Cowboys roam through an abandoned amusement park in the desert just outside Heidelberg: a leftover Wild West fantasy for gunslingers and recreational bandits. Where androids once lived out fantasies of longing, they now wonder what will remain when they can only talk about humans.
Based on motifs from the film »Westworld« by Michael Crichton (1973) and the television series of the same name (2016), the development of the play examines how science fiction narratives can negotiate possible futures today. And who actually distributes the roles in the Wild West?

»Restworld« is the first work of the Frankfurt duo F. Wiesel at the Theater und Orchester Heidelberg and their second collaboration with the author and journalist Dietmar Dath. In F. Wiesel's works, figure and object theater as well as the use of analog film animation technology form a focal point.

» JU: We have already been here.

HA: We have been here all the time. You argue that the only beings who can be role models for us, because they also program themselves, are humans. So we're supposed to play human in order to figure out where the similarities and the differences lie, and wether there may be something we could really do differently, new. And so on.

LA: No just "and so on". Don't stand like that, stand up and let's go. Where were we? «

Dietmar Dath. RESTWORLD

Play by: Dietmar Dath and F. Wiesel
Direction, concept and stage: Hanke Wilsmann, Jost von Harleßem
Puppeteer: Cali Kühner
Costumes: Naomi Kean
Sound Design: Rupert Jaud
Dramaturgy Michael Letmathe
Theater Pedagogy: Jeremy Heiß
with Sandra Bezler, Leon Maria Spiegelberg, Hendrik Richter, Jost von Harleßem, Cali Kobel

Premiere: 15. Oktober 2021 | Theater und Orchester Heidelberg Zwinger 1
06. Juli 2022 – 25. Baden-Württembergischen Theatertage, Heilbronn

“Welcome to Restworld”: 19.-21. November 2021 Atelierfrankfurt e.V.

"Instead of focusing on equality - the desirable vision in Dietmar Dath's political worldview - people become murderers. Naomi Kean's costumes quote cowboy dreams. Actors Hendrik Richter and Leon Maria Spiegelberg not only engage in merciless duels. They cleverly shatter the familiar myths of Wild West films. Together with Sandra Bezler, they embody the memory of a past reality: "We are gunslingers. That's the design." In F. Wiesel's multimedia project, the machines take over. Dath and the collective find strong aesthetic images for this process. [...]
F. Wiesel translates Dath's political philosophy into a visual concept that transcends the boundaries of language. [...] The ensemble joyfully engages in the synthesis between acting and technology. "Restworld" shows the limits of progress, at the end of which could be destruction - or a new world in which humans integrate artificial intelligence into new models of society. "

Elisabeth Maier, / 18.10.2021

"[...] Now good news follow from Heidelberg: Dath gave his text, based on Michael Crichton's film and series "Westworld" (1973/2016), into the hands of the resourceful collective F. Wiesel, in which Jost von Harleßem and Hanke Wilsmann design original formats for figure and object theater. In their concept, the combination of acting, video technology, installation, puppetry, media and robotics fit perfectly into Dath's multi-layered text. [...] Between Buffalo Bill, Paintball, Laserdrom and Disneyland, five agile and different protagonists argue, charge, repair and duel. [...] Conclusion: Ninety atmospheric as well as cleverly entertaining minutes of theater, which finally reap great cheers."

 Ralf-Carl Langhals, Mannheimer Morgen, 18.10.2021

“Western trifft Science Fiction: Basierend auf dem Film und der Serie “Westworld” fragt das Stück “Restworld”, wer eigentlich wen braucht: der Mensch den Roboter – oder umgekehrt? […] Ein so anregender wie herausfordernder Abend, der in rascher Folge philosophische Fragen aufwirft.
Die Technologie-Dystopie, Dietmar Dath und F. Wiesel (auch Regie und Bühne) treiben sie auf die Spitze: In ihrer Vision einer zukünftigen Welt ist der Klimawandel weit fortgeschritten, die Erde größtenteils überflutet oder Wüste – und die Menschen sind verschwunden. Zurückgeblieben sind nur die Roboter, die sich daran erinnern, wie das damals gewesen ist mit den Menschen und die versuchen, sich weiterzuentwickeln. […]
Was ihnen gemein ist: Weil sie so programmiert sind, dass sie Vergangenheit, Gegenwart und Zukunft in einem Punkt zusammendenken, sind sie gefangen in der Hölle eines permanenten Déjà-vus. Immer, wenn sie denken, sie machen Fortschritte, müssen sie feststellen: “Das hatten wir doch schon.” Man könnte glatt Mitleid mit diesen Maschinen haben.”

Christopher Feil, Theater und Orchester Heidelberg zeigen “Restworld” bei den Theatertagen in Heilbronn, 7.07.2022

A production of the Theater und Orchester Heidelberg.