Reading and Discussion: August Schmölzer (Austrian Writer and Actor)

Wednesday, October 26, 2016
2:00-3:15 pm, German Conference Room (NCH 236)

The Center for German Studies, in collaboration with the Austrian Cultural Forum in Washington, DC, proudly presents the Austrian actor and author August Schmölzer who reads from and discusses his first novel The Gravedigger in the Boxwood Tree.

The book centers on Josef, a lonely gravedigger, who comes back to the mountain town of his childhood after many years. During his youth, the war had led him to the neighboring town by the sea, where he worked as a war photographer. Since then, he has been haunted by the look of a little boy, Michael, who got shot in front of his eyes. On his way back home, Josef suddenly starts to talk with Michael. Through their continuous dialogue, Josef passes in review the story of his life. Progressively, he liberates himself from the past and finds the courage to start new again. Opening his heart to Ragusa, his old flame, Josef finally accesses to inner peace and happiness at the end of his life.

August Schmölzer was born in 1958 in Austria. He is known as an actor for his roles in Schindler’s List and also in many other movies and TV films such as The Chinese Man based on the novel by H. Mankell. The Gravedigger in the Boxwood Tree is the first novel of August Schmölzer. His writing style is vigorous and varied like the landscape of his home country.

Reading and discussion in German; the event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact: Manuela Achilles, ma6cq@virginia.edu