An interview with the actors Jinan Jaballah (15), Marko Milun Brkic (15) and Nikola Wiktoria Alexandra Bruder (16).

Marko, Nikola and Jinan, why are you taking part in the theater project?

Marko: I am taking part because I want to experience something new. We thought the remembrance workshop was such a small project from school which is then over all too quickly. But then there was another offer. At first, I didn't want to go, as I thought theater was always boring. But theater is really quite cool and each play has a real meaning. We were then often here at the Kammerspiele in the theater. The spoken parts were usually too long for me, but there were also funny scenes and surprises. I liked "Antigone" the most because the story was cool. Frangiskos was the one I liked best in this play, because he was funny. I would love to be in a play again, as an actor, maybe on the subject of war. I think it's exciting to think about.

Nikola: In the beginning, I didn't want to take part because it takes up a lot of my free time. But then I realized I didn't feel like being at home anyway, so I just went along with it. I did theater in elementary school and it was just "being made up to look like an animal". But here, you've simply got everything: Stage, costumes, makeup – which looks good – lighting, just about everything. Real theater, I mean. At first, I didn't know most of them, but I wanted out. I have found out that I have the ability to memorize a lot. And that you should not touch dry ice. I'd rather make theater myself than watch it. I take part because of the variety and because I learn a lot about myself.

Jinan: It's really enjoy working with the others, especially when it comes to acting. And: everyone is nice. My favorite part of our play is the classroom scenes. They are part of my life. People are not all the same, sometimes they're quite different to what you expect. That's what I learned: I have to question my own prejudices as well.

Are you interested in history and did you learn anything new in the theater lab?

Marko: I learned that we should all live together, no matter what the religion or anything else. It's okay to be different. It's easy to talk to each other because we all grew up in Germany, so we understand each other very quickly – it's easy if you just try.

Nikola: I've always been interested in history and in my own history. I found I could teach the others a lot of new things. I learned complicated new words that make you look clever. And I struggled through heavy texts and difficult topics. I discovered I am capable of more than I thought.

Jinan: Actually, I'm not that interested in history, but I've already learned something new. Learned details about the National Socialist era – that's really exciting. But I wouldn't read much about it by choice.

Do you think it is important that we in Germany engage in a critical examination of National Socialist history? How do you prefer to do that: Theater, movies and series, books...

Marko: I think it is important to make use of a lot of methods but some people will never understand – no matter how many times you tell them. For example, they'll never understand that you should just live together no matter what your religion, culture or background. Theater is a particularly good medium because it goes deep into the subject matter and pays a great deal of attention to detail. Film, I think, is almost better because it's more popular. But books are sometimes good because they explain more and take more time to process the content.

Nikola: All methods are good, as long as they are told correctly. Films only tell selected things. Books also hide a lot. At school, you don't even learn what the National Socialists actually did. They don't go into any depth. The interesting thing about history classes is what's left out. You have to tell the whole truth; people shouldn't hide anything. People need to know everything that happened.

Jinan: All possible media should talk about the era. Our democracy is very persistent. That is why we should use all means at our disposal to continue being persistent. It's important to make use of a variety of media because then, even if you're still young, you can make up your own mind about the story and not be told what to think by adults around you. I'm not quite sure, but with films and series today you also have a wider reach. I don't think books are a good medium. I don't like writing and reading much. With other means, you have more images in your mind – I'm then more able to empathize, but that's different for each person.


An interview with:

Jinan Jaballah (15) speaks Arabic, English and German. 
"My wish is that the world can finally live in peace, without wars, racism, etc."

Marko Milun Brkic (15) speaks German and Serbian/Bosnian. 
"My wish for the future is to end world hunger. I want to become a policeman or something else that has to do with the state."

Nikola Wiktoria Alexandra Bruder (16) speaks German, English and Polish.
"I want to become a teacher so I can teach the children properly and treat them properly."