Ilya Richter

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Ilja Richter after a reading in Berlin , 2019

Ilja Richter (born November 24, 1952 in Berlin-Karlshorst ) is a German actor , voice actor , singer , author and stage director.


Ilja Richter was born as the third child of Eva and Georg Richter in Berlin-Karlshorst. They named the son after Ilja Ehrenburg . The father was a communist at the time , the Jewish mother had survived the time of National Socialism with a forged “ Aryan identity ” . His father spent nine and a half years in the penitentiary and concentration camp during the Nazi era. After the family got into political difficulties in the GDR , they moved to West Berlin in 1953 . The parents leased a restaurant there. In 1955 Ilya's sister Janina was born and in 1959 the family moved to Cologne . The Richters also ran a restaurant there, but moved back to West Berlin in 1960, where they opened a guesthouse on Lietzenburger Strasse . The mother, a former actress, brought Ilya to audition for the SFB .

Ilja Richter was in a relationship with the singer Marianne Rosenberg from 1975 to 1978 . From 1995 to 1997 he was married to the film editor Stephanie von Falkenhausen. His son (* 2001) comes from a relationship with a French make-up artist. Ilja Richter lives with his German partner in Berlin-Pankow and sometimes in his second home in Mecklenburg .

The television film God and the World. Crossing borders with Ilja Richter documents Ilja Richter's complicated confrontation with Judaism . Richter does not belong to any religious community, but professes spiritual inclinations.


The RIAS , a West Berlin radio station, hired the talented speaker and singer when he was eight. His first speaking role was the "Mäuschen Kukuruz" in the radio play Black on White by Ephraim Kishon , in the television adaptation of which he was seen in 1963 alongside Edith Hancke . A child star was discovered who subsequently took part in over 60 RIAS radio plays and was recommended to the Berlin theaters for children's roles.

Ilja Richter got his first stage role in 1961 in Belvedere at the Berlin Renaissance Theater with Viktor de Kowa in the leading role. He attended a private school. In 1963 he took on a small role in the musical Annie Get Your Gun at the Theater des Westens . Heidi Brühl played the main role . In 1966 he appeared with Vico Torriani - also in the Theater des Westens - in the Singspiel Im Weisse Rößl . His talent received a lot of attention when he played Friends and Enemies as partner of Martin Held in the two-person play in 1966 .

In 1967 Richter played in the ZDF television series Till, the boy next door . So he is in the ZDF chronicle, since the station started operating in 1963, at the age of 14, probably the earliest acting career of the Mainz company. At the age of 16, he took over the co-moderation of the music program 4-3-2-1 Hot & Sweet on ZDF from February 1969 (together with Suzanne Doucet ) and thus also became Germany's youngest TV presenter and show author. It should be the response of the ZDF on the Beat-Club of ARD be. One difference to the style of the Beat Club was that Ilja Richter - in clear contrast to the way young people dressed at the time - often appeared in a jacket with a tie and crease trousers. The film was shot in Berlin. From 1970 Richter moderated the music show alone.

On February 13, 1971 it became a disco . Richter's sayings ("Lights out! Whoom! Spot on! Yeah ...!") Became popular words . Disco achieved high ratings. Because of its success, the show was soon on the evening program.

The extraordinary thing about the show was that performers from completely different styles of music (Schlager, Pop, Rock) performed one after the other. In between the musical performances, pre-recorded skits were played in which Ilja Richter, as a clear enthusiast of the operetta , often overemphasized and with affected body language, mostly presented predictable puns.

Other voices as a contrast to Wiebke Brauer rate style and form from the point of view of the time. According to this, Richter's acting performance is to be understood and evaluated in a completely different context. Edo Reents, editor in charge of the features section of the Frankfurter Allgemeine , wrote:

“You were actually only interested in the vocal contributions and mostly just accepted the 'plot' as an annoying evil. At the “Disco” this action consisted of self-written, acted, spoken and also sung contributions by the moderator Ilja Richter - mostly cluttered things that seemed closer to the spirit of Grandpa's television than, let's say, “Klimbim”. But it just seemed that way. Today, forty years after the show hosted by an initially eighteen-year-old [...] one has to say that Richter's acting performances alone, which one looked down on at the time in ignorance of the talent requirements involved, are worth seeing again. "

Richter stayed with Disco for a total of eleven years. On November 22, 1982, two days before Richter's 30th birthday, the format was discontinued by mutual agreement. In 1997, Disco was parodied in the 100th episode of Kalkofe's screen at Premiere .

In 1978 Richter and actress Ursela Monn produced the album Riekes Jesänge with Berlin chansons.

Richter hosted a 60-minute television show called The Music Palette in 1981 , of which there were no further editions. After that he worked as an actor and director . He started with the Berlin comedy Treppauf – Treppab and went on tour with this piece in the autumn of 1983, where it was recorded for television and broadcast in 1984. His best-known appearance was the one-person play The Announcer of a Striptease Number Does Not Give Up by Bodo Kirchhoff , directed by Detlef Altenbeck . For a while Richter was a member of the ensemble of the Bremen theater . As a woodworm in the opera , he created opera retellings with the Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft .

From 1985 to 1987 he was a columnist for taz and the Hamburger Morgenpost .

Richter also works as a voice actor, especially for cartoons. The best-known characters he lent his voice to include the meerkat Timon from the Disney film The Lion King , Count Duckula from the cartoon series of the same name and Mike Glotzkowski from the Disney films Die Monster AG and Die Monster Uni .

In addition to his autobiography (Spot off! Lights on!) Ilja Richter published the book Der Deutschen Jude , in which he and his mother ironically deal with German-Jewish history. His book Bruno - von Bären und Menschen (September 2007), also published as an audio book, is a parable about the "problem bear " Bruno who was shot in 2006 . On May 8, 2013, he published You Can't Always Be 60. Get older with a smile .

In 2011 the ZDF disco had its 40th anniversary, Ilja Richter went on a “disco tour”. On the occasion of the anniversary, Sony Music released several CDs and DVDs, some of which were in the charts. In addition, Ilja and his son Kolja produced the children's record The Little Snail . In 2012 Richter said goodbye to his disco fans with “The last disco tour” and has since devoted himself as always to his main job as a stage actor.



Film synchronization

Theater and musicals

Ilja Richter rehearsing his play Indian Summer at the Munich Volkstheater , 1998
  • 1961: Belvedere
  • 1962: Pedestrians in the Air
  • 1966: friends and enemies
  • 1967: In the White Horse Inn
  • 1982: up and down stairs
  • 1983: Sweet Charity
  • 1984: How to become something in life without making an effort
  • 1984: Pure madness
  • 1985: My friend Harvey
  • 1985: Don't panic
  • 1987: Chief Abendwind ... as a hairdresser
  • 1987: There is a designer in his sleep
  • 1988: moments for enemies and friends
  • 1990: Minions bring luck
  • 1990: The Seagull ... as Medvedenko
  • 1992: Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy
  • 1992: The pants
  • 1992: Stepping Out
  • 1993: let's finally get started
  • 1995: The announcer of a striptease number does not give up - Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus
  • 1996: The cryptogram - Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus
  • 1997: As in ancient Rome - Theater des Westens , Berlin
  • 1998: The Black Rider - Renaissance Theater Berlin and Bad Hersfeld Festival ... as a devil
  • 1998: Indian Summer - Munich Volkstheater
  • 2000/2001: Chicago - Theater des Westens, Berlin ... as Amos Hart
  • 2001: The Snob - Westphalian State Theater
  • 2001/2002: Murder on Prescription - Small Comedy at Max II, Munich and Theater am Kurfürstendamm , Berlin ... as Dr. Flemming
  • 2003–2005: Gala Night - Comedy at the Winterhuder Fährhaus, Hamburg
  • 2003–2006: My fair lady - tour ... as Prof. Henry Higgins
  • 2004: Hohner - the musical - Trossingen ... as liquidator
  • 2004/2005: Pinkelstadt - the musical ... as becoming more of added value
  • 2005: Jedermann - Ital-Reding-Hofstadt, Switzerland and in the Berlin Cathedral ... as Mammon
  • 2006: You don't even have to get crazy people in the mood - tour
  • 2006–2008: Monsieur Ibrahim and the Flowers of the Koran - Tour ... as Momo
  • 2007: Monsieur Ibrahim and the flowers of the Koran - Ernst-Deutsch-Theater Hamburg ... all roles
  • 2007: Blatt Schuss (Düsseldorf) ... as a husband
  • 2007: Ilja Richter remembers - show or so
  • 2007: Nibelungen Festival-Worms ... as Rüdiger von Bechelaren
  • 2007: AIDS Gala Hamburg
  • 2007: You don't even have to get crazy people in the mood
  • 2007: Kiss me, Kate - Duisburg
  • 2007: Hello, Dolly! - Tour
  • 2008: Richard III.
  • 2008: Nibelungen Festival-Worms ... as Rüdiger von Bechelaren
  • 2010: Monsieur Ibrahim and the flowers of the Koran - Schlossparktheater Berlin
  • 2011: Sixteen injured - Altes Schauspielhaus Stuttgart
  • 2011: Comedian by mistake - Comedy at the Marquardt in Stuttgart
  • 2016: Der Kredit - Theater / Tour
  • 2016: My Fair Lady - Bad Hersfelder Festspiele
  • 2017: Ilja Richter sings Georg Kreisler - tour
  • 2017: Ilja Richter plays in the musical "Catch me if you can" in the role of FBI agent "Agent Carl Hanratty" at the Jagsthausen Castle Festival

Radio plays and features

  • 1989 - Count Duckula
  • 1994 - The Lion King (Parts 1, 2 and 3), as Timon
  • 1999 - Tobias Totz and his lion , as a rhinoceros
  • 2001 - The wood worm of the opera tells
  • 2003 - The three ??? : Dangerous Quiz (episode 109), as Nick Nobel
  • 2003 - TKKG: Argentine kidnapping
  • 2004 - Artemis Fowl as Foaly
  • 2005 - Great stories retold - Alice in Wonderland , as the narrator
  • 2006 - Kabale und Liebe by Friedrich von Schiller , as Hofmarschall von Kalb, MDR, also as an audio book
  • 2008 - The Robber Hotzenplotz - The big 6 CD radio play box, as Petrosilius Zwackelmann
  • 2008 - Steffi Mannschatz : Beautiful, silent companion of the night (moon contemplations) - Director: Nikolai von Koslowski (Feature - MDR)
  • 2009 - Radio Tatort - Kaltfront , as Paul Breitner
  • 2014 - The mentor of Daniel Kehlmann , Erwin Roth cheek, MDR / ORF / WDR, also as an audiobook
  • 2016 - The sun by Reinhard Lakomy and Monika Ehrhardt , as Prince of Hell Lichterloh, Sony Music

Audio books

  • 2003 - shipwreck with Tiger
  • 2004 - Bambiland
  • 2005 - The background to the Helsinki Roccamatios
  • 2005 - The Bear Strategy
  • 2006 - The world is big
  • 2006 - Poems by Ringelnatz
  • 2007 - Bruno - von Bären und Menschen , Gugis, Lahr 2007, ISBN 978-3-939461-24-1 .

Records (selection)

  • 1961 - Chocolate, peppermint, sour drops
  • 1961 - rascal twists
  • 1961 - I want to pick flowers on Broadway
  • 1969 - Tip-tap in the tulips
  • 1970 - I like to fetch you the stars from the sky
  • 1972 - A gold medal for your super waist
  • 1977 - Tip-Tap in the tulips (new version)
  • 1979 - love in the office
  • 1984 - love song
  • 1999 - disco CD series
  • 2011 - 40 years of ZDF disco CD and DVD series
  • 2012 - Best Of disco book and CD series


Web links

Commons : Ilja Richter  - Collection of Images

Individual evidence

  1. Dieter Bartetzko : Ilja Richter: The big sad child . In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung . November 19, 2012, p. 30 .
  2. Viva! Issue 3/2015, p. 78.
  3. He belongs to Mutti . In: Spiegel online , September 24, 2004.
  4. Ilja Richter: You can't always be 60: grow older with a smile . 1st edition. riva, Munich 2013, ISBN 978-3-86883-294-5 , p. 256 .
  5. a b Border crossings with Ilja Richter . ( Memento from September 16, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) ARD
  6. Searching for traces. The five-minute Jew. How the actor Ilja Richter discovered his Jewish roots. In: , updated on June 10, 2016.
  7. see his statements in Deutschlandfunk Kultur- Sonntagsspaziergang on June 2, 2019.
  8. a b Wiebke Brauer: Legendary TV show. When disco came to Germany. In: one day . October 20, 2008, accessed on June 4, 2015 : “Ilja Richter, the disruptive factor between the hot hits, whose operetta-like interludes exude an odeur of pensioner humor: Richter disguises himself as Nana Mouskouri, he sings while standing on a surfboard on the Grand Canal Venice 'Hot Chosen from Athens'. No joke seems too shallow, no pun too brutal. In the practice of Dr. Sigmund Freudlos 'Hocus Pocus Oedipus' is conjured up. A woman screeches, Ilja Richter calls out: 'Watch out for glass', and Uschi Glas emerges from a shattering glass case. It couldn't be more stuffy. "
  9. Gunda Bartels: Chatterbox with character. In: December 23, 2012, accessed June 4, 2015 : “The man is a pain in the ass. Always has been. This torrent of words, these mannerisms, the crazy and the puns, in short - no one escapes the wave made by the comical Ilya Richter. "
  10. Disco with Ilja Richter. Retrieved on June 4, 2015 : "The sketches were characterized by a devastating joy in experimenting with the new blue box technology, the moderators an unscrupulous tendency to joke at any price."
  11. Veronika Immler, Antje Steinhäuser: You think it was great !: When Cheese Hedgehog and John Boy Walton said good night to each other in the party room . 1st edition. mvg Verlag, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-86882-156-7 , p. 13 ( extract from the publisher [PDF]).
  12. Edo Reents: Lights out - whomm! Spot on - yeah! In: Frankfurter Allgemeine - Feuilleton. December 2, 2011, accessed February 1, 2018 .
  13. Dominant mother drove Ilja Richter to success ., June 10, 2013.
  14. Winner 1978. ( Memento from August 18, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  15. a b Archive of the ECHO Klassik winners last accessed on: July 14, 2018.
  16. Bad Hersfeld Festival: “My Fair Lady” celebrates its premiere. In: July 7, 2016, accessed July 16, 2016 .
  17. ^ "Catch me if you can" as a musical at the Burgfestspiele in Jagsthausen - Hochstapelei an der Jagst , SWR "Kunscht", June 1, 2017, accessed June 18, 2017.