Each week our Arts.21 reporters scour Germany's cultural scene and present you with a selection of their best finds.
"Elisabeth", Musical by Michael Kunze
An Austrian empress is taking Shanghai by storm. "Elisabeth" is the biggest German-language musical of all time, and now it's come to China. The musical tells the story of Empress Elisabeth - better known as Sissi. It's a story of love, passion, and intrigue. Sissi's tragic life still fascinates audiences, more than a century after her death. Harry Kupfer directed the original production in 1992. The opera director has made a few changes for China. It's been translated into ten languages - and has been seen by more than ten million people. Before it came to China, "Elisabeth" thrilled audiences in Japan and South Korea.
"German Pop", Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt
Colorful, ironic, sexy - that was German pop art. A brash artistic era in West Germany in the 1960s. It was rebellious and witty. And now there's a comprehensive show dedicated to the artists of that time. Pop art originated in the US and Britain. But the Schirn museum in Frankfurt shows what German artists made of it. It was critical of the consumer lifestyle. Many artists fell into obscurity - but there were big names involved, like Gerhard Richter - and Sigmar Polke. Compared to the US, German pop art was only a short-lived phenomenon. The Frankfurt show sheds new light on many of its forgotten artists.
"Tschick", most perfomed play of 2014
It's an adventurous story about young runaways. In 2014, "Tschick" was the play most performed on German stages - even ahead of plays by Goethe and Schiller! Tschick has been a huge success both on stage and as a novel. Sadly, its author Wolfgang Herrndorf isn't around to see it. He had incurable brain cancer - and took his own life in 2013. It's hilarious - but also profound. Tschick is about rootlessness, of growing up, of the longing for freedom and love.