There are not many plays that explore the topics of music, artistic passion and their positive impacts on individuals and social structures as intensely as WIE IM HIMMEL, written by Kay Pollack on the basis of his eponymous, Academy Award-nominated film WIE IM HIMMEL (As It Is in Heaven).
The celebrated concert conductor Daniel Daréus is at the peak of his success and idolised by audience and critics alike, when he suffers a heart attack. He withdraws from public life and attempts to find his way back to himself in the solitude of his native village, where no one knows his artistic alias. Although all he really wants is to be left in peace, he soon agrees to take over the village’s church choir and to study Beethoven-lieder with them. With his unusual and inspiring working methods, Daniel soon wins over the singers and the choir increases in size and quality. At the same time, the members open up to each other, revealing many problems that had been hidden under the cloak of silence.
The strict parson, whose wife also belongs to the choir, sees how his influence on his congregation dwindles and he retaliates: He dismisses Daréus and revokes his leadership of the choir. But the members decide to take part in a competition against the parson’s will. Their performance becomes a triumph.
This final competition is an opportunity for interested choirs from Bonn to become part of this production on the opera’s stage.