Recipe For REVOLT: Rainer Fassbinder, filmmaker & playwright.

In anticipation of REVOLT. SHE SAID. REVOLT AGAIN., Soho Rep. asked playwright Alice Birch about art pieces that inspired her play. Alice came back to us with a formidable list of plays, photography, feminist essays, and poetry that have all been an influence on this piece of writing.

In a series we are calling “Recipes for REVOLT”, we will be delving a bit deeper into these art pieces to give you a sense of where this extraordinary play sprung.

Fassbinder’s play Preparadise sorry now is based on the infamous ‘Moors Murders’ committed by young serial killers and lovers, Ian Brady and Myra Hindley that took place in Great Britain in the mid ‘60s. Brady and Hindley were child killers. The German play examines the many brutalities of everyday life and includes graphic scenes of violence, murder, and sexual assault.

Its name plays off a notorious 1960s semi-improvisational theater piece by the New York City-based experimental theatre group The Living Theatre called Paradise Now, which explored various social taboos and on several occasions led to arrest on the grounds of indecent exposure. (Below is a five-minute trailer made, made about the play when it was first perfomed.)

Fassbinder was a German experimental filmmaker and playwright who is now considered to be a genius within both genres. He is most famous for the films Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (1974), The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant (1972), and The Marriage of Maria Braun (1979).

Fassbinder: an experimental genius
Fassbinder: an experimental genius

Like Alice Birch, Fassbinder constantly played with structure and tone in all his artistic output.

Myra Hindley herself went on to achieve a notoriety in the art world when British artist Marcus Harvey painted a portrait of Hindley made out of childrens’ hand prints. The paintign featured in the Royal Academy exhibition “Sensation!” which curated a group of so-called Young British Artists. The show went on to travel to The Brooklyn Museum in New York where it courted a whole different controversy surrounding an entirely different work of art.

"Myra Hindley", by British artist Marcus Harvey.
The painting “Myra Hindley”, by British artist Marcus Harvey.

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