Gerhard Polt celebrates his 80th birthday – “Humor is something deeply political”

Updated on 07/05/2022 at 10:12 a.m.

  • Gerhard Polt is one of the country’s most sought-after cabaret artists and has mastered the art of going to the heart of human abysses.
  • On May 7, he will turn 80 – but of course he is not thinking of retiring.
  • From May he will be on tour again and there are already new books.

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For almost half a century, Gerhard Polt has been making his fans laugh – who both like to grab their throats and hiccup between consternation and amusement. The cabaret artist keenly observes the human abyss and enters it with innocent malice. On May 7, the cabaretist, filmmaker, author and winner of dozens of awards will celebrate his 80th birthday.

Giving up is of course not a problem. “Dieter Hildebrandt always said, ‘We are sex offenders’.” He just likes to carry on. So Polt is always on stage, on the microphone, in front of the camera. He just implemented a bizarre idea of ​​his son Martin for Servus TV: Gerhard Polt, Gisela Schneeberger and others dubbed the Japanese soap opera “Hanbun, Aoi” in an idiosyncratic rendition – in Bavarian and other dialects, under the title “Die Vroni aus Kawasaki”. .

Polt: Humor is also necessary in times of war

What exactly humor is, can and love pole do not say: I do not know. You’ll have to ask someone else for that. But of course it deals with the issue. For four years, we have been trying to “Funny Forum” put in place to move the subject forward. The capacity for irony is one of the weakest characteristics in man. Humor can play a role in this cement of society beif he is there. Humor is something deeply political.”. It can also help, comfort and distract in difficult situations. When the humor stops, we are not far from brutality or barbarism.

And the hard times are pole really not extraterrestrial. In an interview with the German Press Agency, he recently explained how the war in Ukraine brings up memories of his childhood.This is a depressing affair for me personally, which affects me personally very muchlike that pole. And further:”I walked through ruins. Then I see these images and all these associations come back to me. Among other things, he remembers a facade of a house that collapsed and buried children underneath.

It is therefore not surprising that the cabaret artist was one of the first to sign the initiative initiated by publicist Alice Schwarzer. to open Letters to Chancellor Olaf Scholz and warning about a third party world War. The signatories are in no way calling for the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine and thus giving Vladimir Putin as little incentive as possible to escalate the war.

But humor is also allowed in times of war, if not more than necessary. In an interview with the New Press from Passau mentioned pole: This is useful to poor dogs in Ukraine at all nothingif one of us doesn’t laugh.”. Humor can also be a comfort, but also a distraction and a way to accept when you can’t cope with a situation.

Crudeness in the choice of words: Gerhard Polt turns the intimate of the people outwards

From May he will be on tour with the Well brothers from the extended family of musicians who once caused a stir as Biermösl Blosn in Bavaria. Rehearsals at the Kammerspiele will start in December – details not yet available. It’s a difficult subject, he said. “It’s basically a very sad and dreary thing, try to tell it in a way that’s bearable.” Presumably with its own irony, which always allows us to look deep into the human soul.

New books have also been published, one with his decades-old interviews, in another Polt makes fun of a privateer from Tegernsee. More recent Polts followers can be found on his website. On the garden fence in front of a country setting, it presents the gossip of the small world at home – and reflects the big one there. Gerhard Polt loves “small spaces”, as he once called them. The big picture emerges.

Polt’s characters, it is the common thing, are not inventions: there is the broker, the father of the family, Saint Nicholas – and the pope. Anni, Erwin. You meet them on the street, in the supermarket – and also when you look at yourself in the bathroom mirror. Often rude in his choice of words and peppered with Bavarian swear words, Polt subtly turns people’s innermost beings outward.

“Almost like in real life” made Polt known throughout Germany

“Almost like in real life” – this means: like in real life. Just a little sharp. The broadcast of the twelve-part ARD series of the same name with Schneeberger and Hanns Christian Müller brought Polt to prominence in the 1980s.

Born in Munich, he grew up – baptized as a Protestant and then confirmed as a Catholic – sometimes in strictly Catholic Altötting. After graduating from high school, he studied in Munich and later in Gothenburg and lived in Sweden for a few years. Back in Munich, Polt worked as a translator, teacher and interpreter.

In 1976 he performed for the first time in Munich with a cabaret program. This was followed by appearances in Berlin and in Dieter Hildebrandt’s TV “windshield wiper”. For a biting satire on the controversial construction of the Rhine-Main-Danube Canal, which upset the CSU’s “superfather”, Franz Josef Strauss, he was awarded the silver Grimme Prize.

Polt also spends his birthday on stage

Sometimes a long silence instead of a speech of thanks like during the German cabaret award ceremony in 1980, sometimes a disgusting story about lung mucus floating in the beer mug during the official presentation of the mug of the Oktoberfest: Polt is unpredictable. It also skillfully lays bare a breach of convention.

Married since 1971, Polt lives in Schliersee in Upper Bavaria – and partly in Italy. He has an adult son and is now a grandfather. Polt will spend his birthday on stage. “The Munich Kammerspiele invited us. He ‘went on stage’ and ‘did something’. (dpa/dh)

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