The Volksbühne Neubiberg-Ottobrunn has been committed to amateur drama since 1948. In the 75th year of its existence, “Odel obliges” is on the program at the Leiberheim in Waldperlach, a comedy in three acts by the successful author Cornelia Willinger. Above all, it is a very entertaining play, says theater director Ralf Hiltwein, who, like all those involved, is “sacrifically happy” to finally be back on stage, to experience the audience and to get the applause “that we theater people have been very fond of in recent years have missed”.
Hiltwein himself gives the role of Quirin Großschädel, a pig farmer and brewer with an incessant thirst for excellence. His lifelong dream of opening an exclusive castle hotel in neighboring Hackenstein Castle seems to be within reach, and he will soon be able to sign the contracts. However, his newly divorced wife Eva, in whose role Veronika Miller makes her debut at the Volksbühne, tries to open a hotel there herself.
This calls for revenge, and the sly, choleric pig farmer’s revenge takes on proportions that disturb the comfort of life for the hopelessly indebted Countess Odette von Hackenstein (Eva Botschen), who insists on noblesse. After attempts at appeasement and tough negotiations, in which even Pastor Hochholzer (Richard Zacharski) tries with God’s help to get the chaos under control, the Countess makes the pig farmer a tough offer.
Willinger’s comedy, which was released in 2018, has current references and offers a lot of wit – quite a challenge for the actors, including the new Veronika Miller. She comes from a theater family and gained her first stage experience at the Wendlstoana costume club in Thanning. She really enjoys working with the Volksbühne, which is well equipped and very open-minded, says the 27-year-old during rehearsals, which, like the performance, take place in the Leiberheim tavern in Munich-Waldperlach. Like the other actors, she is still struggling with the text and the wishes of director Gabi Popp.
“It is extremely difficult to get back into learning texts after the pandemic break,” explains Hiltwein paternally and looks at prompter Heidi Guggenberger, who is still working on when and how exactly she has to give which keywords to whom. Nevertheless, in the rehearsal it is already clearly noticeable how the actors grow more and more into their roles and bring the countless absurdities to the stage with a suitably serious expression. As a playful highlight, there is even a dance routine with Vroni Miller, who smiles seductively but doesn’t reveal who she’s going to share a cheeky dance with.
With all the joy of playing – according to Hiltwein, the Volksbühne is still looking for participants, young actors as well as old ones, and also some behind the scenes. But now he is hoping for many well-selling performances, because the Volksbühne, like many cultural event organizers, feels that visitors are not flocking to the theater as they were before the pandemic. Therefore, even in the anniversary year, there are initially only two productions per season, one in autumn and now in spring “Odel obliges”.
The play “Odel commits” has its premiere on Friday, March 10th, in the catered theater of the “Wirtshaus Leiberheim”, Nixenweg 9, in Munich, starting at 8 p.m. Further performances will follow on March 11, 17, 18, 24 and 25 at 8 p.m., and on March 12, 19 and 26 at 7 p.m. Tickets are available online at 10 euros www.volksbuehne-neubiberg-ottobrunn.de or at Modellbau Vordermaier, Ottostraße 26, in Ottobrunn and at the box office.