Although the stock market gets far more attention from the general public, the heart of the financial system is the in the Bond markets. Credit and debt are the engines of today's economies Your credit rating determines your worth as a person. Microfinance and Microcredit are seen as keys to reducing poverty. The Asian financial crisis of 1997 was caused by the lending practices of The International Monetary Fund, which triggered a crisis in Brazil. The savings rate of Americans is less than zero. German bankruptcies have tripled in the last three years. And all stock market bubbles have been blown up with borrowed money.

LOAN SHARK is a piece about credit and debt and the traces it leaves in today's world. These traces wind through and across the personal, the corporate, the national and the international levels of society.

LOAN SHARK will be a theatrical economy play in 4 parts containing a live re-editing of the 1956' movie LOAN SHARK:
1) Loan Shark - about dept, savers and investors and the system of money creation
2) The price of money - about interest and currency exchange
3) You get what you deserve - about worth (Würdigkeit) in the financial world
4) Whoever drinks on credit gets twice as drunk - about bankruptcy

LOAN SHARK will turn the audience during the performance into Creditors, Bond Traders, lending the American Government Money by buying US Treasury Bonds during the show, or by taking a risk and buying high-yielding Corporate Junk Bonds. This will be done live via the Internet using the Box Office Money of that evening from the audience as start capital.


LOAN SHARK will turn the audience into potential debtors, borrowers. First we will check our credit rating on line to see if we are worthy of credit. Then we will attempt on line to apply for credit cards and bank loans.

These two structural parts will be repeated using the money we’ve applied for from the “SOFORT KREDIT” websites to buy more bonds, building up our empire of credit and debt.

As we make our purchases, the effects of interest rates, will become apparent. Experts on video will appear, explaining for example how interest rates are affected by unemployment rates, and how to make money by borrowing Japanese Yen and using the money to buy American Bonds.
Once the empire is built to a dizzying height the third part of LOAN SHARK will start: crisis and bankruptcy. We will start Bankruptcy proceedings, explaining why we can’t pay the money back and start asking for a deal.

We expect LOAN SHARK, credit, debt, and crisis to be entertaining However the main thrust of the evening will not be the purchasing of bonds and the applying for credit in themselves. Rather these will be tools to show family resemblances between personal, corporate, national, and international forms of credit and debt in order to make the whole more visible.

Concept: Chris Kondek
Team: Chris Kondek, Philipp Hochleichter

LOAN SHARK takes places in the framework of PALAST DER PROJEKTE and will perform in mid April at the HAU3 in Berlin.
If you want you can write us an email.
And here you can see Milton Friedman explain the market.