In a virtually unprecedented move, the Oberammergau Passion Play will be postponed for two years as the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage around the world.
Organisers sought to blame the delay on the administrative district office of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which earlier prohibited the performance.
The first performance had been scheduled for May 16th, but will now take place in 2022.
The world-famous Passion Play goes back to a vow made in 1633.
At that time, the people of Oberammergau vowed to perform the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ every ten years if no one else died of the plague.
The people of Oberammergau still want to fulfil this vow – despite nearly 50 deaths in Germany from coronavirus.
Therefore, plans to perform the Passion Play in 2022 are now being put in place.
The premiere is scheduled for May 21st that year, with further performance dates to be announced in due course.
In the past there have been postponements or even cancellations of the Passion Play – though not many.
In 1770 the play could not take place due to a general ban, while in 1940 the Second World War prevented a performance.
For the 1920 Passion Play, the municipal council decided not to press ahead with preparations in view of the large number of World War I casualties.
However, it did then take in 1922.
Tickets for 2020 performances can be transferred to 2022, or full refunds will be offered.
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