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Waldemar Kamer
Waldemar Kamer
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Biography

Waldemar Kamer was born on January the 6th 1966 at Enschede (Netherlands) where his German mother, a harpist, played in the opera orchestra. He moves to Brussels when his father, a Dutch journalist, becomes the Brussels correspondent for the German weekly Der Spiegel. Waldemar has thus a double nationality, and is educated in a European milieu. He speaks five languages fluently.

Because the address of this website is in Paris, it is mainly written in French. But many of its documents are in other languages. Newspaper articles, interviews and radio broadcasts are mostly in German, some articles and a book are in Dutch, some show reviews and a production note in Italian and a short novel in English.

Theatre and Cinema

Théâtre et Cinéma

W. K. arrives in Paris in 1984 to study Art History at the Sorbonne ; his interests gradually move towards the theatre. He writes a masters dissertation on the theatre director Peter Brook and studies drama with Danièle Ajoret and Jean Périmony. After his debuts as a theatre and cinema actor, he founds his own theatre company with Max Denes. Together, with other directors, he is invited to produce many shows in French and European festivals (TransEurope Berlin Festival, Montepulciano International Art Festival, Paris Summer Quarter and the Avignon Festival).

Slideshow with photos of W. K. as a theatre and film actor.

Opera Productions

Mise en scène d'Operas

Opera eventually replaces the theatre in W.K.’s life thanks to Ursel and Karl-Ernst Herrmann, whose assistant he becomes in Brussels, Vienna and Salzburg. His first opera production, Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice (Netherlands, 1996), is reproduced in Bordeaux. His production of Bellini’s La Sonnambula in Lausanne is invited to Lisbon, Bordeaux, Como, Cremona, Pavia and Avignon. The Dutch press considered his Aida by Verdi as “The most convincing Aida of the last quarter century”. He produces Massenet’s Cendrillon at the Chemnitz opera (and provides the German translation) and Edouard Lacamp’s Marianne, an opera inspired by current political events in France (the “Elf affair”), at Saint Etienne. The production is captured by television and regularly rediffused.

For each opera, there is a slideshow with photos of the production, a synopsis, musical excerpts, casting, extracts from press reviews and production notes (in French).

Possibility to read certain critiques also in their original language :
- in German for Orfeo ed Euridice, Cendrillon and Marianne
- in Italian for La Sonnambula
- in Dutch for Aida

Journalism

Journalisme

Since 1988, Waldemar Kamer is an art critic for the German, Flemish and French radios (Bayerischer Rundfunk, VRT and Radio France Internationale). He becomes the Paris cultural correspondent for several German daily papers (Berliner Morgenpost, Hamburger Abendblatt, Saarbrücker Zeitung) and the weekly Focus. He writes for art, theatre and opera magazines in four countries and, since 1991, publishes a “letter from Paris” in Tableau Fine Arts, the main art magazine in the Netherlands. He has also produced documentaries for ARTE.

Slideshow with photos of W.K.’s interviews for daily papers (“quotidiens”), weeklies (“hebdomadaires”), art theatre and opera reviews (“revues d’art, de théâtre et d’opéra” ), radio and television.

Possibility to read a selection of articles and interviews :

- Interviews for the German weekly Focus :
Pierre Boulez, composer and conductor
Catherine David, commissioner for the Kassel Documenta
Philippe Douste-Blazy, French minister for culture
Hugues Gall, director of the Paris Opera
Peter Greenaway, film-maker, in Geneva and in Munich
Jack Lang, ex-minister for culture
Stéphane Lissner, director of the Châtelet theatre in Paris
Marc Minkowski, conductor in Salzburg
Jacques Toubon, French minister for culture
Eva Wagner, director of the Bayreuth festival


- Several “Pariser Streifzüge” for the German daily Saarbrücker Zeitung

- Some “Letters from Paris” for the Dutch art magazine Tableau Fine Arts

- Possibility to listen to broadcasts from Radio France Internationale :
Cultural life in Paris and France, the theatre festival at Avignon, the opera festival at Salzburg and a quiz on a mysterious lady.

Lectures and conferences

Lectures et conférences

Waldemar Kamer is regularly invited to give lectures and organize conferences on art and its possibilities to unite different cultures. His subjects concern theatre, opera, visual arts, “history of thought”, art history and philosophy (“the poetry of peace”, “Goethe and France”, “mysticism in the Rhine valley”). For these conferences he frequently collaborates with actors and musicians.

Possibility of listening to a lecture: W.K. reads  “the death of Faust” (Goethe) at the funeral service of Rudolf Nureyev.

Books

Livres

For the past thirty years, Waldemar Kamer has been writing a family chronicle.
Recently, an editor has commissioned a book on the people he has met in Paris over the past twenty years : from the neighbours of his first maid’s room, to students, people from the theatre and opera world – many people alone in the shadow of the great city, and some in the lights (but no less alone) : Arletty, Marlene Dietrich and Rudolf Nureyev.

Possibility of “viewing”  these books (in PDF). Link to an article explaining the genesis of the family chronicle and an English summary of the book “Under The Roofs of Paris – Encounters”. And, at the end, as a “bonus” to the English-speaking readers, a short story (more a reminiscence): “Things will never be the same again”.

Listen to an interview

In which Waldemar Kamer explains his artistic progression.
(Short version of an hour long interview with Françoise Dentinger on Radio France Internationale, 6th October 2002, 24 min., in German)
Aucun extrait sélectionné.
Click here to listen to the interview

 


Link to the chapter 'Books' (in English)