I’ve always felt that if you’re learning English, you should take your learning outside the classroom. If you live in Munich or other major cities in Europe, there are quite a number of events in English in the fall and winter. I used to take people out to the movies regularly at the Cinema on Nymphenburgerstr. here in Munich. But then came DVD, so going out to the movies became a little less special. The best part became going to a bar afterwards, and we started skipping the movie altogether. My students also had trouble understanding what the movie actors were saying, especially in the more interesting films. They say they generally understand stage actors better, because they speak more clearly and slowly. The actors performing here in Europe also know that their audience is not made up entirely of native speakers.
So now my favorite English night out is seeing a play in English. For instance, my Morphosys group and I are going to see “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde performed by the American Drama Group at the Amerika Haus (schedule). Last year they put on Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, and did a pretty good job, working with minimal stage props and a lot of imagination. One advantage of going to a classic piece like that is that you can generally prepare a little, for instance using enotes.com, a website which provides free materials.
Another play I want to see this fall is “My Mother’s Feet” produced by the Munich-based English-language BeMe Theatre, playing at the Pasinger Fabrik from 19 November to 6 December. Their new announcement came in yesterday:
The blurb says: “Dan thinks that someone is stalking him. What’s worse…that someone is his Mother. He can’t run away from home fast enough and, even as an adult, he can’t escape the loving mother who follows him wherever he goes. A surprising and moving story about the double-edged blade of a mother’s love. It’s funny…until it scares the life out of you.” The Toronto Sun gave it “full points for tackling a difficult subject in these times of political correctness” and said it’s a “must see.” Now, it sounds pretty psychological to me, so I’m not sure… but since this company got rave reviews for I, Claudia – which I missed – I’m definitely going to this one. (Reservations: Tel. 089 – 829 290 79 – www.ticketbox.de).
If you’re interested in going, let me know. Maybe we can go together. Also, if you hear of nice events in English, send them to me and I’ll post them.