but this Congress never took place! It reads here in the newspaper: “The Congress for the League of Customs and Morality, which yesterday had a meeting scheduled in a function room in Berlin was, under unjustifiable circumstances, disrupted by as yet unknown elements”. “As the President, Professor Zickendreher, started the meeting with a fiery opening-speech, a group of young people stormed the room and chucked a number of STINKBOMBS into the horrified crowd of attendees, who quickly fled the room”. Stinkbombs?! How crude… Poor old Papa… “As was later discovered, the attack was targeted at a political meeting taking place simultaneously, in a neighboring room. That’s such a shame! Just proves how easy it is to lose one’s way. By the way, where is your Step-Mother? Hasn’t she returned yet either? No, the lady of the house has gone to visit a sick aunt. What a nuisance! Today the presence of your parents would really be desired! I’m expecting a visit from ‘His Excellency’. Our esteemed Patron. I should like to… invite him to dinner! Well we can prepare something anyway. That would be very much desired… Good Bye, child. My Goodness Miss Lotte, you sure can swindle. Luckily the ‘Measles’ struck me at the right moment! Psst, Lotte! Fred? You?! For Goodness Sake, what are you doing here? What if somebody sees you? Don’t worry about it. I’ve been creeping around the house for half-an-hour. You just missed my Aunt by a hair! Oh that was the old hag? Yes! Luckily my parents are out of town. Well then… But if somebody comes? Don’t worry yourself little Miss. I’ll be waiting OUTSIDE! Ah, my lovely girl! You’re limping! I had a bad fall. Fall from what? On my way back over the park-wall! Oh no, you really hurt yourself? Yeah, thanks for asking. You poor thing! I’ll fix that with a kiss! You injured your arm as well? That’s awful! Come sit with me. My Goodness! Have you twisted and sprained everything? Oh, don’t even ask! Why have you even come here? Now listen here, that’s my duty and obligation! I can already imagine how dramatic your old folks will get once they find out about us. And they’ll all pounce on you! But I… I’ll hold my hand protectively in front of you. You poor boy! Lotte, it doesn’t matter. I’ll storm up to your parents! And I’ll tell them… I mean… I’ll tell them… “I love your daughter, and I ask for her hand in marriage”. Fred! You’re quite a character! Thank God! But what will your relatives think about this? My only relative is my Uncle, and I’ve already written him a long letter and told him EVERYTHING! And if he doesn’t give his blessing… Then we’ll go ahead with it anyway! Yes! Our love knows no bounds! Sure doesn’t! That means… I won’t be jumping over any more park-walls. Miss Lotte, your Papa is coming from the train station! Oh God, Fred! Do me a favour and quickly escape through the garden! He cannot see you! He has no idea about us!! Fine, I’ll go. But I’ll come back! Yes, yes, stay safe sweetheart! You too! Good Day Mr City-Councillor! God–!! –‘s Greetings Housemaid Anna! Lovely to have you back. When one returns from Berlin, this ‘City of Sin’, it’s always a pleasure, to breathe the air of Pleißenbach again! Where’s my wife? Oh, of course you don’t know, she left to visit a sick aunt. What? Yes, she left right after you did. What ‘aunt’ is this then? No idea. Any other news? Nope. Earlier this morning Mr Böcklein was here. He wanted to try you again this afternoon. Is my sister upstairs? No. I believe Madam Privy-Councillor has already gone. Thank God. She also asked after you. It’s fine. Ah, here’s Mr Böcklein again. Please, come on in. Ah, Good Day Böcklein. Hello, hello. Why do you look so worried? Are you alone..? Of course I am Böcklein. And… your sister? Is also gone. What’s got you sneaking around like this? I have something to tell you, something very unpleasant… Really, I wanted to ask a big favour of you..? A friendly favour. Could you possibly lend me… 3000 Mark? 3000 MARK?!?! Why on earth do you need so much money?! Well, I don’t know how to tell this to you… you mustn’t think poorly of me… Oh Böcklein. What have you done now? Struwe… my old friend… I stole money from the Treasury. Böcklein!! How could you?! Completely by accident, I succumbed to the charms of the Big City! On nooo How? Tell me everything. Two nights ago, you remember when we parted ways? Yes! Ummm… In the hotel..? In that dancer’s room? That’s it. And from there you were heading to the Congress? Yes. I was on my way there, I went down Friedichsstraße, and when I arrived at the Jägerstraße, everything was so brightly lit! And a huge group of men were going into a building. “Aha,” I thought to myself, “This must be it”. May I ask, did you know these men? No, but I got a good look at them, they were also small-town folk like me. And you didn’t think of perhaps asking anybody? Of course! There was a tall, strong man at the door, in a fine Uniform, with a sailor’s hat on his head. I asked him: “Excuse me, am I in the right place?” “I belong to the ‘Foundation for Fallen Women'” And then he told me: “Yeah, go on upstairs, everyone’s up there, the women too”. And so you went upstairs? Yes. Upstairs I walked up to a waiter, and I asked him to send me to President Zickendreher. And then he told me: “He’s not here tonight, but maybe he’ll come later on, go on inside”. And so you went inside? Yes. Struwe, I’ve gotta tell you, that was a real sight to see! Music was playing, and everyone was dancing! That was when I got the impression I wasn’t in the right place. I really should have immediately turned around, but I felt too embarrassed, cos everybody was looking at me, and grinning at me, so I ordered a bottle of wine. As soon as I sat at my table, a very beautiful woman sat next to me and said: “Hey honey, you’re not from round here?” “No,” I answered, “I’m from Pleißenbach”. Then she jumped up on her chair and yelled into the crowd: “EVERYBODY!” “Everybody!” “The Uncle from Pleißenbach has returned!” And then it went crazy! The musicians played a little fanfare, and suddenly a few dozen young women were surrounding me, and they all were yelling: “Long Live the Uncle from Pleißenbach!” How delightful! I had no idea, that we Pleißenbachers were so popular in Berlin! Suddenly a few glasses of champagne were on my table everyone was toasting me, so I couldn’t refuse! I can’t even describe what I saw! And this is why our Foundation sent you to Berlin? I thought it might be a good opportunity to lift these peoples’ morals! And I bet you did some heavy lifting? One glass after another? Sure, I’ve never seen such things in my entire life. How I suddenly ended up in a hospice is the real mystery to me… But Böcklein, that can’t have cost 3000 Mark? No, the money was for something entirely different. Listen to this: When I woke up yesterday with a splitting head-ache, there was a man standing before me, in servant’s clothes, and he said, he needed to get 3000 Mark from me, “For the brilliant Ring”. Yeah, sure, laugh away! But look at it from my perspective! I tried explaining to him: “You must be mistaken!” “I don’t know anything about that!” And he started screaming at me: “Are you Mr Heinrich Böcklein, YES or NO?!” “Yes, that’s me!” “Well then”, he said, “Then don’t cause any trouble,” “You know full-well that you sent a woman a ring”. “So give me the 3000 Mark, or I’m calling the police!” So you gave him the 3000 Mark from the Treasury? What should I have done?! Perhaps it’s possible, in my state, I might have actually sent a woman a ring? You know what Böcklein? You should be ashamed! Or perhaps the whole thing was just a scam, and the guy was tricking me. No, it was real. What do you mean? I… I mean… it’s really sad… that I have to experience such things from you! And I really shouldn’t be supporting your carelessness… but since it’s you… I’ll give you the money. Really? Struwe, you’re a real pal! I was so worried! and the hangover I had! I was in a real state the entire day yesterday! Didn’t you know something was up when you didn’t see me at the Congress? What?! You weren’t there either? What? YOU NEITHER?! Oh, God forbid. I had better stuff to do. And now… since you’ve shared your adventurous story with me, I’ll share my story too. What? Did you also have a bad experience in Berlin? On the contrary! The dancer, that we saw in Variété you remember. Yes, yes, the beautiful Yvette! You wanted to try to convert her. Exactly. But it went a little differently. She converted me! Oh no!! Man, I had absolutely no idea I’d spent my whole life in a little wooden box! But Struwe, you live in a mansion! Yep. I was all squashed into this little box. With a wooden lid over my head. What on earth do you mean? But Yvette pushed the right button, and then he finally popped out: ‘Der alte Isaak’! Isaak? Who’s this guy? Or is it ‘Jakob’? Whatever. One of those old guys from the Bible. I don’t understand. What are you trying to tell me? Oh man, I had absolutely no idea that I still have such luck with the ladies, in my age! You..? Yup! I was quite surprised! You… You and the dancer? Yes! You should have seen me! We went out for supper! No way..! Really?! It’s the truth! She’s completely crazy about me! You wanna know what she always calls me? “Honeybunch!” Very good! Honeybunch! And did she give you a little kiss? Nah. She didn’t want to give me one… But she promised next time we meet, I’ll be getting one! “And we’ll see each other again soon!” she told me “Sooner than you think, Honeybunch!” Oh God, here comes the Privy-Councillor! Oh no, my sister? She’ll want to know how the Congress went! Ah! Here are the esteemed delegates! Welcome, Mr Böcklein! Good Day, my dear brother. I’ve been eagerly awaiting your arrival home in order to finally receive an authentic report about the recent events in Berlin. So, how did it all play out? Oh, well it all went pretty much according to plan. In the beginning, you mean? Yes! Especially in the beginning! Old ‘whats-is-name’ stood up, the chairman… What’s his name again? Professor Zickendreher! So, he stood up, had a huge bell. About this big! Böcklein! You’re exaggerating! Ah true. Well, it was about this big then. Yes yes, please continue! Yes, please do Böcklein! It’s completely irrelevant how big the bell was! Let’s not get caught up in such frivolous information! So, my dear sister, The President called out a few times, until everyone heard in the huge room… So… just a tiiiny little bell..? That’s enough! And then… the Opening Speeches began? Ohhh, you want to hear THAT story? Unfortunately I wasn’t in the room during that bit. I had to nip outside. Well, I thought EVERYONE had to run outside? It must have been awful! The bit with the BOMBS! Oh yeah! It really was the bomb! Right Böcklein! I mean… the effects of the BOMBS! Oh yes! That was… what is she going on about?! Unbelievable! For a peaceful meeting, to be disrupted under such violent circumstances! So, you had left the room earlier then? Yeah, I’d had enough… But Böcklein here… He saw it all! Tell her Böcklein! What is there more to say? On that note, the conference was finished! Thank the Lord! Well, how do you know all of this? It says it here, in the newspaper! Regardless, I have a very important announcement to make. ‘His Excellency’ will honour our household with his visit. I’d like to invite him, in your name, to dine with us. Are you on board with this? Who is this guy? The oldest champion and saviour… of our virtuous endeavors. He’s coming to this town for the first time This really is a huge honour for our foundation! I’ll just run upstairs now… and prepare a speech for his imminent arrival. Good Bye! Good Bye… STINKBOMBS!? Lucky we weren’t there! I’ll head off… but what about the 3000 Mark? Oh Böcklein, you can take it with you now. But what if somebody notices? Good point! Wait outside in the garden I’ll bring the cash out to you. Oh Mr City-Councillor. There’s a young woman here to see you. See me? A young woman? What does she look like? Oh, she’s very pretty, and well dressed. Very chic. Hmm. What’s her name? She didn’t want to tell you. She wanted it to be a surprise. Well. Now I’m curious. Let the young lady in. Hey Honeybunch!! Hey Honeybunch!! Didn’t you believe me when I said we’d see each other again soon? No! Certainly not! Oh God! What if someone sees you here! Where are you running to Honeybunch? HONEYBUNCH!?!? If somebody hears that… I ask you… I beg you… please do me a favour and… ‘Sie’? Why are you addressing me in the ‘Sie’ form? We already decided in Berlin we’re close enough to use the ‘Du’ form! Yes! That was in BERLIN! But here..! How did you come up with this CRAZY idea… TO COME HERE!? Now, Honeybunch, listen here. You practically begged me to meet with you again really soon and so I decided to surprise you! And you’ve clearly succeeded… No wait a second… Don’t be grumpy with me but, I really was expecting a different reception. It’s like, you’re not even happy to see me… Of COURSE I’m happy! Can’t you tell? I thought you’d jump for joy. I will, I will!! Later, once you’re finally gone. Regardless, if you want to catch the next train, you’d better hurry! I wouldn’t even consider leaving right now! But you CANNOT stay here! Why not? I want to spend my holidays here. In Pleißenbach? Yes. In Pleißenbach. Where else? The whole… four weeks? Yes! All four weeks. Just for you. That’s it then… That’s it. Now you FINALLY seem happy. You have no idea! Struwe, weren’t you supposed to be getting… Oh my apologies! I didn’t know… Oh that’s fine. Isn’t that..? It can’t be… Yep! That’s her. The dancer..? And you let her come here?! She came on her own! Oh my goodness..! That’s not all! She wants to stay here! That won’t work! Did you hear that? My friend here backed me up! This won’t work! Ah! That’s your friend? Don’t you want to introduce me? My name is Böcklein. I’ve already had the pleasure of seeing you in the Variété. But of course, here, NOBODY can know about that! Why not? She just asked: “WHY NOT?” YOU DON’T. KNOW. PLEIßENBACH!! Exactly. It has always been my wish to visit this place. But up til now, it’s been impossible. But now I’ve been lucky enough to make your acquaintance now I think I’ll never leave! You were right… she’s completely crazy about you! I think this town is charming How about this, Mr Böcklein, how about leading me through the streets and showing me everything? No! No, unfortunately I don’t have the time… But my friend Honeybunch would be honoured to show you around. Hah! I’d rather wear swimming trunks into the Spinster’s Union. I’m finding you much less chivalrous, my dear. In Berlin you were much nicer to me… That’s enough of that Berlin nonsense! In Berlin, nobody knows me! But here… I’m the City-Councillor. I am a Pillar of Virtue and Morality! When people here find out that I know a dancer from Variété… I’ll have to emigrate! Honeybunch! You’re exaggerating! No! I have a wife! I have a child! Lucky they aren’t home to see this! “To hell with wife! To hell with child!” Don’t you quote poetry at ME! Oh, if only I hadn’t gone to Berlin… But Honeybunch… that would have been such a shame… then we would never have met… and you would never have received the kiss… that I still owe you. No! I don’t want one anymore. Nope! A promise is a promise! Here it comes! This is just lovely. I’ll be off now. See ya! Böcklein! Freeze! What was that? What? What, dear Sister? I’d like to know, what that was! What do you mean? What was WHAT? I beg your pardon? I walk into the room and discover you in an affectionate embrace with a strange woman. Yes, and? Is something wrong with that? Excuse me! Who is this young lady? Ahhh, you want to know who THIS is? Now, why don’t you try to guess? You can just tell her, my dearest Peter. “Du?” You address my brother in the “Du” form? Of course she does! I’d never call her ‘Sie’! Do you really have NO idea who this is..? No! Me neither… Oh god, you have to help me..! Ah, but I’m simply his daughter! That’s the cheekiest thing I’ve ever heard! You have ANOTHER daughter? I’ve never heard about that! Neither have I… I just got her now. Now it’s becoming clear. This is… Of course, this is… So you know who I am, Madam Privy-Councillor? Of course! You are… …his Step-daughter! Step! Daughter!! From Canada! You’ve guessed it! Oh, what a swindler! Why didn’t you just tell me immediately! So that kiss was completely harmless! Of course! Otherwise I would never have allowed it! That is the pinnacle of cheekiness! How about we sit down. Please. Thanks so much Madam Privy-Councillor. Why use such formalities? As relatives… How about you call me… “Auntie” Of course! You ARE my auntie! Could I also give you a little kiss? Why not… Have you seen much of our lovely town? Almost nothing! I went from the train station straight to my Hotel. Hotel? You can’t lodge alone in a Hotel, as a young lady! True. I have my Manager with me, but she’s weird. Well then. You simply must stay here with us! Isn’t that right, brother? Why else do we have that beautiful guest room? I offered her the exact same thing! But unfortunately, she has to rush off! No, my dearest Papa! You must have misunderstood me! After traveling all this way across the sea, she wouldn’t want to leave before seeing her mother! Her mother’s coming too? But father, my mother is ‘YOUR WIFE’! True! I completely forgot about that. Regardless, we will do everything in our power to make this place as comfortable as possible for you. Dearest Auntie, I’m so relieved to hear that. Now I can finally admit… I was actually quite nervous about meeting you! Really? Yes but after you’ve been so lovely and kind towards me now I feel completely at home! Have you already met your step-sister? No, not yet! Oh of course! She doesn’t know my Lotte. Such a shame that she’s not here. Of course she’s here. CHARLOTTE! They sent her home. There was an outbreak of the Measles in her convent. Oh God, everything is going against me! What’s going on? Oh, you’re back?! I had no idea! My lovely father. Now, child. Say ‘Good Day’ to this young lady here. Good Day! Who’s this then? Your step-sister! Oh really!? We’re sisters? And I hope we’ll become best friends! From the bottom of my heart, I already love you! Me too!! Oh God, she’s kissing the entire family! You’ve made a real mess! Oh. It’s almost time! I must… pick up ‘His Excellency’ from the hotel. We have more guests? Oh yes. An esteemed, extremely influential man who has shown such interest in our moral endeavors. His Excellency… will be our dinner guest! Don’t you stress, my dearest Aunt. It’s absolutely unforgivable for the lady of the house to be absent! But I’M here! Of course! SHE’S here! Yes. And as the eldest daughter in the house, I’ll represent the lady of the house and do the Honours. Well that satisfies me! And you, Charlotte, make sure the guest room is arranged for your sister. Of course! You’ll be dining with us, Mr Böcklein? Oh, Madam Privy-Councillor, if I may… OF COURSE YOU’RE COMING! Then I’d better rush home and get changed. Ladies. Oh, I’m just so happy! Why’s that then? So unexpectedly, the Heavens sent me the gift of a sister! Yep. What a great gift… Hopefully you’ll bring a bit of life into this old dump. You can count on it child! What’s wrong with you Honeybunch? Oh, I do apologize I can’t call my Papa ‘Honeybunch’! Tell me, how did you come up with this… CRAZY idea… TO POSE AS MY DAUGHTER?! Well, didn’t I get us out of that sticky situation? Yes, yes… but it could have gone much worse!! Fortunately my wife really DOES have a daughter from her first marriage! If only that daughter was a SON… we would have still been in deep trouble! The important thing is: up til now, everything’s gone perfectly! But once it becomes known… who you REALLY are?! All it would take is for someone to have seen you in Variété! Oh, but the brave Pleißenbachers have such STRONG MORALS! They’d never visit the Variété! But I met you there! No s**t Sherlock! Okay, no more tall tales. You’d better be leaving. I wouldn’t dream of it! I still have duties to perform here. What kind of duties. As your daughter! Now even she’s convinced she’s my daughter! You already heard. We’re receiving guests! Can’t you see that this will go catastrophically!? You could fool my little Lotte, she’s not the brightest… My sister too! She’s an… old cretin! But if my wife returns… Can you imagine that: IF MY WIFE RETURNS?!?! Papa! What is it? His Excellency is out front. I’ve laid out your stuff on your bed. And your things from the Hotel have arrived. Thanks sweetie. Then we’d better go get changed. Come sister. Good Bye my lovely, lovely, lovely Papa! Welcome, your Excellency. Thank you, thank you my dear Privy-Councillor. “Your dear…” We consider this a huge achievement that your Excellency has honoured our house with your visit. Yes, yes, of course. The best efforts of our foundation, which your Excellency protects and champions, have laid… DEEP roots into this town. And especially the house of my brother Struwe is known as the pinnacle of… Virtue and Morality! Does your Excellency enjoy listening to… music? I have recently… purchased a gramophone. Or do you find it… immoral? No, a little music never hurt anybody… APART from that awful noise one hears in Berlin clubs or Variétés. Just a little Mozart… so that we can speak more… comfortably. Yes, of course. So my dear Privy-Councillor, first I must admit… ACTUALLY A PRIVATE MATTER BRINGS ME HERE I’M EXPECTING MY NEPHEW! WHO?! MY NEPHEW!! WOULD YOU DO ME A FAVOUR AND CONTACT HIM TO LET HIM KNOW I’M HERE? HE STAYING IN THE ‘DEUTSCHEN HAUS’ WHERE?? ‘DEUTSCHEN HAUS!!’ I’LL SEND SOMEBODY IMMEDIATELY! IF I MAY… LEAVE YOUR EXCELLENCY… ALONE… FOR A MOMENT? Of course, of course. Oh God, I hope her brother is a bit more mature! Hmmm, who’s this then? AHH! THE NUTCRACKER!! Of course… now all of Yvette’s suitors have followed her here! Excuse me, Sir!! Man, what do you want from me?! You already got your 3000 Mark back! Yes, true…but..! Perhaps you think… you can just rock up here and cause trouble? Now I’ve had ENOUGH! ME TOO! Now you’d better leave! Excuse ME! OUT!! That could have been disastrous! Any second… his Excellency could be arriving! Your Excellency! You want to leave us already?! For Goodness’ sake! What has happened?! While you were gone, I was egregiously insulted! Impossible! By who?! By this Mr Böcklein! I already made his acquaintance in Berlin! I don’t understand… Now, he will have ME to answer to! I’m here! I haven’t come too late? In my fresh suit? Mr Böcklein! You have the NERVE… to come back… after everything that’s happened?!?! But Madam Privy-Councillor… I have no idea what you mean? Excuse me… THAT is Mr Böcklein? We’ll continue this later! Well who is THIS man? Your Excellency, may I introduce… my brother, City-Councillor Struwe. How unpleasing… I mean to say, very pleased to meet you! Oh God, and I just chucked him out! Oh, my apologies. Your Excellency. My young niece. Lovely to make your acquaintance. I just wanted to say, everything’s all set out. Well then, may I… Actually… I had another dinner companion in mind for you. Surely not yourself..? The eldest daughter of my sister-in-law. Really? The young lady has just returned from Canada. Ohhh, now it’s all over… He already knows her as a dancer! You’re very lovely, my dear and I really look forward to getting to know you. I’d like to welcome your Excellency to the house of my FATHER. She never breaks character! May I? With pleasure! Well then, let’s eat! Mr City-Councillor, Oh, my apologies ladies and gentlemen. What is it? She’s just arrived! Who? The lady of the house. Mama?! She won’t believe her eyes when she sees you! My sister-in-law has no idea what she’s about to discover! She sure doesn’t! She hasn’t seen her daughter for many years. You just watch- she won’t even recognize her anymore! Don’t be silly. You wanna bet? We’re about to find out. Here she comes! Oh God, she’s coming. She’s coming! What’s going on in here? Peter? My child! My lovely, lovely child!! Mother’s playing along too..? Of course Mama! Will do! Anna! Yes? You can serve the coffee now. If only I knew where Papa has left the cigars… Psst. Miss Lotte! What’s wrong? I have to tell you something! What? The postman was just here with a letter for the Privy-Councillor and do you know who sent it? No, surely not… Yes! From the Cecilia Convent! I saw it with my own eyes! Oh please God no! I wanted to take it with me but he wouldn’t give it to me! It’s a handwritten letter. I told him I can’t disturb the Privy-Councillor so he plans on coming back with it later! This is terrible! What do I do Anna? Shh! Papa’s coming! What are you up to? I’m looking for the cigars Papa. They’re in the bookcase. Struwe, why did you suddenly run off? I couldn’t take it in there anymore. My head is bursting! Anna! Yes? Could you prepare an ice-bag for me? I’m losing what’s left of my mind! Don’t be so nervous. You tell me this… after witnessing all THAT? Well, I have no idea what to think of all that. My wife returns home. One simply must assume… the gig must be up! But no..! What does my Mila do? She embraces this person and says: “MY LOVELY CHILD!” That simply doesn’t make sense! Yes, I was also gobsmacked… A mother must know what her own child looks like? But she hasn’t seen the child for years! Perhaps Yvette looks similar! Do you have a photo of the REAL daughter? Yes, we do in the bedroom! An old photo from her Benediction. Well then, let’s have a look! Well… perhaps you’re right… There really are some similarities here! I agree. There’s no other explanation! Your wife has also been swindled! This CANNOT continue! What will you do? I’ve no idea. Oh… My head is like the inside of a box of beetles! Here’s the ice-bag. Well, that’s certainly calmed my beetles down. Aha! THIS is where you’re hiding. What’s wrong with you then? Struwe doesn’t feel well. That’s no excuse! As the man of the house, one simply does not stand up and flee the dining room especially not when we have such an esteemed guest! His Excellency… even raised a toast. A toast to me? To your step-daughter! He’s thoroughly impressed by her. She’s so perfectly well behaved! I now have plans… to put her forward as new board member for the Chastity Conference! Board member? Oh… My beetles have started dancing again. Dearest sister, please don’t be mad, but I’d better lie down for a half-hour. Good Bye! What’s his problem? I think I’d rather stay with him. See ya! Dear Auntie, don’t you want to go into the parlor? There’s some wonderful coffee and cigars laid out. Thank you, child. But I avoid such poisons, on principle. Their only purpose, is to sap the health of our society! I completely agree, dear Auntie! And I’m continually surprised by how similar we are in these respects. Excuse me, Madam Privy-Councillor. The postman is here with a hand-written letter. Oh God! Then I beg your leave. What’s wrong with you then? Oh if only you knew… When she reads the letter… What? Do you know what’s inside? Of course. Now it’s all coming out! What is it? They’ve chucked me out of the Convent! Why did they do that? Because of Fred. Who’s this ‘Fred’? Such a lovely, kind boy. I’ll tell you everything! We really do adore each other, but the old nuns simply don’t understand! Oh, I can believe that! And recently, when we were secretly kissing in the park, completely harmless… they discovered us. That’s so inconsiderate! You shouldn’t disturb people like that! Right? And that’s nothing major… for an engaged couple. Engaged? You’ve become engaged? Of course! On the first day we met! We’ll get married too! But not for a couple years. Very brave. If only we had all this behind us! I’m getting so sick of this! Well, if I can help in any way… Oh yes! Please do! If you’re ever in my position, I’ll return the favour! That’s lovely of you to say. Charlotte! Do you know what’s in this letter? Yes, Auntie. I’m loathe to say this in front of your sister, but I have details of egregious misconduct! She just told me all about it. Well… You have the indecency… to let a young man KISS you! DIDN’T YOU THINK OF ME IN THIS MOMENT?! No, certainly not Auntie! I mean… didn’t you stop and think… that it was ME… who put your name forward for this exclusive Convent!? But Auntie, please, let me explain! ENOUGH! I only see one option! You’ll have to get married! Ah YES!! But not this stupid young boy! But a MATURE man! Who will return you, the lost sheep… who so flippantly deserted her herd… will in some way return you to the stables of the… the… The stables of conventional marriage? THAT’S IT! That will surely be a real wimp! As a matter of fact… the pharmacist Säuerling recently revealed to me… he wants to get remarried. Then he can marry YOU! He’s an old widower with three kids! No! I’d rather become an old SPINSTER! We’ll see what your parents have to say about this. I’ll be telling them everything, as soon as his Excellency is gone. Oh yes, my lady, you must believe me, for an old bachelor like myself, it’s such a pleasure to enjoy the harmonious feelings of a cozy household! Oh, your Excellency is too kind… I’m so pleased I have an excuse to stay a little longer: My nephew is expecting me. I hope my presence isn’t any inconvenience for you? I just have to speak with my sister-in-law for a moment..? Of course, of course. If YOU don’t mind keeping me company for a while, my dear? With pleasure. Then I beg your leave. Just a few moments. No rush. Take your time. CHARLOTTE! YOU COME TOO! Now I finally get the chance to speak to you in private… Shall we sit? Your Excellency must have been shocked when you discovered the dancer Yvette was the eldest daughter of this household? All the same, I mustn’t have looked very intelligent when I spotted you. You can say that again! I was so perplexed! I thought I knew my old Privy-Councillor! Of course, she has no idea that I work at the Variété. Ah, that makes sense. I couldn’t figure it all out! Well, I’ll have to ease her into it… So, got the gist, your Excellency? Be discreet! Of course. And if anyone asks you… I don’t know anything. Thank you. What a beautiful ring you have… I know right? May I ask what your sarcastic smile is supposed to mean? I seem to recall two days ago in Berlin you were so proud to only be wearing FAKE jewellery? True, but my step-father gave it to me. Yes, I know. How? I… I know how he came across it… I happened to be there too. Oh, life is just full of coincidences For example: that your Excellency also happened to show up in this town. I have my nephew to thank for that. I’ll have to dish out some punishment for that reckless rogue! The rascal wrote me a letter saying he scandalized a young girl from a good family! What? Yes. The family lives here, in town. The daughter goes to some Convent, somewhere. Sounds like a little hussy to me! The young boy climbed over the park wall in the evenings… moon light, kisses, kisses… Absolute animals! What do YOU think about the rascal? Chasing after girls… Scandalous! Where does he learn this stuff? From me… I mean NOT from me! Now, now. I’ve never climbed over a park wall, but I’ll still hold him on trial for it! I’ll have to marry him off! What a great idea! I already know a great girl for him! Really? Your Excellency has already met my young step-sister… Yes! A charming girl! Right? That would be… Excellent! The little one will surely curb his bad behaviour! There’s a young man outside. Ah, that must be him. Show him through. I’ll just go and prepare my sister. And you think she’ll be on board? I can’t promise anything… but I’ll do everything in my power! Hello Uncle! Good Day! Dear Uncle, you already know what happened… I told you everything in my letter. Indeed, EXCEPT for the name of the young girl. I… I thought… you knew? I know nothing! And I don’t WANT to know. But… you’re HERE! I have to assume… I am HERE to put a stop to your bad behaviour! YOU will marry. Ah, yes? Ah NO! Not who you THINK! But Uncle… It’s my duty as a cavalier… You will marry the girl I DECIDE for you! No! I can’t do that! YOU ARE MY ONLY NEPHEW AND HEIR!! EITHER YOU SUBMIT TO MY DEMANDS… Your Excellency, we have succeeded! Bravo! Here comes your bride… What..? I should marry… her? Exactly! Don’t argue with me! Boy ARE YOU INSANE?! Ah, I think I’m beginning to understand… the little one is… Of course! My Lotte! Oh, so you had no idea? Oh no, I bet you’re really cross with me now..? One simply CAN’T be cross with you! Uncle… May I ALSO give you a kiss? That would be greatly desired. I might as well get SOME pleasure out of this… And I promise: he’ll never climb over a park wall again! Well, that’s a relief! Let’s go tell Mama, Fred. See you! Do you see, our relationship is becoming closer and closer… Yes, as family members of course… Then I have the right to ask for a kiss! A familial kiss, of course… And you’ll get one too… …at their wedding! Then I’ll ensure they get married this evening! Oh, your Excellency! I’m so surprised! So excited for the little ones! And I’m excited for my nephew, who will recieve the best mother-in-law in the world! Oh THANK GOD! Finally I can talk to you ALONE! I have no idea what’s been going on while I was away. I did what you asked and let you travel here first. You wanted to break the news to my husband gently? Does he now know, that you’re my daughter? Nope. He doesn’t believe it. I’ve tried every possible method of letting him know… I though, when you came in… and we both hugged.. he’d FINALLY realise… but he can’t be convinced! He was in such a sorry state at the dinner table. Always giving me these sideways glances. Can’t be helped. He’ll have to hear it from myself! Hello Anna. This man is outside. Oh James Ellison. I forgot about him… Bully? What’s he doing here? He accompanied me on my journey here. Send him in. Listen, child. I feel so sorry for the guy. He’s so fond of you, and I’m convinced he could make you happy! I’m really fond of him too… Ah Bully! You really are persistent! You’ll never give up, will you? Well, maybe I will. From you, I’ve received… 25 flowers… flowers? “Rejections” Ah, right, “corpses”. You’ve already given me 15 ‘Baskets’. And nothing has ever come of this. So I’ve decided: if you don’t tell me right now, “Bully,” “I want to be your wife”. I’ll get on the next ship to America and we’ll never see each other again! Bully, I want to tell you something… We’d better have a chat about this. Just the two of us… Really? Come on Bully. Did you hear that? I think… I think so too… What’s that for? The mommer-in-law gets a kiss… and your husband gets one too! Oooh, just one more quick thing… I’ve been keeping it a secret, that my daughter works at the Variété. So, if anybody asks me… “I don’t know anything about that”? What to do about Peter… Ah! Mr Böcklein! Where are you coming from? From Struwe… He wants a fresh ice-bag. What’s wrong with him? Ah Mrs Struwe, your husband is really poorly. He’s sitting upstairs with a head full of beetles… Huh? He’s got a headache. And he’s trying to figure out how to bring something up with you… Bring up what? Well, it’s a delicate situation… but you’ll have to know the truth eventually… The woman you’re treating like your daughter… that’s not your daughter at all!! Yes! Yes she is! No! You’re mistaken! It’s… the dancer Yvette! My dear Mr Böcklein. As the oldest friend of my husband, I’ll admit something to you: The dancer Yvette… IS my daughter! Really?! Then I’ll have to… No no no no no. Let me tell him. He should hear it from me. Okay. But bring him around slowly… because if he finds out in his current state… I’ll have to prepare a fresh ice-bag regardless. It’s no use. I have to do everything myself. Where’s Böcklein gone off to? Ah. You’re here. Yes Peter. I’ve heard you’re not well? No, Mila. I’m in a miserable mood. Peter, I know what’s going on in your head. It’s something to do with my daughter. She still thinks it’s her daughter! Peter, just listen to me for a minute. No, no, listen to ME. I’ll explain EVERYTHING. As long as I still have my wits about me. My head is burning up like a furnace! Here’s the ice-bag. Thanks Anna. This’ll do me some good. So talk, Peter. Did you hear that? My head was so hot it hissed! So speak! Well, see here… How can I even approach this subject! Okay, let’s imagine you have a bird. Seems to me YOU have a bird (you’re crazy). Doesn’t matter. Let’s pretend we have a… shared bird. One day this ‘bird’ wants to be a mother, and lays a bunch of eggs. So they’re sitting there in her nest. But one day the bird has to go away, to visit a sick aunt… and when it comes back… somebody put a strange egg in its nest! What are you trying to say? It’s possible that the bird doesn’t even notice! After all, a mother can’t know ALL of her ‘eggs’! And that’s exactly what’s happened to you. Peter… now I’m really starting to doubt your sanity. No, no! I have complete clarity! To put it simply… this ‘person’ in our house is NOT your daughter! Yes, she is! NOOO! She cannot be!! I’ll prove it to you. I met her two days ago in Berlin. I know. I looked her up in the hotel. I know. And then she followed me home! I know. You know?! Yep! And I’m so pleased you’ve gotten along so well! She’s losing it. She’s losing it!! And you have no problem with this woman being here? On the contrary! I’d love it if she could stay forever! What? Think how great it would be, if all three of us lived together! You… Me… Her..! Here. You need this ice-bag more than me! What’s wrong with you! If I may ask… aren’t you at all jealous of this girl?! Of my daughter? NOOO!! IT’S NOT YOUR DAUGHTER! Goodness me. He’s a lost cause. Lovely to meet you Mr City-Rat. City-Councillor! Now he’s here too! Since this ‘woman’ arrived, the rest have all swarmed to follow her! WHAT DO YOU WANT? I’ve come to ask for your ‘tart’s hand in marriage. Which ‘daughter’? Miss Yvette? No!! SHE’S NOT MINE! I’m about to prove to you that she ISN’T! He knows this woman. and he’ll back me up, that she’s a dancer from the Variété. Ain’t that right? Variété?? Yvette never went to no ‘Dance Club’. Goodness me, now they’re making my poor husband crazy! Sorry for interrupting, my dear City-Councillor… YOUR EXCELLENCY! Thanks for coming! We met in Berlin, do you remember? That’s right. At your daughter’s place. Listen for a sec. Do you mind confirming for my wife here, that this ‘alleged’ daughter is a dancer from the Variété. No, no, that’s the first I’M hearing of this! Peter, let me explain everything to you… This is my last chance! Böcklein! Böcklein, you’re my oldest friend. My OLDEST friend! An outstanding individual! And you’re of sound body and mind. Old friend… Tell me… Is the person in this household a dancer from the Variété? Yes? Or no? Yes. And now the most important thing! Is this dancer my daughter? Don’t be angry at me… I can’t do anything about it… but… but… buuuut… she really is your daughter. Schnapps? What the hell is that supposed to mean Peter? GO AWAY! Oh no, his sanity has completely gone. I heard that! What’s going on? Where’s Papa? Papa? What are you doing? I prefer living with a lid over my head! What on earth is that supposed to mean, Peter? Papa… won’t you come out? No! I’m staying here! It’s more comfortable. Then allow me to introduce myself, Mr City-Councillor. Excuse me, young man, but I don’t recognise your voice? Oh, I’m your future son-in-law! WHAT!? Yes Papa, listen! We’ve become engaged! So, you want to marry my LOTTE! Well, congratulations. Uncle even gave us his blessing. Who..? Oh! The Nutcracker!! Indeed! And I’m so pleased I’ll finally get a kiss from your step-daughter Yvette. You don’t have any problem with that? No, but I just have one request… You mightn’t have consulted me about their engagement, you might also forget to invite me to the wedding, but please God, let me be there at their first child’s Christening? Very well, my dear City-Boxillor. City-Councillor! So, ladies! Gentlemen. I’ll be off now. My dear City-Councillor, hopefully we’ll never see each other again! Adieu! Good Bye my dear Nutcracker! Your Papa really is a jolly old fellow. And think: he’s YOU’RE Papa now… Oh. Should I leave now too? Yes, but I expect to you see you for supper? Sounds great! Remember to bring my flask. Hey, ‘Kleinbock’! Come on, I’m getting engaged to her. No, no, I’m afraid I’m a bit busy… Come on! Let’s have a drink! Excuse me… who ARE you? Doesn’t fuckin matter! Let’s have a drink! What’s up with you Peter? So, God knows, you’ve had your fun. Won’t you finally tell my wife the truth, about who you really are? Not necessary. She’s known me my entire life. Yvette. Are you really my step-daughter? Unfortunately, yes. Couldn’t you see that I was here sweating bullets? For hours! Yes. And I really enjoyed it! That was your punishment, the esteemed, moral City-Councillor Peter, for risking a little bit-on-the-side in Berlin! Does Mama know about that bit? Heaven Forbid! Oh child, you really are a great gal! Oh, Peter! Mila! This strong, healthy young girl, that I’ve been anguishing over, you’ve been depriving me of her for so long?! So you’re not angry with me? Hah! I could dance for joy! Dancing?! What would the Pleißenbachers say about that? Oh God. Speak of the devil… Oh no! Well, His Excellency is gone. Now it’s just us here… and I can finally express my rage! Your daughter Charlotte… has lied to us, in a shameful way! Really? That doesn’t surprise me. What do you mean? Because in this wretched old dump, we have nothing better to do, year-in, year-out, except to swindle each other non-stop! Because nobody has the courage to be who they really are. And who’s to blame? Your Morality-Bullshit! ExCUSE me! And you’re the pompous Bitch in charge! My brave, lovely wife Mila told me on the first day of our marriage, she revealed the truth: that her daughter… is a dancer!! No… Yes Mam! That ‘Dragonfly’ that you complained about… that’s her! I’m speechless! Please God let her stay that way! And there’s more… I never went to that BORING Congress! Unbelievable! Böcklein! Freeze! I thought… I didn’t want to disturb you… No, you’re not disturbing us. Things are about to get cosy. HE wasn’t there either! That’s scandalous! We had better stuff to do. We went to the Variété! We met a dancer! And we liked her so much… that after the show, I invited her out on the town! I gave her flowers. And a ring… for 3000 Mark! Such waste! I’ll have to put you under financial probation! Why? It didn’t cost ME anything… Böcklein paid for it! Madam Privy-Councillor… I have to say… I was NOT there! No, no he wasn’t. He was on Jägerstraße in a night club! Mr Böcklein!! Well, this is news to me… so you’ve been going out secretly with dancers? But Mama, at the time he knew who I was… No, no Mother, it’s true! I just wanted to act like a devilish Playboy for once. Well, it seems you’ve succeeded. You will give up your honorary posts, IMMEDIATELY! I don’t care about them! This whole town can shove it! I never thought you would disrespect me like this! Me neither! But I have HER to thank! She pressed the right button… and then he finally appeared! “Der wahre Jakob”! Playing ‘Bully’ – Dan Leckie Playing ‘Anna’ – Courtney Sole Playing ‘Elise’ – Steph Kitchen Playing ‘Lotte’ – Rachael Wiltshire Playing ‘Fred’ – Matthew Li Playing ‘Mila Struwe’ – Sophia Kwintkiewicz Playing ‘Heinrich Böcklein’ – Samuel MacKenzie Playing ‘die Geheimrätin’ – Celia Mcrae Playing ‘der Graf’ – Thomas Woodbridge Playing ‘Yvette’ – Dacia Benson Playing ‘Peter Struwe’ – Adam Dewar Lighting/Sound Ops – Johnson Zhuang and Holly Griffin Stage Manager – Marybeth Wilson Creative Producer – Courtney Eggleton Producer/Director – Callum Freeman

Tags:, ,

One Comment

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *