Since the middle of the '90s the unique programming concept of the Renaissance Theatre has dedicated itself to international contemporary drama. A visitor to the house - J.W. Preuß, one of the most profound cognoscenti of the Berlin theatre scene - called it "the most ambitious privately-run theatre in Germany", considering the programme which on the one hand engages with the latest social developments and on the other challenges and moves its audiences emotions.
Alongside the main productions, there are readings and events such as the 'Literary Forays' in which biographies and newly published works are introduced and there is a musical literary programme in the Bruckner Foyer.
The Renaissance Theatre productions are widely regarded outside Berlin by public and media alike. The broad national attention is in part thanks to the house's extensive hosting of touring productions from the entire German-speaking world and its coproductions and exchanges in partnership with private and municipal theatres.
International prize-winning authors who have had successes in New York, London, Paris or Amsterdam entrust the Renaissance Theatre with their premieres in German. Here their pieces are accorded the value they deserve as the work of notable dramatists and are incorporated by prominent actors and directed as the work demands. The unique context of this work is the only Art Deco theatre to remain entirely untouched, looking back over its moving history.
The building was first erected in 1901/02 and served as a club house, military hospital and cinema before being transformed into a theatre by the young Viennese author Theodor Tagger who would later become one of the most important authors of the Weimar Republic under the pseudonym Ferdinand Bruckner. In 1926 the theatre architect Oskar Kaufmann began to rebuild the house. Just five months later, on 8th January 1927, the Renaissance Theatre was reopened and has been acclaimed a "jewel of theatre architecture" ever since. The facade boasts coloured glass and an illuminated sign while the interior has Kaufmann's typically grand Art Deco variant of 'Expressionist Rococo'. The wall decoration around the dress circle feature delicately engraved inlays by the artist César Klein with scenes from the Commedia dell'Arte and Antoine Watteau's "Fêtes Galantes".