Dramatist Claudio Macor, renowned for his dramas centred around little-known historical records, returns to the White Bear Theatre with his latest play. Different From the Others tells the story behind the first pro-gay film ever made – and it premieres 100 years after the film itself. Time to get booking!
Different From the Others runs at London’s White Bear Theatre for a limited season from 29 October to 16 November 2019. The premiere production is directed by three-time Offies nominated Jenny Eastop.
At the end of the First World War, there existed a rare historical moment, a mere 20 months, when Europe was liberal and free. Men held hands in public; Moscow and St Petersburg were gay and free from discrimination; Germany, feeling the full brunt of blame from the First World War, had yet to re-establish itself under the Nazi regime.
In that small window of opportunity came something quite extraordinary: the first pro-gay film ever made. One hundred years since the release of the German film Anders als die Andern (Different From the Others), Claudio Macor tells the backstage story of its making.
In Berlin in 1919, famous sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld becomes concerned with the increase in male suicide and decides to make a film to educate young gay men. He hires Richard Oswald to direct. The cast features stars Conrad Veidt (The Cabinet of Dr Caligari, Casablanca), Anita Berber and Reinhold Schunzel.
Claudio Macor‘s new Different From the Others stage play explores Magnus’ determination, the actor’s stories, the love story, the distribution, the aftermath and the ultimate betrayal: the Nazis tried to destroy all prints of the film… but one survived.
Macor first came across the Anders als die Andern film online and was amazed. He says:
“The inter-titles are so progressive they could’ve been written by modern-day activists. This is gay history that demands to be told.”
Macor’s other acclaimed plays based on largely forgotten real-life LGBTQ histories include: The Tailor-Made Man, about the silent screen star William “Billy” Haines, fired for being gay, which was revived at the White Bear in 2017 to mark the play’s 25th anniversary; and Savage, about Nazi doctor Carl Peter Værnet’s ill-conceived “cure” for homosexuality, premiered at the Arts Theatre in 2016.
Casting for Different From the Others is still to be announced.
Different From the Others runs from 29 October to 16 November 2019 at the White Bear Theatre, 138 Kennington Park Rd, Kennington, London SE11 4DJ, with performances Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm, Sundays at 4pm. Tickets are priced £12-16. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!