“In the staging of our production, the men all become gay,” says Stefan Maria Brettschneider, dramaturgue of Lysistrateat theaterForum kreuzberg in Berlin. “They all turn into homosexuals and don’t need the women anymore. In that sense, of course, there won’t be a ‘happy ending,’ and I acknowledge that this is a rather pessimistic point of view. I am no pessimist by nature, but I do assume that there will be a war.
“That doesn’t mean, however, that I’ve given up. To let Lysistrataend on a pessimistic note is a challenge to notgo to war — so much more has to happen to avoid it. I do not want to say that the peace movement does not have an effect, but it is rather simple to say you can stop the war just with this one action.
“Lysistratais called a masterpiece. But it does not answer the question: How do we arrive at a solution? The men have to be forced into happiness. So where is the moment of enlightenment and understanding? Of course, it is a first step.
“Sex in Lysistratais a metaphor. It could have been farmers saying, ‘We put down our tools, and we will not grow produce anymore.’ But Aristophanes chose sex as opposed to produce — maybe because it is the opposite of war, as one expression of love.”