Launched in 1922 as an antidote to the horrors of the First World War, the grand Café Schindler became the whirling social centre of Innsbruck. And then the Nazis arrived.

When Meriel Schindler’s father Kurt died in 2017, she felt compelled to solve the mysteries he had left behind.  Kurt had made extravagant claims about their family history. Were they really related to Franz Kafka and Oscar Schindler, of Schindler's List fame? Or Hitler's Jewish doctor – Dr Bloch? Starting with a tower of photos and papers found in Kurt's isolated cottage, she pieced together a unique story taking in two centuries, two world wars and a family business: the famous Café Schindler.

Meticulously researched and highly moving, The Lost Café Schindler uses the story of the Café Schindler and the threads that spool out from it to weave together memoir, family history and the untold story of the Jews of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It explores the restorative power of writing, and offers readers a profound reflection on memory, truth, trauma and the importance of cake.

Chaired by Sheilagh Matheson

 

'Rigorously researched, The Lost Café Schindler successfully weaves together a compelling and at times deeply moving memoir and family history that also chronicles the wider story of the Jews of the Austro-Hungarian Empire...' The TimesT2

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Booking Information

  • Priority Booking for Festival Friends opens at 08.00 on Tuesday 19th April. Tickets go on general sale from Thursday 21st April. 
  • Please note that a handling charge of 50p per ticket applies to bookings made in person or over the phone. No handling charges apply to online bookings.
  • Hearing loops are available.  Carers qualify for free ‘essential companion’ tickets. Wheelchair spaces are limited. In all cases, please call the Box Office on 01434 652477 to book (booking fees will not apply).