The Phoenix Theater and the funny side of a marital crisis

The Phoenix Theater and the funny side of a marital crisis
Karina Pele and Martin Brunnemann put on the wedding ring.
Image: Andreas Kurz/Phoenix

Louise and Tom have got it: They’ve slipped into a real marital crisis. Now they are trying to repair their relationship in couples therapy. Before appointments, the doctor and the journalist regularly meet in the pub opposite to recap the ups and downs of their relationship.

The comedy “Nobody Said You Should Move Out” based on the novel of the same name by British author Nick Hornby, published in 2019, follows Louise and Tom in their pub conversations for ten weeks with lots of sarcasm and British humor. Next Thursday the piece will have its Austrian premiere at the Theater Phönix in Linz. “Tom and Louise show the funny side of a marital crisis,” says Silke Dörner, artistic director of Phönix, describing the piece.

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Directing for the first time at Phoenix Susanne Draxler (Picture). In recent years, the trained actress and musical performer has primarily staged at independent Viennese theaters, such as the Theater am Werk on Petersplatz or the Theater on Gumpendorfer Straße. “The piece penetrates deeply into the intimacy of the characters and shows marital problems from the banal to the profound,” says the Viennese. As the location for the action, she and designer Elisabeth Gressel chose a stylized room framed by armchairs. “In each scene, a chair is placed in the middle that represents the respective topic.” So things are getting more and more chaotic on stage. Between the scenes there are short musical passages in which the audience is also involved.

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The actors are Karina Pele and Martin Brunnemann, who are on stage in the conversation piece for one and three quarters of an hour without a break. “It’s a celebration for the actors,” says Dörner. Director Draxler loves Hornby’s texts: “He holds up a mirror to us and deals with topics humorously without losing depth or seriousness.”

“Nobody told you to move out”, comedy based on the novel by Nick Hornby, premieres on February 29th at 7:30 p.m. at the Phönix Theater. Further performances until April 11th. Information and maps are available here theater-phoenix.at.

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