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Bertolt Brecht - Playwright
Bertolt Brecht was born on the 10 February, 1898, in Ausburg. He left Germany in 1933 at the rise of the Nazis, and lived in the USA from 1941-47, before returning to Europe. He died on the 14 August, 1956, in Berlin.
Brecht is most well known for his work as a dramatist and playwright. The inventor of the alienation technique in theatre, Brecht strongly held that the joy of theatre was in watching a performance, something created just for the audience; therefore the Brechtian school of acting requires that the audience be constantly reminded that they are watching a play not that real life is being portrayed.
His plays are almost all political, and Brecht believed avidly that theatre has the power to influence and move people, and that a play should carry a strong message. His plays include:
Only recently has Brecht been recognised as one of the greatest European poets of the twentieth century, but his poetry has now largely been translated into English, and, whilst they probably lose a little in comparison to the original German, many of his poems retain their power in translation, carried through by the strength of his convictions and the depth of the feelings he expresses.
Here is just a tiny selection of Brecht's shorter poems - the majority of his poems are far longer, some stretching to pages, and in many parts.
In the early hours
The Lovely Fork
When the fork with the lovely horn handle broke
Were a wind to arise
IronIn a dream last night
I saw a great storm
It seized the scaffolding
It tore the cross-clasps
The iron ones, down.
But what was made of wood
Swayed and remained.
Only a Fleeting Glance
'Only a fleeting glance
'Only in passing I
Both let the time go by
And I Always Thought
And I always thought: the very simplest words
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