Mein Kampf by George Tabori

It’s not often you see a chicken hacked-up on stage, gutted and so affrontingly dismembered to the point you might question your carnivorous ways. Until you see Mein Kampf by George Tabori.

You watch the play, get mesmerised by its fast pace and intricate script and affronted by intense nudity and gruesome butchering.

Every bit as interestingly intoxicating (probably the chicken) as it sounds and as gruesome as it may have just been described, it’s a meticulously drafted, rigidly performed recount of the history of one of the most sick, tyrannical dictators in history: Adolf Hitler.

Played by the fast-talking, knee-scraping, most-of-the-time baffling Glenn van Oosterom, Hitler’s character as the smarmy underside of the pit of humanity that he was is thoroughly highlighted. As much as a farce as his character is, the determination for success of the man himself and the potentially psychopathic and questionable behaviour of the dictator are all played out stupendously.

Humour, wit and an artistic flair that escapes the largely uneducated in matters of Hitler and World War II fill the play and are carried by the protagonist, flanked professionally by its other two other leads, Shlomo Hertzl as played by Mark Wilson and Lobkowitz as played by Mark Bonanno.

Written in 1987 by George Tabori, himself a holocaust survivor and based around Hitler’s determination to make it as an artist, the play explores many themes. Hitler’s failure and later rise to the rule of Germany and initiation of the war uses many metaphorical elements, which adds to its the supernatural, intense and quite graphically jarring scenes.

Go and see it? Sure. For the layman expect an overwhelming sensation of confusion and for the vegetarian; you made the right choice.

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