Störtebeker’s Falconer

There is a moment during the Störtebeker Festspiele that always amazes the audience, when “Laran” the eagle flows low over their heads and lands on Störtebeker’s arm.  They gasp and those directly under the flight path can feel the rush of air has he silently glides over them.

Stiwi, the bird playing Laran, and his trainer Volker Walter, have been taking part in the play for the past 20 years and travel each year in May from their home in Bavaria to Rügen for the summer season, along with a host of other birds that he trains with his wife.

Last year I was lucky enough to be invited to visit them and see their birds of prey first hand.

The Adlershow at the Störtebeker Theatre in Ralswiek [Read more…]

Klaus Störtebeker is “God’s Friend”

In the year 1393 Denmark was at war with the north German state of “Mecklenburg”. Mecklenburg’s King had been captured and both countries were fighting for control of Sweden. Stockholm was under siege by the Danes, and Mecklenburg was more than happy to accept help from anyone willing to join them.

This part of Scandinavian history provides the backdrop to this years play at the Störtebeker Festspiele on the Island of Rügen.

The story picks up from where it left off last year, except that several figures have been removed or replaced due to their corrupt involvement in the building of the church in Wismar which remains on the right-hand side of the stage.

Goedeke Michels (Andreas Euler) and Klaus Störtebeker (Bastian Semm) arrive as the Danes are attacking Stockholm

Goedeke Michels (Andreas Euler) and Klaus Störtebeker (Bastian Semm) arrive as the Danes are attacking Stockholm

The left-hand side represents Stockholm, with the opening scene seeing one of many attacks by Queen Margrethe of Denmark against the garrison. She may not be successful, but it gives the audience a taste of the pyrotechnics and stunts to come! [Read more…]

Störtebeker Festspiele 2013 – A new cycle with a new face

The Störtebeker Festspiele start their 2013 season this Saturday, and with the main figure Klaus Störtebeker losing his head at the end of last year’s production, this year sees a new actor – Bastian Semm – take over the role.

Taking on such a major role is surely not an easy task considering that it has only been played by two other actors in the past 20 years that the Festspiele have been going for, especially when one of them (Norbert Braun) is on the stage beside you playing Klaus Störtebeker’s father.  But Bastian is determined to make his mark and play his Klaus Störtebeker whilst keeping the elements that makes the character what it is.

Bastian Semm as Klaus Störtebeker

Bastian Semm as Klaus Störtebeker

But not just Klaus Störtebeker is being played by someone new, his friend Goedeke Michels also has a new appearance in the shape of Andreas Euler, again a role that the same actor had played for the past 10 years. [Read more…]

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