Sivan Ben Yishai wins the Mülheim Drama Prize – Culture

The author Sivan Ben Yishai has won the renowned Mülheim Drama Prize for the second time. The jury honored her play “Nora or How to Compost the Manor House” late on Saturday evening. The play, which premiered at the Hanover Theater, was a “great indictment” written “briefly, elegantly and aptly,” praised the jury in its traditionally public session.

The playwright, who was born in Israel in 1978 and lives in Berlin, has taken the classic “Nora” by Henrik Ibsen and turned it on its head: The minor characters rebel, demand more text and more money: maids, parcel carriers and other marginal characters finally want their piece of the pie in the well-running entertainment machine.

“Genius nose for evil twists”

Ben Yishai demonstrated her “brilliant instinct for evil twists,” praised the jury members. The text was “exciting, unusual and uplifting on many levels.” The Mülheim Drama Prize is endowed with 15,000 euros and is considered one of the most important awards in the German theater landscape.

What is special about the Mülheim Theater Days is the focus on the pure text of the plays: the production on stage is initially ignored. Otherwise, some decisions would probably have been made differently when nominating the competition plays, the spokespersons of the committees had let it be known – because they were not always happy with the production.

The winners are decided at public jury meetings. This year, three of the five jury members voted for Sivan Ben Yishai, two for “Juices” by Ewe Benbenek. Ben Yishai had already received the Mülheim Drama Prize two years ago, for her play “Wounds are forever (Self-portrait as a national poet).”

The children’s play prize, also worth 15,000 euros, has already been awarded to the Viennese author Armela Madreiter for her play “südpol.windstill”. For children aged nine and over, it tells the story of Ida, who grows up in precarious circumstances with an alcoholic mother.

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