In case anyone is wondering what The Arabian Night is about, here is what we are telling the press.
Roland Schimmelpfennig’s The Arabian Night is a sleek and sensual urban thriller, following the interweaving fantasies, crossed paths and conflicting desires of five individuals trapped in an apartment tower on the hottest night in history.
Lomeier, the building superintendent has lost the building’s water – somewhere around the 8th floor, the pipes have gone dry. His search for the missing water becomes a hallucinatory search for his dead wife who bares a striking resemblance to the primary tenant of 7-32, Ms. Franziska Dehke. Each night, when Franziska Dehke returns home from work she takes a shower and inexplicably falls into a deep sleep -awakening each morning, never having remembered the night before. Tonight she dreams of being abducted in a foreign land and of becoming the blonde concubine in the harem of an Arabian king. Nothing will awaken her, except for perhaps a kiss. Tonight Peter Karpati, an admirer from a building across the way watches Franziska shower. He journeys to her apartment to meet the object of his obsession but her kiss may become more curse than redemption. Franziska’s roommate Fatima Mansur awaits her own prince – Kalil - who visits every night. But tonight something is keeping him. He has disappeared, victim of the powers of the magical building that holds these five characters captive.
A nightmarish fairytale that is part madcap farce and part erotic thriller, The Arabian Night is fast-paced and exhilarating. The play runs about sixty minutes and has left audiences breathless in its numerous productions in America, Germany and around the world. The play was nominated Play of the Year by six German critics in 2001 and went on to be translated into many languages, receiving a high profile English-language premiere at the Royal Court Theatre in London. Rorschach Theatre will perform the new American translation by Melanie Dreyer.