Thies Mynther & Veit Sprenger

This Machine Kills – Hidden Tales of the Revolutionary Piano


German /  English /  approx. 90 min

The piano: a black hole. Life comes from the darkness. Dirt, moss, ferns, trees. Wood. Body. Resonance. Black keys, black paint. Pianos have no natural enemies. A piano stands in the grass land, waiting for a mate. The act lasts for days. Creaking and rumbling. Hardly a sound. The image is kitschy. In China pianos are bred systematically. “Learn to play the piano!” Mao Zedong shouted to his party officials. He himself could play quite well but never tried.

“This Machine Kills” is a short world history from the perspective of the piano, a necromantic evocation of the unlimited apparatus. Starting from Veit Sprenger’s (Showcase Beat Le Mot) and Thies Mynther’s (Phantom/Ghost) fascination for the instrument and its rich traditions, a musical performance on the piano’s efficacy was developed along with the dramaturge Anja Quickert. In collaboration with Alex Murray-Leslie (Chicks On Speed), the filmmaker Sandra Trostel and the choir director and internet activist Ithea Koch, they enter into a bio-mechanical ritual, barely finding their way out of this labyrinth.

After the event on October 26 there will be an artist talk with Thies Mynther, Veit Sprenger, Anja Quickert and Stefanie Alisch.

Stefanie Alisch is a musicologist from Berlin. She graduated with a baseline survey on Kuduro, an electronical dance music from Angola. At the same time she worked as DJ, ran “living room“ bars, was active in the Berlin music(technological)industry and led radio and DJ workshops. Since October 2018 she works as a professor for theory and history of populat music at Humboldt University Berlin.


With: Veit Sprenger, Ithea Koch, Thies Mynther, Dasniya Sommer / Choir: Ilonda Jördis Jäkel, Annette Finke, Christoph Braun, Monika G Dorniak, Lily Martin, Yaneev Topyol / Composition, Text, Artistic Direction: Veit Sprenger, Thies Mynther / Concept, Dramaturgy: Anja Quickert / Set Design: Alexandra Murray-Leslie / Costumes: Sandra Fink / Choreography: Dasniya Sommer / Vocal Coaching: Ithea Koch / Video: Sandra Trostel / Construction: Jörg Fischer / Production Management: Johanna Thomas / Production Assistance: Viktorie Vášová / Lighting Design: Joscha Eckert / Rope Installation: Dasniya Sommer


  • Past
    Thu 25.10.2018, 19:00 / HAU3
    Fri 26.10.2018, 19:00 / HAU3
    Sat 27.10.2018, 19:00 / HAU3
    Sun 28.10.2018, 19:00 / HAU3


Production: Sprenger / Mynther / Quickert. Co-production: HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Mousontrum (Frankfurt a.M). Funded by: Cultural Capital Fund. With the support of Clouds Hill Recordings. Thanks to: Alexandra Vogt and her horses.


Tempelhofer Ufer 10, 10963 Berlin

HAU3 unfortunately is not barrier-free. Access to the theatre is via a stairwell (3rd floor). The use of a lift is possible with prior arrangement. If you need help, please contact our Ticketing & Service team at +49 (0)30 259004-27 or email us at Wheelchair users are also kindly requested to register their attendance at least one day before the performance.
Thank you for your understanding.

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