What is the City?

A series of debates on the future of the city in cooperation with the Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper

With Armen Avanessian, Marton Gergely, Jón Gnarr, Katrin Habenschaden, Eva Mair-Holmes, Veronica Kaup-Hasler, Barbara Mundel, Alex Rühle, Alexandra Föderl-Schmid and others.

What constitutes our city? In general, who does this city belong to? And what ought it to look like in 10 years’ time? When will the last family be gentrified out of the city centre? How many SUVs is too many for a single pavement? And how can a person still express their opinion when everyone continues to wear masks? Since the beginning of the pandemic, there have hardly been any places to meet. The Kammerspiele wants to open its doors to everyone in the city. To create space. To enable platforms. For all the most pressing questions.

We aim to launch this series on Sunday, 1 November with the following questions: How can one compensate for a one billion euro shortfall in business tax? Who must suffer for it, and for whom? How resilient is democracy? And when will things finally return to the way they never will be again?

11:00–12:30, Schauspielhaus:

Thinking about today already, tomorrow: what kind of city will we want to live in?

We know quite a lot about our future. In our approach we follow that of the philosopher Armen Avanessian. We use this perspective to examine the present and discuss the decision-making criteria that we are currently utilising in the coronavirus crisis, and that will also shape the course of our lives over the next 20 to 30 years. And we look closely at how other cities maintain room for manoeuvre in times of upheaval and a massive loss in revenue. Taking part in the discussion are: Armen Avanessian; Katrin Habenschaden, Deputy Mayor of the City of Munich; Kammerspiele Artistic Director Barbara Mundel; and, by Zoom, the former Mayor of Reykjavik, Jón Gnarr.

With: Armen Avanessian, Jón Gnarr, Barbara Mundel and Katrin Habenschaden. Moderation: Alex Rühle

13.00–15.00, Schauspielhaus:

Bye-bye Public Space: democracy dies in darkness

We take a look at the disappearance of public space: In the face of radical reorganisation and downsizing in newspapers and other media over the course of the coronavirus crisis, yet also in the face of foreseeable upheavals for the cultural scene, it is clear that the public space is suffering considerable damage. What does this mean for society, and what does it mean for a city? This is something that must be discussed. To being with, at 13:00 we talk about the state of newspapers and other media with journalist Harald Staun of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, broadcaster Caroline von Lowtzow (Zündfunk, BR) and the Hungarian journalist Márton Gergely, who has experienced from within what it’s like when a country in the middle of the EU has its freedom of expression gutted.

With: Márton Gergely, Caroline von Lowtzow and Harald Staun, Moderation: Alexandra Föderl-Schmid (Acting Editor-in-Chief of the Süddeutsche Zeitung)

At 14:00 we then look more closely at the consequences of the fragmentation of our cultural landscape. To this end we’ll be speaking with the City of Vienna’s adviser on cultural affairs, Veronica Kaup-Hasler (by Zoom) and the head of the Munich-based record label Trikont, Eva Mair-Holmes.

With: Veronica Kaup-Hasler, Eva Mair-Holmes and Ute Gröbel

Prices: €15 and €10

Tickets can be purchased in person at the theatre box office (Saturday, 11:00 to 19:00) or reserved by telephone: (089) 233 966 00 (Saturday, 11:00 to 19:00)