Drama and MFL Join Forces for 'Sophie Scholl: Die Letzten Tage'
On the Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 June, Bede’s staged its production of Sophie Scholl: Die Letzten Tage, a play performed in German with English subtitles.
Featuring both German students and native German speakers, the production saw the Modern Foreign Languages and Drama departments join forces for the first time, to produce a play that was both historical and emotional. The production was based on the true story of Sophie and Hans Scholl, a pair of siblings who resisted the Nazi regime. The pair were arrested at Munich University in 1943 for distributing leaflets that opposed Hitler, the Nazi Party and the war. They, along with their accomplice Christoph Probst, were subsequently interrogated, tried, and on the 22 February 1943, executed for high treason.
All photographs taken by Tom McGovern
The production was inspired by a film based on the same story (which the A-Level German students study as part of their course), and was very much a collaborative piece. Not only was there superb direction from both Mr Henrik Rohmer and Ms Eleanor Conlon (who also created the wonderful costumes), but also a beautiful set of digital backgrounds created by Lower Sixth pupil, Matthew Maloney. The makeup was skilfully done by Firdest Karaca, and Evie Taylor’s stage management was greatly appreciated!
Many students were also involved in creating a 5-minute film to prologue the play, showing the back stories of some of the characters. A huge deal of work went into this film, and so special thanks must go to all those who helped to create it.
For me, one of the best things about this production was being able to work with a new and diverse group of people, not all of whom had necessarily been onstage before! I myself was given the honour of playing Sophie, but I owe everything to the fantastic actors I was surrounded with. Ben Peppard took on the challenging role of Inspector Robert Mohr and has been highly commended for his debut performance at Bede’s. Béla Rohmer played a passionate Hans Scholl, and Paul Bancroft made a compelling Christoph Probst. Special mention must also go to Alice Stanley, Lorenzo Sanchez, Gabriel Neumann and Romy Altman, as well as pupils who don’t even study German but bravely took on speaking roles, such as Tom McGovern, George Lewis, Freddie Clemo, Kozma Prelevic and Jamila Nasseraldeen. I was so proud of the whole cast, who all grew in confidence and skill as the rehearsal process progressed.
Learning so many lines in a completely different language was an exciting challenge for us all, and certainly a rewarding one. The amount of complex German that we had to memorise was enormous, and was very useful in helping develop our grammar and fluency. It took a lot of work to make sure we sounded as German as possible, but it certainly paid off, and the skills I have learned to help my pronunciation will be invaluable as I take my German forward. Altogether, the play was an amazing experience, and one I will certainly never forget!