Sasha Marianna Salzmann to deliver speech in honour of Serhiy Zhadan

© Vera Tammen

Sasha Marianna Salzmann, author, theatre-maker and curator, will deliver the official speech honouring Serhiy Zhadan, this year’s recipient of the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade. The award ceremony will take place in the context of the Frankfurt Book Fair on Sunday 23 October 2022 at 10.45 am at the Church of St. Paul in Frankfurt. The event will also be broadcast live on German television (ARD).

Sasha Marianna Salzmann, born in 1985 in Volgograd (Russia), grew up in Moscow and came to Germany in 1995. Salzmann studied literature, theatre and media in Hildesheim and scenic writing at the Berlin University of the Arts. In 2002, Salzmann was one of the co-founders of the culture and society magazine “freitext” and co-edited it for eleven years. In 2013 Salzmann became an in-house writer at the Maxim Gorki Theater Berlin and in the same year took over the artistic direction of STUDIO Я until 2015. Together with Max Czollek, Salzmann initiated as curators the Disintegration Congress in 2016 and the Radical Jewish Culture Days at the Maxim Gorki Theater in 2017. In 2017/2018, Salzmann was also part of the leadership team of the literary workshop "War in Peace" at the Literary Colloquium Berlin.

Salzmann's debut novel "Außer sich" (Suhrkamp Verlag) was shortlisted for the German Book Prize 2017. It tells the story of Alissa, who embarks on a search in Istanbul's queer scene and in her own family history: for her missing twin brother and for her belonging beyond origin, mother tongue or gender. Salzmann's second novel, "Im Menschen muss alles herrlich sein", published in 2021 and again nominated for the German Book Prize, is set in the late, disintegrating Soviet Union, in Ukraine during the perestroika years, and in present-day Germany. It deals with the indissoluble entanglement of two generations of women across political upheavals and emigration.

In her own work, Salzmann repeatedly refers to the texts of Serhiy Zhadan, who is one of the author's literary examples. 

The two novels as well as Salzmann's internationally performed plays have received several awards, including the Mara Cassens Prize (2017), the Nestroy Theatre Prize (2018) and the Berlin Art Prize (2020). In 2020, the author received the Ricarda Huch Poetics Lectureship for "Gender in the Literary World", and in 2022 the Prize of the Houses of Literature. 

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