A Storybook for Lovers
Claudia Michelsen and Wolfram Koch
read Kurt Tucholsky
arranged by Gerhard Ahrens
Rheinsberg is Kurt Tucholsky’s first novel. The Storybook for Lovers, which later on served as a ‘love manual for generations’, according to the author himself, was inspired by a trip to Rheinsberg which Kurt Tucholsky undertook in late August 1911 with his ‘leading girlfriend’ Else Weil. The 22-year-old law student couldn’t resist the inclusion of a few political sideswipes in his story, although a carefree tone generally prevails. Its protagonists, the lovers Claire and Wolfgang, play with language the way others play with juggling balls. Tucholsky does not abandon the casual, ironic tone in which he elegantly mixes colloquial with formal language and naivety with profoundness when it comes to existential questions.
Much later, in 1931, under the shadow of completely different omens, Tucholsky revisited the holiday theme with his novel Castle Gripsholm. A Summer Story. At that point, he had long since left Germany for Sweden. The Nazis burned his books in 1933; Kurt Tucholsky was born to Jewish parents in Berlin in 1890 and was well-known for the critical books and articles he published at the time of the Weimar Republic. He took a fatal overdose of tablets and died in exile in Gothenburg in 1935.
Claudia Michelsen has gradually achieved an extraordinary level of presence in films, including works by Jean-Luc Godard, Hermine Huntgeburth and Christian Schwochow. She has starred as one of the Magdeburg-based detectives in the popular long-running TV crime series Polizeiruf 110 since 2013. In the 1990s, she was a member of the cast of the Volksbühne theatre in Berlin, where she worked with, for example, Heiner Müller, Frank Castorf and Christoph Marthaler.
Wolfram Koch first appeared in a movie at the age of 13 in The Clown, but concentrated on the theatre afterwards: he became a member of the Schauspielhaus Bochum company and now performs in theatres such as the Volksbühne and the Deutsches Theater in Berlin and Schauspielhaus Zurich. Wolfram Koch has also appeared in films, including Summer Outside (2012) and King Ordinary(2013). On TV, he has played the role of a detective in the Frankfurt-based episodes of the long-running television crime series Tatort since 2014.
A Storybook for Lovers
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