Endstation fern von hier - An immersive urban movement
Text by Juliane Hendes based on true incidents in Düsseldorf between 1942 and 1945
1942, war is raging in Ukraine. The young Valentina K. has to watch helplessly as German troops march into her homeland in the most brutal way. Ukraine - like Poland before it - is occupied by German troops and the population is forced to work. At the age of just 17, Valentina K. is deported to Düsseldorf, which is completely foreign to her, to work for the Duewag company, which builds trams in Lierenfeld. Valentina's story is one of many. More than 20 million people were deported to German Reich territory between 1942 and 1945 to make up for the labour shortage caused by death and the war effort. They came from Holland, Poland, Belarus, Lithuania, Italy, France and Ukraine, among other countries, and kept a country going that brought misery and suffering to their home countries. In the midst of German society, right before the eyes of the German population, they had to perform forced labour.
In a fictional autobiographical journey, the theatre collective Pièrre.Vers captures the voice of Valentina K., representative of the millions of people affected. Endstation fern von hier' is an immersive theatre production that questions German politics of remembrance: How can it be that there are 20 million victims but basically no memory? Who is remembered and why? For which crimes is responsibility taken? And which fates remain forever unheard in the shadow of humanity's greatest crime?
A production by theatre collective Pièrre.Vers in co-production with asphalt Festival and Düsseldorf Festival!, supported by Fonds Darstellende Künste, the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of NRW, Kunststiftung NRW, Kulturamt Düsseldorf, Kunst- und Kulturstiftung der Stadtsparkasse Düsseldorf and the BürgerStiftung Düsseldorf in cooperation with Mahn- und Gedenkstätte Düsseldorf.
With the kind support of Rheinbahn AG.
With special thanks to the Düsseldorf City Archive and to Joachim Schröder
Worringer Str. 140