Louche Theatre present the World Premiere of a new play by Tom Francis……..
THE TRIAL OF HERMANN ETHÉ
It’s 1914, and Professor Hermann Ethé and his wife Harriet are living a happy, bohemian life in Aberystwyth. But as the First World War unfolds tragically in Europe, fear and panic take hold at home. Whipped-up into a frenzy of hatred and prejudice, a violent mob decides that this German academic and his free-spirited wife are no longer welcome in the town. Driven from his work, his friends, and his home of forty years, Hermann grows increasingly dependent on his young wife. Together they must fight to ensure that they, and their marriage, can survive.
On Wednesday 14th October, with reports of atrocities in Belgium, anti-German sentiments are running high. Dr Ethé and his English born wife, Harriet, returned to the town from a holiday in Germany.
On Thursday 15th October a crowd of nearly 3000 local people, led by Enoch Davies, a commercial traveller, marched up the hill towards Caradoc Road and forced open a window of Dr Ethe’s house, and – the professor being out of the house - harangued the professor’s wife. Despite her pleas that her husband had been granted a British Passport, and that she had a brother fighting the Germans, the crowd wasn’t satisfied. Dr and Mrs Ethé must get out, or they would tear down the house stone by stone.
Dr Ethé left that very night, never to return. After staying with his wife’s family in Reading the couple moved to Clifton, near Bristol. The College did all in their power to support Hermann Ethé, but they were powerless to resist vindictive calls to stop the lecturer’s pension (even one of his former students turned on him). This respected scholar died in 1917, broken and in poverty.
Friday April 17th to Sunday April 19th at 7.30pm plus matinees on Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th at 2.30pm at the MORLAN CENTRE, QUEENS ROAD, ABERYSTWYTH SY23 2HH followed by a short tour of west Wales. The production then transfers to Greenside Theatre, venue 209, on Monday 10th August for one week as part of the 2015 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Tickets for all performances in Wales can be booked by calling the Louche Theatre Box Office on 01970 612617 and for Edinburgh performances call the Fringe Box Office on 0131 226 0000