Courtesy of theater collective Raum+Zeit, you can now experience Thomas Mann’s 1912 novella “Der Tod in Venedig” (“Death in Venice”) in contemporary Berlin. With the audio from Theaterdiscounter playing through your headphones, you can walk through Corona-era Mitte accompanied by the thoughts of the book’s main character, the cholera-plagued artist Gustav von Aschenbach. The starting point for the audio walk is the Nikolaiviertel, a hidden array of cobbled streets behind Alexanderplatz. The nature of your trip with Aschenbach quickly becomes clear as the ageing and bad-tempered poet mocks the pseudo-historical, touristy surroundings you see around you. The story continues with original quotations and new set pieces as you head down the Spree past the Mühlendammschleuse and towards the Klosterkirche. Aschenbach’s fixation – the young Tadzio – belongs to the past but the poet’s disparaging judgments about the people and places around him are richly topical. For this reason alone it is worth following him for 30 minutes. (Text: Laura Storfner / Photos: Savannah van der Niet)
“Tod in Venedig” Audio Walk by Thomas Mann (in German), produced by Raum+Zeit
Starting point: St. George Monument, Propststr.9 by the Spree, 10178 Berlin–Mitte, map
Instructions and the route can be found here.
The audio walk is free, donations are welcome.