Giovanni. Eine Passion

Scenes between grave and myth. 
A sequence of pictures based on the successful production 
by Ulrike Schwab, STEGREIF.orchester and Neuköllner Oper

What an adventure: to protect against the pandemic we choose a new venue. Procession, festival, ritual and celebration of the GIOVANNI-PASSION take place in a cemetery according to the subject. Nature, local residents, light, wind and weather dictate us a new, daring version of the production that was so well received in the fall of 2019. Now the focus is less on the narrative of the world-famous opera and more on the pictorial, excerpted and associative aspects of the original.

The new GIOVANNI-PASSION is an expedition into a special space of nature (and civilization) and the alchemy of myth, the magic of Mozart’s music and the creativity of the ensemble. Once again, all images of women and men, role expectations and the ambivalence of attraction, seduction and assault are at stake – a wild celebration with the 22 singing musicians* and music-making singers* of Ulrike Schwab’s production and the STEGREIF.orchestra, which crosses gender boundaries and musical genres and playfully combines Mozart with jazz, flamenco and improvisation.

Please see our notes on attending the performances at the New St. Jacobi Cemetery below!

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Musical direction: Juri de Marco | Direction: Ulrike Schwab | Arrangements: Malte Schiller, Alistair Duncan, Bertram Burkert, Anna-Sophie Brüning, Juri de Marco, Nina Kazourian & ensemble members of the STEGREIF.orchestra | Musical rehearsal: Anna-Sophie Brüning | Set design: Pia Dederichs and Marina Stefan | Project idea/dramaturgy: Bernhard Glocksin

With: Hrund Ósk Árnadóttir, Derya Atakan, Sotiris Charalampous, Jeeyoung Lim, Enrico Wenzel, Justus Wilcken as well as Leon Albert, Bartosz Nowak, Anne-Sophie Bereuter, Julia Biłat, Bertram Burkert, Sebastian Casper, Nikola Djurica, Konstantin Döben, Alistair Duncan, Nina Kazourian, Paul Lapp, Valerie Leopold, Laura Lorx, Juri de Marco, Helena Montag, Jakob Petzl, Antonio Rivero, Celia Schann, Tabea Schrenk

With the kind support of Prinzessinnengarten Kollektiv Berlin, Kiezkapelle Neuer St. Jacobi-Friedhof and Evangelischer Friedhofsverband Berlin.

The world premiere of the indoor version took place on October 10, 2019 as a production of Neuköllner Oper and STEGREIF.orchester. It was funded by the Hauptstadtkulturfonds and supported by the Alfred-Töpfer-Stiftung, the Karl-Schlecht-Stiftung, GASAG, Radialsystem V and the Ministry of Science and Culture of Lower Saxony.

The event will take place in the Prinzessinnengärten at the New St. Jacobi Cemetery (Hermannstraße 99-105, 12051 Berlin | S+U Hermannstraße).
There are two parking spaces for people with disabilities in the entrance area of the cemetery, unfortunately the event itself is not barrier-free. We recommend sturdy shoes and appropriate clothing for attending the performances.

Please also see our safety notice in coordination with the current Senate Corona Ordinance:
Wearing a medical mask is mandatory during the event! We kindly ask you to come in time – no late admission after the beginning of the performance!

In case of rain the performance has to be cancelled. In case of unclear weather conditions we will publish the decision if the performance will take place or not at 18.30 on the respective day of the performance. Please note the current information on our website. Our box office will then be available for any refunds (, Tel.: 030/688907 77). The performances of GIOVANNI. A Passion will be documented on film and photography on September 1 & 2 and 4 & 5, 2021. The footage from September 1 & 2 will not be further exploited, the footage from the 4th & 5th will be broadcast on RBB. You can find more information about data protection here. Thank you for your understanding!

When purchasing tickets and visiting the show, please be aware of our safety instructions and precautions to contain the Corona pandemic.

photo: © Matthias Heyde

Wunderkammer III: Pilze

Why we are not individuals

In the autumnal princess garden we meet fascinating creatures. They make us wonder, sing and see the world differently. Whatever you thought about mushrooms: Mushrooms and humans are an inseparable team. They are everywhere, in, around and between us. They keep us alive, break down pollutants in the atmosphere, change animal and plant behavior, and influence how we humans feel and think. What’s more, fungi and especially mycelia, their underground network of filamentous extensions, reveal fascinating patterns of intelligence, communication and organization – including the fact that we are not individuals in the classical sense of the word. Inspirations for meeting the challenges of our time?

But mushroom structures also have a lot to do with music. A polyphonic music – polyphony – is something like a mirror, an experience of the networks and labyrinths of mushrooms in the audible. On this evening we will listen to polyphonic music by Monteverdi, Bach and Piazzolla, among others, and we will sing ourselves – an experience of the world in its sensually audible image. Music connects, like microorganisms and fungal structures connect humans, animals and plants.

With the fungus expert, microbiologist and artist Vera Meyer, the expert for swarm and other forms of organization Jens Krause and musicians we will go on a journey through gardens, chapels and cemeteries, become part of structures and a music that is a sensual reflection of the experience through simple canons to complex polyphony.

With Prof. Dr. Vera Meyer, microbiologist (TU Berlin), Prof. Dr. Jens Krause (HU Berlin), Markus Syperek (musical director), Leonardo von Papp (percussion), Hrund Ósk Árnadóttir (vocals) with music from Monteverdi to the present day.

Host and moderator: Bernhard Glocksin
Stage design: Sabrina Rossetto
Videoanimation: Vittorio Biscaro

This event is part of the WUNDERKAMMER-series.

In cooperation with the





The event will take place in the Prinzessinnengärten and the Kiezkapelle at the New St. Jacobi Cemetery (Hermannstraße 99-105, 12051 Berlin | S+U Hermannstraße).
In case of bad weather, the evening will take place entirely in the Kiezkapelle.

The performance on 9.9 will be recorded on film for documentation purposes. You can find information on data protection here. We ask for your understanding.



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© Martin Weinhold

Vera Meyer
is a biotechnologist and professor at the Technical University of Berlin, where she heads the Department of Applied and Molecular Microbiology. In her scientific research with fungi, she combines methods from the field of synthetic biology and systems biology in order to be able to produce drugs, proteins, platform chemicals and, more recently, building materials from fungi in the sense of a sustainable bioeconomy.  In addition, Vera Meyer is active as an artist under the pseudonym V. meer. In her artistic works, she translates the transformation and metabolic potential of her research objects into mushroom sculptures whose philosophical tone is subtle but unmistakable: nothing disappears in nature, everything is transformation.

© Andy Küchenmeister

Jens Krause
After his diploma studies at the Free University of Berlin and a PhD thesis at the University of Cambridge, Jens Krause spent several years doing research at Mount Allison University in Canada and Princeton University in the USA before taking up a professorship at Leeds University in England. Since 2009, Jens Krause has been a professor of fish ecology at the Humboldt University of Berlin and at the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries. He has been a member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities since 2014.

© Fabian Boehle

Markus Syperek
studied conducting, piano and singing in Lübeck and Karlsruhe. From 2003-2006 he worked as a solo repetiteur and Kapellmeister at the Volkstheater Rostock with numerous rehearsals in musical theater, conducting in concert and opera. Since 2006 he has worked in Berlin, Baden-Baden, Rostock, Hamburg and Kiel, as well as at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and the Festival Europäische Wochen Passau. Productions he has musically directed in recent years include the German premiere of 13 – A NEW MUSICAL, DER KLEINE HORRORLADEN, HEUTE ABEND: LOLA BLAU, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, DIE FLEDERMAUS, HÄNSEL UND GRETEL and most recently at the Neuköllner Oper WOLFSKINDER and DIE FLEISCH. His concert activities as solo pianist, chamber musician and Lied accompanist take him to numerous international stages. He also plays regularly as pianist for the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, the Rundfunkchor Berlin and the Berliner Philharmoniker. As Musical Director of the Brothers Grimm Festival Hanau from 2014 to 2018, Markus Syperek was responsible for all musical productions of the festival. He has also held a teaching position in classical voice at the UdK Berlin since 2018 and works as a composer and arranger for various theaters and music publishers.

© Privat

Hrund Ósk Árnadóttir
The Icelandic soprano began her studies in 2009 at the Reykjavík Academy of Vocal Arts. In 2014 she completed her master’s degree at the Hochschule für Musik “Hanns Eisler” Berlin, where she studied in the class of Prof. Janet Williams. Her performances included a stage version of Gustav Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder directed by Julia Lwowski at HAU Berlin in 2013. She made her debut at the neuköllner oper in January 2016 in the world premiere of the opera Das schwarze Wasser by Vivan and Ketan Bhatti. In October 2016, she made another appearance at the Neuköllner with her Tosca debut (Tosca G8) and in 2017 as Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus. The soprano has a broad repertoire, from the Baroque to contemporary eras, which includes roles such as Cleopatra in Handel’s Giulio Cesare, the Countess in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Lucia in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammemoor, Liu in Puccini’s Turandot and Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata. In addition to her performing practice, the Berlin-based singer has also been active as a voice teacher and vocal coach for several years.

© Benjamin Schwenen

Leonardo von Papp
Freelance drummer/percussionst/ Born in Brasilia, grew up in Brazil and Germany. Studied classical percussion at the University of Music in Würzburg. Scholarship and study Drum Set at the renowned Berklee College of Music in Boston (USA). Resides in Berlin and works as a freelance drummer, percussionist and recording engineer in the studio – theater/musicals/orchestra – bands throughout Germany.

When purchasing tickets and visiting the show, please be aware of our safety instructions and precautions to contain the Corona pandemic.

Photo: © Sabrina Rossetto