To be or not to be? That isn’t a question, that’s the Queen’s dinner & a Night Out with William Shakespeare!

A Crown fit for a Queen, or any of the other Kings!
A Crown fit for a Queen, or any of the other Kings!

Last week was so exciting and was very, very British!

Why, you might ask?

Well, it was the Queen’s birthday as well as being the birth and death of William Shakespeare!

I know!!

Anyhoo!

I was invited to participate in a gala show and performance celebrating Her Majesty’s 90th Birthday.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY YOUR MAJESTY!

Royal Mail Stamps with the Queen's head!
Royal Mail Stamps with the Queen’s head!

The Queen was 90!

Wow!

I’ve always found her to be absolutely marvellous and looking equally amazing at 90, as she did at 19!

I remember the letter that she commanded her Lady-in-Waiting to send me, in which I nattered away about my family holiday at the most delicate age of 9, and I never forgot the reply!

I was so proud!

WHEN IS THE QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY?

The Queen is 90!
The Queen is 90!

The Queen celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday on 21 April, and her official birthday on (usually), the second Saturday in June!

The Queen usually spends her actual birthday privately, but the occasion is marked publicly by gun salutes in central London at midday, a 41 gun salute in Hyde Park, a 21 gun salute in Windsor Great Park, and a 62 gun salute at the Tower of London!

On her official birthday, Her Majesty is joined by other members of the Royal Family at the spectacular Trooping the Colour Parade, which moves between Buckingham Palace, The Mall, and Horseguards’ Parade, as well as a public appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

And in case you didn’t know, and of course, you did!

Queen Elizabeth has reigned longer than my namesake – Queen Victoria!
Queen Elizabeth has reigned longer than my namesake – Queen Victoria!

Queen Elizabeth II has ruled for longer than any other Monarch in British history becoming a much-loved, and respected figure, across the globe.

Her extraordinary reign has seen her travel more widely than any other monarch, and undertake many historic overseas visits. Not only is she known for her sense of duty and her devotion to a life of service, but she also carries out all of her duties against the backdrop of a full personal life, which has seen her raise four children, grandchildren, and now great-grandchildren, to the Royal Family.

Her Majesty has been, and continues to be, an important figurehead for the UK, the Commonwealth, and indeed, the world! At a time of enormous discord and strive, she remains unswayed, and ever solid and constant.

Her birthday celebration was a great day and made me feel proud to be British, and a part of the pomp and pageantry.

Long Live the Queen!

A DINNER FOR THE QUEEN!

The Queen's favorite dishes!
The Queen’s favorite dishes!

I was invited to honour the Queen and enjoy an exquisite gala evening at the Wintergarten Varieté theatre in Berlin.

The Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is a venue that was considered one of the stage entertainment places to be, between 1887 and 1943.

Today, the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is a large variety theatre and located in a different part of Berlin known as Schöneberg which is a stylish, leafy suburb with boulevards and open-air markets, just great for lovely Saturday morning walks at a local farmers’ market by day and Berlin’s popular centre of gay life and community, by night!

Going bonkers at Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn in Berlin! @ R.Pater
Going bonkers at Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn in Berlin!
@ R.Pater

I’ve written about shows at the Wintergarten Varieté theatre in the past. Here they are below:

On this occasion, it was a black tie affair with a distinct British flair so I invited another member of the British community to accompany me – The Tall Young Gentleman – otherwise known as my tween son!

We had a delightful evening hosted by one of my musical friends and fellow MancurianJack Woodhead – and the internationally acclaimed Australian artist – Sarah Bowden.

We were comfortably seated having arrived early and shown to our table, pretty much at the front of the stage, when the rest of the table (a group of 4) asked if we could swap seats as the rest of their party were on the other table!

Of course, we obliged.

A basket of warm bread and creamy-chived butter!
A basket of warm bread and creamy-chived butter!

We started with an apertif of prosecco (for me) and orange juice (for the tween), accompanied by a basket of warm bread and creamy-chived butter. And then a camera crew swooped in.

Imagine my annoyance when the TV reporter looked briefly around in some sort of confusion, and then quickly proceeded to interview the pleased but startled middle-aged man, who was seated in the chair that I had just left!

After about a minute, they switched off the camera light, took off the mics, and belted out the left hand stage door!

Me being thoughtful and looking as if I'm about to sing! © Pascale Scerbo Sarro
Me being thoughtful and looking as if I’m about to sing!
© Pascale Scerbo Sarro

Hmmmrff! Have I become one of those people..”but don’t you know who I am?!!!”

I hope not. Eeeek!

Jack took us through an artistic-culinary programme bursting with artists and performers, not only from the United Kingdom, but other Commonwealth nations too!

And then we had our starter.

A bowl of cream of apple cider soup with fresh chopped chives and butter croutons. Yum!
A bowl of cream of apple cider soup with fresh chopped chives and butter croutons.
Yum!

We had a bowl of cream of apple cider soup with fresh chopped chives and butter croutons. Yum!

After that, we had the 40-strong (!) choir – The Embassy Singers – from the British Embassy in Berlin who did a marvellous job of entertaining us.

Next, were more friends of ours, the hilarious comedy duo Carrington-Brown, who came along with their cello – Joe!

Somewhere along those lines thereafter, we had our main course.

We were served roast beef à la Wellington. Delicious but chewy!
We were served roast beef à la Wellington.
Delicious but chewy!

We were served roast beef à la Wellington with Cumberland sauce, sautéed green asparagus and mashed potatoes.

Everything was wonderful except for the roast beef. It would have been nice if it had been rare. It was however, well-done, but a bit chewy for my taste.

Ah well, “The Tall Young Gentleman” was pleased, as he had the most important job of polishing it off, while I had his cumberland sauce!

After dinner, the sexy-gracious English aerial artist Emily Kinch gave us a lovely acrobatic performance.

Another of our personal friends also came on – Sanjay Shihora – a talented artist and famous TV comedian from India, as well as being the owner of a well-established comedy club called Kookaburra, which we all used to hang out in, back in the day, before everyone got famous lol!

And soon it was time for dessert.

Rhubarb crumble and custard.
Rhubarb crumble and custard.

We had maple syrup-walnut pudding and rhubarb crumble and custard.

I’m allergic to nuts so I had two servings of rhubarb crumble sprinkled with strawberries and cherry compote, while “The Tall Young Gentleman” had two servings of maple syrup-walnut pudding!

After that performance, we had an onslaught of British music from the British / German conductor Rainer Hersch who was just a bellyfull of laughs and very, very funny with his Quartet orchestra and his slap-stick humour! 

Not long after, the leader and singer of the Savoy Dance Orchestra from Berlin and former lead singer of the legendary Pasadena Roof Orchestra – Robin Merrill – breezed in, in full jacket and tails as he had rushed over from another performance on German TV!

A fine reminder of the Last Night of the Proms,
A fine reminder of the Last Night of the Proms,

There was more charming music and a hell of a lot more laughs and towards the end we rounded up with the The Embassy Singers once again, an enthralling black and white video and pictorial archive of selective insights, into the most significant stages, of the life-time of Queen Elizabeth II. As well as a fine reminder of the Last Night of the Proms with pieces such as “We’ll meet again,” and “Land of Hope and Glory.”

It was during the singing of “Rule Britannia” that a gulp came into my throat and a little tear of nostalgia and happiness, that the Queen had made it.

Long may she live!

I had a great time. Thanks very much Wintergarten Varieté!

AND NOW, FOR A TINY BIT OF SHAKESPEARE!

A potrait of William Shakespeare.
A potrait of William Shakespeare.

I love Shakespeare!

Everywhere you go and in my opinion, everywhere you look, there is something influenced by the books and writings of Shakespeare!

As you know, last week was not only the Queen’s birthday  but Shakespeare’s birthday too!

On April 23rd.

In fact, that day not only marked William Shakespeare’s birth, but also his death!

Shakespeare in Love!

2016 was the 400th anniversary of lifetime and all over the world was a live broadcasting showing of Shakespeare Live! From the RSC in the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, hosted by David Tennant!

I have to confess that the marketing of Shakespeare in Berlin was so dismal and cruelly inadequate, such that I took up the marketing myself and started blasting my Twitter and Facebook feed, so that my friends and followers would know.

I mean, firstly, there were only two cinemas that were showing the broadcast.

In the whole city!

And secondly, when I went to buy my ticket on April 19th, just 4 days before the showing, only six (6) seats had been sold.

Six!

The house of Anne Hathaway - Shakespeare's wife!
The house of Anne Hathaway – Shakespeare’s wife!

I was amazed and utterly annoyed. So I swung into action and started telling everyone all about it!

Even with all the palaver, I still had a very awesome night.

David Tennant and Catherine Tate were marvellous and even Prince Charles joined in, and made a cameo appearance and was a very good sport!

Let’s just say “To be, or not to be, that is the QUESTION!” or “To be, OR not to be, that is the question!”

It was enormously funny, watch and see for yourself right here lol!

Me thinks there’s a PR job somewhere with my name on it. Hint! Hint!

TO BE OR NOT TO BE? THAT ISN’T A QUESTION. THAT’S A NIGHT OUT WITH WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE!

Shakespeare Lives and there's the living proof. Oh yeah. The skull!
Shakespeare Lives and there’s the living proof.
Oh yeah. The skull!

WHAT IS SHAKESPEARE LIVES AND SHAKESPEARE 400?

King Ed VI - William Shakespeare.
King Ed VI – William Shakespeare.

Shakespeare Lives and Shakespeare 400 is:

  • A life’s work.
  • A 400-year legacy.
  • A year of celebrations.

It’s also a worldwide celebration of the enduring global impact, relevance and creativity of William Shakespeare – the world’s best known Briton – and the UK’s most successful cultural export ever, on the 400th anniversary of his death in 2016. All over the world are activities and events in more than 140 countries, new creative commissions, partnerships with the UK’s most influential cultural institutions, and a global social media campaign to reach millions of people.

Phew!

FUN FACTS ABOUT SHAKESPEARE!

The hilarious chaps from "Horrible Histories!"
The hilarious chaps from “Horrible Histories!”
  • Shakespeare holds the Guinness World Record for being the most filmed author in the world!
  • The word ‘love’ appears 2,191 times in the complete works of Shakespeare!
  • His plays are set in 12 countries, with cities in present-day Italy being Shakespeare’s favourite.
  • Shakespeare lived in Stratford-upon-Avon, a handsome market town 20 miles south-east of Birmingham a little over two (2) hours from London. I’ve been there and it’s a lovely place with lots of huge swans that bite!
  • Shakespeare married an older woman – Anne Hathaway – who was three months pregnant at the time!
  • The only comedy set in the UK is The Merry Wives of Windsor.
  • Since 1960, there have been publications and productions of Hamlet in more than 75 languages!
  • Hamlet has even been translated into Klingon, Esperanto, and Interlingua!
  • Romeo and Juliet has been performed in 24 countries in the last ten years.
  • Very little is known about the life of William Shakespeare, but between about 1590 and 1613, he wrote at least 37 plays and 154 sonnets!
The gorgeous David Tennant as William Shakespeare's Richard II.
The gorgeous David Tennant as William Shakespeare’s Richard II.
  • William Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets have been adapted into 420 feature films and TV-movies!
  • Shakespeare wrote many plays and many poems. The most famous among his 10 tragedies are Hamlet, Othello, and King Lear.
  • Shakespeare’s best-known poems are The Sonnets, first published in 1609.
  • West Side Story (Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins) was inspired by Romeo and Juliet.
  • Kiss Me, Kate (George Sidney) was inspired by The Taming of the Shrew.
  • Forbidden Planet (Nicholas Nayfack) was inspired by The Tempest.
  • Looking for Richard (Al Pacino) was inspired by Richard III.
  • The most popular name from a Shakespeare play used today is Olivia.
  • Romeo and Juliet is based on an Italian folktale, which Shakespeare read in translation.
  • Shakespeare’s epitaph wards off would-be grave robbers with a curse and indeed, Shakespeare’s remains have yet to be disturbed!
  • It’s believed that Shakespeare wore a gold hoop earring, as he lived a bohemian lifestyle and was not a pirate!
  • Some people think Shakespeare was a fraud and was not to be!
Illuminating Shakespeare Artists' Impression.
Illuminating Shakespeare Artists’ Impression.

That’s it for now!

This article is not sponsored and even though I received a complimentary invitation, all opinions and the scrumptious rhubarb crumble and custard that I had at the Gala, are my very own!

In the summer I’ll be going to Germany, France, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and possibly Russia!

In the next few weeks, I’ll be finalising my writing about Spain and focusing on Portugal!

Sometime between now and May 1st, I’ll be visiting the interactive exhibition Discover Mexico or Entdecke Mexiko taking place on Washingtonplatz. It’s free to the public. Go see!

On April 27th, I’ll be attending STRICTLY STAND-UP – The English Comedy Night Show!

On April 29th, the TV interviewed that I did for Deutsche Welle (Germany’s international broadcasting station), about the 5th wedding anniversary of our very own William & Kate, will be broadcast! As soon as I get the exact details, I’ll inform you all via Twitter and Facebook!

On May 5th, I’ll be at a Travel Massive & DNX Mingle so if you’re a blogger or just interested in travel, lifestyle or travel technology, then come and meet us! Registration and attendance is free of charge!

From May 18th – May 22nd, I’ll be at the Berlin Music Video Award ceremony.

April is hopping!

Berlin is going to be so much fun, so if you’re in town, come and join us!

I’ll be there. Will you?

As usual, you can also follow me via daily tweets and pictures on Twitter & FB!

If you’re not in Berlin in April, you must be bonkers!

Watch this space!

To be or not to be? That isn't a question, that's the Queen's dinner & a Night Out with William Shakespeare!
To be or not to be? That isn’t a question, that’s the Queen’s dinner & a Night Out with William Shakespeare!

Would you choose dinner with the Queen? Would you choose beer with Shakespeare? Or do you prefer rhubard and custard?

See you in Berlin.

If you like this post or if you have any questions send me a tweet, talk to me on Facebook, find me on Linkedin, make a comment below, look for me on Google+ or send me an Email: victoria@thebritishberliner.com

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Glitzy burlesque, and utter SHEER MADNESS!

Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn. Photo@ R.Pater
Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn.
Photo@ R.Pater

My goodness, what a lovely summer we’re having. The weather is glorious and Berliners are out and about.

July was so much fun. I went to Berlin Fashion Week Yay!

I got my first ever press pass and I have to tell you like, if you’re ever going to dance the night away, you’ve got to totally do it in Berlin!

Last week, my husbandThe Music Producer and I went to a music, variety, show, and venue called the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin. If you recall in May, I pretty much went to the last showing of Breakin’ Mozart. The performance was so popular that they’re bringing the production back again in 2015!

I had such a good time that I asked to watch the latest production of the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin called: SHEER MADNESS or (in German), Der Helle Wahnsinn.

Going bonkers at Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn. Photo@ R.Pater
Going bonkers at Sheer Madness or Der Helle Wahnsinn.
Photo@ R.Pater

Utter Sheer Madness!

WHAT’S THE WINTERGARTEN VARIETÉ BERLIN or SIMPLY WINTERGARTEN BERLIN?

 A vintage Berlin 1940's advertisement poster.
A vintage Berlin 1940’s advertisement poster.

Well, the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is a venue that was considered one of the stage entertainment places to be, between 1887 and 1943.

Today, the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is now a large variety theatre and located in a different part of Berlin known as Schöneberg. Schöneberg is a stylish, leafy suburb with boulevards and open-air markets.

Schöneberg also happens to be Berlin’s popular centre of gay life and community, where Christopher Isherwood (the inspiration of both the musical and the film “Cabaret”), once used to live, and where Marlene Dietrich used to frequent the legendary “El Dorado” bar.

 Sara Bowden showing her true colours at Sheer Madness. photo@ Robert Pater

Sara Bowden showing her true colours at Sheer Madness.
photo@ Robert Pater

But I digress. I mean SHEER MADNESS?

Berlin is no stranger to “the other” and in fact, you only have to walk around for a few hours to realise that we’re all pretty weird around here, and completely bonkers. In fact, someone once brought a pony onto the train a few years ago.

A pony!

We’ve also had a pack of dogs that looked suspiciously like a pack of wolves.

On. The. Train!

Last winter, The Music Producer and I went to the student-filled suburb of Friedrichshain on the tram, and practically everyone on the tram (even though it’s technically illegal), had a bottle of beer in their hands. One guy even had a glass too and was pouring it in a very relaxed manner! I myself, have walked into one of Europe’s oldest luxury hotel groups: the prestigeous Hotel Adlon Kempinski with bare feet, hair all astray, and make-up stuck to the side of my mouth!

So what’s it all about?

We're not crazy. You are! Photo@ R.Pater
We’re not crazy. You are! Photo@ R.Pater

WHAT IS SHEER MADNESS?

SHEER MADNESS or (in German), Der Helle Wahnsinn is a glitzy, burlesque, artistic show. A blend of acrobatics, dance and live music, never seen before. The show is about the bright imagination of a glitzy and flamboyant gay man called Herbert Maria Freiherr von Heymann, who shortly after World War II,  was committed for “healing purposes,” to a madhouse.

WHAT DOES SHEER MADNESS MEAN?

Well, according to my huge Collins English Dictionary & Thesaurus, madness can be defined as “insanity, lunacy, extreme anger, excitement, foolishness, or rabies!”

Yeah, that sounds pretty much like a large number of people who live in Berlin, and I’d say that I was extremely sane!

The story goes that when Herbert Maria Freiherr von Heymann arrives at the madhouse, he meets a large number of people bordering on the weird, to the utter insane.

Rummelsnuff as "Hans the Wave" showing his stuff at Sheer Madness. Don't you think he looks like Popeye with the pipe, muscles, and everything?!! Photo@ Robert Pater
Rummelsnuff as “Hans the Wave” showing his stuff at Sheer Madness. Don’t you think he looks like Popeye with the pipe, muscles, and everything?! Photo@ Robert Pater

He meets “Hans the Wave”, a former sailor who loves athletic sports, sailor songs, and lives in a world of his own.

He meets a beautiful woman who has exciting exhibitionist fits and who believes that she is the white Josephine Baker.

Some of the cast and Florian Zumkehr as "Karl the Knife" at Sheer Madness. Photo@ R.Pater
Some of the cast and Florian Zumkehr as “Karl the Knife” at Sheer Madness. Photo@ R.Pater

He meets “Karl the Knife” who is so dangerous and unpredictable, that he is permanently kept in a straitjacket because he is alleged to be a stabbing serial killer.

He meets “Kling” who doesn’t talk, but is nevertheless very communicative with his body percussion sounds.

“Somalso” is a schizophrenic woman who believes she is in a variety of different bodies.

“Sarotti,” the son of a German mother and a Moroccan father and by definition, already mad. By virtue of his birth!

The strange Collins Brothers at Sheer Madness. Photos@ R.Pater
The strange Collins Brothers at Sheer Madness.
Photos@ R.Pater

The Collins Brother, a crazy sibling set of two brothers, who try to perform magical acts.

And finally, there is the Tzigane boy-girl “Punka” – a young man who always wears girl clothing, and hardly talks.

These “mad” people live a miserable existence in the asylum, left alone with their hallucinations, fantasies, and stories. This changes however, when Herbert Maria Freiherr von Heymann joins them.

It was impossible to knock the humour, sarcasm, and joy of living, out of him. In fact, the asylum was just what he needed.

An audience!

David Pereira as "Punka" in Sheer Madness. Photo@ R. Pater
David Pereira as “Punka” in Sheer Madness.
Photo@ R. Pater

I won’t tell you anything more except that the songs were written by a British friend of ours – Jack Woodhead –  who also performs the role of Herbert Maria Freiherr von Heymann. He’s just as eccentric as I am, if not more so! And the boy-girl “Punka” was played by the rather gorgeous Spanish acrobatic artist – David Pereira.

DO I NEED TO UNDERSTAND GERMAN TO WATCH IT?

Not reaLLy.

Most of the songs which are written by Jack Woodhead and David Pereira, are sung in English. The general script is in German but the action surrounding the show, can be understood! The show is very suitable for an international audience but perhaps not for very young children, who might wonder why the girls keep lifting up their dresses and showing their knickers!

ANYTHING ELSE?

The show ends on October 5th, 2014 and is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, so if you want to watch it (what with the holidays n’ all), now’s probably the time!

Jack Woodhead at Sheer Madness: A man who can wear heels! Photo@ R.Pater
Jack Woodhead at Sheer Madness: A man who can wear heels!
Photo@ R.Pater

MY VERDICT?

A colourful show full of utter sheer madness, and laughter.

I love a man who can wear heels as well as I can!

Jack Woodhead with a lovely pair of silver, sparkly shoes that I want! Photo@Jack woodhead.
Jack Woodhead with a lovely pair of silver, sparkly shoes that I want!
Photo@Jack woodhead.

SHEER MADNESS is an intriguing story of screaming people, clothes gone awry, and people gone mad. The songs are a reflection of times gone by, freedom, and heartfelt songs of hope!

The show is a performance of acrobatic twists and turns, erotic ballet, tap-dancing on tables and beds, a schizophrenic girl who thinks she’s Hitler or perhaps the Queen, and a mad girl with huge circular hoops, strapped onto an operating chair!

If you like glitzy burlesque, innovative but intriguing lyrics, combined with first class acrobatics, performed by fit, attractive, people then you’ll love SHEER MADNESS at the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin. SHEER MADNESS is a show worth going to, while you are in Berlin!

David Pereira as "Punka" and Ashia Grzesik as "Sister Hildegard" in Sheer Madness. Photo@ Robert Pater.
David Pereira as “Punka” and Ashia Grzesik as “Sister Hildegard” in Sheer Madness.
Photo@ Robert Pater.

Because you can:

  • Be extremely close to a cast of gorgeous, freaky, people (depending on your ticket), as pretty much every seating comes with tables, so that you can eat and drink to your hearts’ delight.
  • See a Burlesque strip-tease.
  • See a paper-eating-acrobatic-maniac stand on an enormous pile of books, on a grand piano, and at the same time, play a guitar!
  • Watch a tightrope artist.
  • Watch a magical disappearing act!
  • Come early, hang out with the uniformed doormen, and have your photo taken by the theatre’s professional photographer for only €5.00.

A Justin-Timberlake look-alike who can tap dance, a pretty young woman doing a burlesque strip-tease, gorgeous sexy erotic acrobatic performers who can dance and sing. What’s not to like?

A brilliant show.

Berlin in the 1920's. © Deutsches Plakat Museum im Museum Folkwang, 2012
Berlin in the 1920’s.
© Deutsches Plakat Museum im Museum Folkwang, 2012

WHAT IF SHEER MADNESS ISN’T MY CUP OF TEA?

Not to worry. Berlin is a capital city. There is always more to see, and something else to do. Keep reading my blog. More coming soon!

SHEER MADNESS runs until the 5th of October, 2014 so get your tickets soon!

Tickets for SHEER MADNESS in Berlin are from €24.50 for adults and reduced for children, students, and groups. ShowCafe €27.00 or for families €95.00 for 4 people including tea, coffee and cake! Tickets can be bought online here.

Approximate running time: About 2 hours.

For more information about the show please contact: SHEER MADNESS.

For more information about the venue please contact: Wintergarten Varieté Berlin.

Burlesque Night by Joanne Claxton. Courtesy of fineartamerica.com
Burlesque Night by Joanne Claxton.
Courtesy of fineartamerica.com

This article is not sponsored and even though I received a complimentary ticket, all opinions and the glittering glasses of champagne and fancy beer that I happily drank, are my very own!

August is a new month, I’ll be writing about summer time activities in Berlin, and what to do when you get here.

August will also be the month when I look back on some of the blog awards that I received and which I never got to write about, due to the marvellous, in the moment, lifestyle that I have LOL!

August and September will also bring a few surprises that I’m sure that you’ll love. One of them is the Berlin Music Week Festival which both The Music Producer and I are extremely excited about LOL! The other surprises, you’ll have to wait until the end of August or early September to find out, so stay on my blog!

This city is the bomb!

Are you coming?

Watch this space!

Not far from home. In Berlin. Madness personified!
Not far from home. In Berlin. Madness personified!

On a last note, don’t forget to check out the Commonwealth Games taking place in Glasgow, Scotland. Great things are happening!

David Pereira and Jack Woodhead keeping it together, at Sheer Madness. Photo@ Robert Pater
David Pereira and Jack Woodhead keeping it together, at Sheer Madness. Photo@ Robert Pater

Have you been to a glitzy burlesque show? Would you describe yourself as mad, foolish, or excited? Have you ever had rabies?!

See you in Berlin.

If you like this post.

Share it! Tweet it! Like it!

So you think you know Mozart? Breakin’ Mozart in Berlin!

Breakin' Mozart
Breakin’ Mozart

It’s summer! It’s summer!!

It’s so good to be in Berlin right now. The sun has begun to shine and the summer festivities start in June.

What a city!

In April, I told you that for the months of May and June, I will be concentrating exclusively on Berlin, and Berlin alone. Come July and August, I’ll have a whole lot more stuff to share with you…!

In May, I watched a Shakespeare production of blood and yore. After that, I went all glamorous and watched a cabaret production called SHOW ME which you can still catch until July 19th, 2014. Then my cultural side came out so I went to the museum. All. Night. Long! It’s no wonder that I desperately needed fresh air, so I chose life and went on an alternative walking tour in Berlin.

Phil Os. Yeah! Photo by Phil Os.
Phil Os. Yeah! Photo by Phil Os.

Last week was a pretty busy week. I went to watch a British stand-up comedian and actor called Bill Bailey Live at the Quatsch Comedy Club and I also got on the V.I.P. press list for the Berlin Music Video Awards. More about this in the coming weeks. So stay tuned!

About a week ago, I went to watch a performance with a difference at a music, variety and show venue called the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin.

Breakin' Mozart Daniel DDC stretching out. Photo credit: Jonathan. F. Kromer
Breakin’ Mozart Daniel DDC stretching out.
Photo credit: Jonathan. F. Kromer

That’s right.

I went to watch Mozart but not Mozart as we all know it, but Mozart breakdancing, doing the backflip and generally; just chillin’.

Yep! I went to watch a show called Breakin’ Mozart. Not breaking but breakin’!

The DDC Company urban breakdancing. Photo credit: DPS-Photography.
The DDC Company urban breakdancing.
Photo credit: DPS-Photography.

WHAT’S THE WINTERGARTEN VARIETÉS BERLIN or SIMPLY WINTERGARTEN BERLIN?

Well, the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is a venue that was considered one of the stage entertainment places to be, between 1887 and 1943. It was originally built as a 5 – star hotel and was the first movie theater / cinema in the world in 1895! However due to WWII, in 1944 it was bombed and destroyed, and later re-opened successfully with the magnificent act of Siegfried & Roy (Las Vegas fame), in 1992.

Houdini Wintergarten Berlin. Many, many years ago!
Houdini Wintergarten Berlin. Many, many years ago!

Today, the Wintergarten Varieté Berlin is now a large variety theatre and located in a different part of Berlin known as Schöneberg. Schöneberg is a stylish, leafy suburb with boulevards and open-air markets. Schöneberg also happens to be Berlin’s popular centre of gay life and community, where Christopher Isherwood (the inspiration of both the musical and the film “Cabaret”), once used to live, and where Marlene Dietrich used to frequent the legendary “El Dorado” bar.

Remi Alex Wiga. It's all about Berlin!
Remi Alex Wiga.
It’s all about Berlin!

WHAT IS BREAKIN’ MOZART?

Breakin’ Mozart is a combination of first class acrobatics, break-dancing, and artistic performances under the musical direction and influence of Mozart!

The breakdancing performers known as The DDC Company are one of the best breakdance groups in Germany and were finalist of “Got to dance 2013,” semi-finalist of “Das Supertalent 2010,” and Breakdance World Champion in 2007 and 2012.

Tjorm doing his acrobatic stuff! Photo credit: Robert Pater.
Tjorm doing his acrobatic stuff!
Photo credit: Robert Pater.

The six dancers have caused sensations for several years with their very own breakdance style and their large novel stage shows. In Breakin’ Mozart they perform not only as experienced and outstanding dancers and acrobats, but also as enthralling comedians and entertainers.

They are joined by international artistes known as Phil Os with his whirling Diablo art. Chris and Felice who combine partner acrobatics with passionate body theatre. Tjorm and Ihor who present a youthful dynamic version of hand-on-hand acrobatics, and Vanina and Foucauld of the Duo Vertigo who perform a Chinese version of pole-dancing!

Chris and Felice. The only way is ballet! Photo credit: Yannick Schuette Photography.
Chris and Felice. The only way is ballet!
Photo credit: Yannick Schuette Photography.

WHAT DOES BREAKIN’ MOZART MEAN?

These performers combine their artistic skills and twisting bodies, to the tune and rhythm of the Vienna child prodigy – Mozart. Not only that, but there are various twists to the Mozart saga because these artists dance to a hip-hop version of Mozart along with techno music, dance music, drum and bass, and jungle music.

Ihor and Tjorm. These guys certainly know what they are doing LOL! Photo credit: Robert Pater.
Ihor and Tjorm. These guys certainly know what they are doing LOL!
Photo credit: Robert Pater.

In fact, at one point, they were dancing to I Am The Firestarter” from the British group of the 90’s – Prodigy! That’s how funky this show was.

There was also a beatbox performer who constantly added D.J. hip-hop mixes with his voice to create rhythm and beats on the microphone. His name is Robeat and In 2007 he was Vice Champion of the German Beatboxer Championship and performed on various German TV shows.

ROBEATthe beatbox performer. Photo credit: Robeat.
ROBEATthe beatbox performer. Photo credit: Robeat.

DO I NEED TO UNDERSTAND GERMAN TO WATCH IT?

Not at all. There were a few sentences at the beginning of the show in German and Robeat does ask for audience participation every now and then, but you’d quickly get the gist LOL! The show is very suitable for an international audience and young boys in particular, will certainly like the cool factor!

ANYTHING ELSE?

The show ends on June 8th, 2014 so if you want to watch it, you’d better hurry up!

MY VERDICT?

Very Impressive!

Vanina and Foucauld: the free-swinging pole-dancing act. Photo credit: Sylvie Moris.
Vanina and Foucauld: the free-swinging pole-dancing act. Photo credit: Sylvie Moris.

Breakin’ Mozart is a unique production of streetdance, break-dancing and ballet. I particularly liked the free-swinging pole-dancing act as it was quite nice to see an older man being “saved” by a much younger woman!

If you like unique orchestra versions and modern hip hop adaptations combined with first class acrobatics then you will love Breakin’ Mozart at the Wintergarten Berlin. Going to Breakin’ Mozart is a performance worth going to very, very soon, while you are here!

Breakin' Mozart. Dioni DDC. A flying butterfly! Photo credit: Jonathan F. Kromer.
Breakin’ Mozart. Dioni DDC. A flying butterfly!
Photo credit: Jonathan F. Kromer.

Because you can:

  • Be extremely close to the dancing Mozart (depending on your ticket), as pretty much seating comes with tables, so that you can eat and drink to your hearts’ delight.
  • See Mozart break-dancing.
  • See dancers in street urban clothing “doing” ballet.
  • Bob, tap, and nod along to House Music in the confines of a comfy seat, in a lavish setting.
  • Go back in musical time.
  • Come early, hang out with the uniformed doormen, and have your photo taken by the theatre’s professional photographer for only €5.00.

Fit topless guys wearing corduroy trousers. Supple young women with long wavy hair. An opera-singing prima-donna to the rhythm of hip-hop. Tight sexy trousers and a pair of breeches. What not to like?

A great show.

Ihor seinging around. Photo credit: Hendrick Kappe.
Ihor swinging around.
Photo credit: Hendrick Kappe.

WHAT IF BREAKIN’ MOZART ISN’T MY CUP OF TEA?

Berlin is a capital city. There is always more to see, and something else to do. Keep reading my blog. More coming soon!

Breakin’ Mozart only runs until the 8th of June, 2014 so get your tickets soon!

Tickets for Breakin’ Mozart in Berlin are from €24.50 for adults and reduced for children and students. ShowCafe €27.00 or for families €95.00 for 4 people including tea, coffee and cake! Tickets can be bought online here.

Approximate running time: About 2 hours .

For more information about the show please contact: Breakin’ Mozart.

For more information about the venue please contact: Wintergarten Berlin.

Breakin' Mozart Artwork. Last show. June 8th.
Breakin’ Mozart Artwork.
Last show. June 8th.

This article is not sponsored and even though I received a complimentary ticket, all opinions and the glittering glasses of champagne that I slowly drank, are my very own! Every week for the months of May and June, I’ll be writing about summer time in Berlin, and what to do when you get here.

Next week, I will be writing about Bill Bailey and the Quatsch Comedy english-speaking scene, and the week after, about the amazing Berlin Music Video Awards.

On 05.06.14, I will be watching the British National Theatre LIVE production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time based on the best-selling novel by Mark Haddon.

Next weekend will be the Carnival of Cultures or Karneval der Kulturen in Berlin. A brilliant event running from 06.06.14 – 09.06.14.

The 22nd Lesbian and Gay City Festival is taking place between 14.06.14 – 15.06.14.

Fête de la Musique a free you-don’t-have-to-pay-a-dime open air street music performance day, will take place all around Berlin, on 21.06.14.

Berlin’s Mardi Gras the 36th CSD – Christopher Street Day Gay Pride festivity, will be on 21.06.14.

Inside the Wintergarten-Berlin. Photo credit: Seidel.
Inside the Wintergarten-Berlin. Photo credit: Seidel.

On a last note, the EXPAT MARKT as part of the EXPAT EXPO is looking for members of the Berlin’s international English-speaking expat community, to present their creative businesses. if you’re in town and interested, please contact: Expat Expo.

Are you coming?

Watch this space!

Ihor and Tjorm getting close and personal. Photo credit: Robert Pater.
Ihor and Tjorm getting close and personal. Photo credit: Robert Pater.

Have you been to a break-dancing hip-hop show? Do you like Mozart?

See you in Berlin.

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