OPINION

June 27, 1952

BRECHT: (From the second part of a series by Alexis Solomos on the «Theatre National Populaire» by Jean Villar. Apart from a pre-war reference by Themistocles Athanasiadis-Novas to Bertolt Brecht, the following text by Solomos is, if not the first, then at least among the first written in Greece about the German poet.) «Bertolt Brecht was a pioneer of the epic drama genre in Germany between the wars. It was Max Reinhardt who staged Brecht’s first work, ‘Drums in the Night.’ Epic theater played an important role during that troubled time. It was the theater of major events, whether political, military or economic. (…) Brecht lived in exile in America while Hitler was in power. He returned to his homeland with a new play in his luggage – ‘Mother Courage’ (or ‘Mother Courage and Her Children’), the most important theatrical event in postwar Germany… a dramatic ballad that presents by means of 10 pictures, 10 years from the turbulent life of Anna Fierling, a 17th-century woman who follows the troops of Sweden, Germany and France selling coupons and wine from her wagon (…), indifferent to the flag that is flying or which side will win the war. (…) ‘Mother Courage’ is essentially an anti-war story, because (…) Anna Fierling is at heart (…) nothing more than an opportunist.»