Infinite Jest is considered to be one of the central pieces of 90s American literature and, according to ‹Time›, is among the 100 best novels in the English language. Infinite Jest was published in the States in 1996 and its author David Foster Wallace became a superstar in the literary scene overnight. The 1,500 pages strong novel literally bursts with linguistic creativity, a tremendous variety of topics, unerring societal criticism and humour. The stories of numerous main and supporting characters and how they are dealing with addiction and dependency are artfully woven together, central locations of the narrative are a tennis academy and a drug rehabilitation centre. Wallace writes about births, death struggles, love stories and separations, over-exaggerated salivation, beautiful nurses and birds suffering heart attacks in mid-air.
Director Thorsten Lensing and his team have condensed the material into an “intelligent, deep but also very funny evening at the theatre” (Frankfurter Rundschau). Distinguished actors from the world of theatre, film and TV such as Ursina Lardi, André Jung, Devid Striesow, Jasna Fritzi Bauer or Sebastian Blomberg act on an almost empty stage and with a limited amount of theatrical props: “This evening is like a rush”, concludes the NDR Kulturjournal. Lensing’s production was invited to the Theatertreffen 2020 and was the winner of the Nachtkritik-Theatertreffen 2019.
“This is pure theatre, plain and compelling, crazy, raucous, aggressive, revolting, but also delicate, sensitive and – above all – very, very funny. The extremely different performance styles of the individual actors result in a glittering whole.” (Volksfreund)
“It is nigh impossible to exceed the virtuoso of this taming of Wallace’s monster novel into a time-lapse version.” (Hamburger Abendblatt)
“One believes in this theatre and feels it can do anything, even overcoming gravity.” (NDR)
With Jasna Fritzi Bauer, Sebastian Blomberg, André Jung, Ursina Lardi, Heiko Pinkowski and Devid Striesow
Director, Script: Thorsten Lensing
Stage: Gordian Blumenthal, Ramun Capaul
Costume: Anette Guther
Dramaturgy: Thierry Mousset
Photos: David Baltzer / agentur zenit