Süddeutscher Rundfunk

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Süddeutscher Rundfunk
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General information
Watch TV: Southwest 3
Resolution: August 30, 1998
Successor: SWR
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The Süddeutsche Rundfunk (SDR) was from 1949 to 1998 the state broadcaster for the northern part of Baden-Württemberg , more precisely for the area of ​​the state of Württemberg-Baden, which existed until 1952 .

The SDR was an institution under public law with its headquarters in Stuttgart and a founding member of the ARD . Studios existed in Mannheim , Karlsruhe , Heilbronn , Heidelberg and Ulm as well as in Bonn . On October 1, 1998, the Süddeutsche Rundfunk and the Südwestfunk (SWF) went into the new Südwestrundfunk (SWR).

Südwestfunk Saarländischer Rundfunk Süddeutscher Rundfunk Süddeutscher Rundfunk Bayerischer Rundfunk Hessischer Rundfunk Westdeutscher Rundfunk Sender Freies Berlin Norddeutscher Rundfunk Radio Bremen Radio Bremen Radio BremenARD Landesrundfunkanstalten.svg


Predecessor of the SDR (1924–1945)

Program guide from 1924
Office in Stuttgart with Artistic Director Bofinger and others, 1924

On March 3, 1924, the Süddeutsche Rundfunk AG (SÜRAG) was founded in Stuttgart , which began broadcasting on May 11, 1924. In May 1925, the company joined the Reichs-Rundfunk-Gesellschaft based in Berlin. In 1930 SÜRAG put the Mühlacker transmitter on medium wave into operation, the first major German broadcaster. In 1933 the Süddeutsche Rundfunk AG was converted into a GmbH .

After the seizure of power of the NSDAP regional companies to branches of the Reichs-Rundfunk-Gesellschaft were. From April 1, 1934, the previous names were standardized according to the scheme: Reichssender (headquarters) and the Süddeutsche Rundfunk became the Reichssender Stuttgart . He was part of the German unity broadcast, which broadcast from January 1, 1939 under the name Großdeutscher Rundfunk . The operation of the Reichsender Stuttgart ended on April 5, 1945.

Transmission area of ​​the Süddeutscher Rundfunk (1949–1998) in Baden-Württemberg (only since 1952)
... as part of the American zone of occupation

Radio Stuttgart and SDR (1945–1998)

On June 3, 1945, the radio station Radio Stuttgart was set up by an allied local military government . On July 8, 1945, after the withdrawal of French forces, it was officially taken over by the local US military government . He broadcast a program of several hours every day via medium wave . The director was Captain Fred G. Taylor, who later became the US director of the RIAS . On June 13, 1947, the station received a German director , Fritz Ermarth . He resigned on November 7, 1947. In 1949 the radio station Radio Stuttgart was transferred to an institution under public law for the state of Württemberg-Baden and renamed Süddeutscher Rundfunk . He was a founding member of the ARD founded on June 9, 1950 .

Even after the formation of the state of Baden-Württemberg in 1952, the SDR remained the state broadcaster for the northern part of the state. For many years, Baden-Württemberg was the only federal state that had two state broadcasters under public law (SDR and SWF). This situation ended in 1998 with the merger of the two stations.

On March 10, 1976, the new Stuttgart radio station went into operation after a five-year construction period.

Until March 1988, the radio programs of the Süddeutscher Rundfunk were known as Südfunk Stuttgart .

Program history

The SDR only broadcast one radio program until November 1950 (later referred to as Südfunk 1 or SDR 1 ). Then the second radio program ( Südfunk 2 or SDR 2 ) started broadcasting via VHF . On November 1, 1964, the third radio program followed, also via VHF, initially as the “ guest worker program ”, which was expanded from October 1, 1979 as a music and service wave to the full program Radio 3 Südfunk Stuttgart . From 1985 it was on the air under the name Südfunk 3 , and in 1988 it was renamed SDR 3 .

On April 5, 1969, the SDR, together with the Südwestfunk (SWF) and the Saarländischer Rundfunk (SR) Südwest 3, began the third television program for the states of Baden-Württemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland. It was the last of its kind in Germany before reunification. The program was gradually expanded into a full program and has been on the air every day since 1971.

In the blanking interval of this program, the SDR started its regional teletext offer in 1984 under the name Südfunk-Text , which was later merged with the SWF text started at the same time to form the Südwest-Text .

From the beginning of the 80s regional programs were occasionally broadcast on the new frequencies of the guest worker program with Kurpfalz radio , Radio Stuttgart and the Ulm Saturday radio (later Schwaben Radio ). This was followed by Frankenradio and Badenradio and the joint cover Südfunk 4 and SDR 4 was created for the regional programs .

On January 1, 1991, the second radio program SDR 2 was merged with SWF2 , the second radio program of Südwestfunk, to form the new culture channel S2 Kultur . At the same time, S4 Baden-Württemberg was started, a joint program with the SWF that replaced SDR 4 . The regional programs remained largely unchanged except for Radio Stuttgart , which was renamed Württemberg Radio and was now produced in alternation with the SWF studio in Tübingen.

On May 17, 1997, SDR and SWF launched the youth multimedia DASDING as part of the DAB pilot project in Baden-Württemberg. It is a 24-hour offer for young people between 14 and 24 years of age, which is distributed via DAB and ADR , on the Internet and, since 2000, via several small local FM stations. DASDING combined the media of radio, television and the Internet into what was then a new offering.

All SDR programs continued to broadcast until August 29, 1998. On August 30, 1998, the SWR programs began broadcasting. Officially, SDR 1 and SWF1 became SWR1 Baden-Württemberg , S2 Kultur was renamed SWR2 , SDR 3 and SWF3 became SWR3 and S4 Baden-Württemberg was renamed SWR4 Baden-Württemberg . The DASDING youth program will be continued by SWR. In fact, the merger was tantamount to a takeover of SDR by the SWF, from which the director, a large part of the program managers and the (previously very different at SDR and SWF) program culture were taken over. After all, the seat of the previous SDR was taken over as the seat of the new SWR: the state capital Stuttgart .

The “third” television program Südwest 3 was converted into the two programs Südwest BW and Südwest RP (later Südwest Fernsehen and now SWR Fernsehen).


  • March 3, 1924 to 1945: Alfred Bofinger (1891–1959), 1924–1933 board member of Süddeutsche Rundfunk AG. Bofinger was the only director of the Weimar Republic that the National Socialists left in office in 1933. All others were replaced by NSDAP members.
  • April 15, 1933 to January 1934: Walther Beumelburg (October 4, 1894 - 1944), director of the Süddeutsche Rundfunk GmbH
  • 1934–1945: Alfred Bofinger, director of the Reichssender Stuttgart
  • June 13, 1947 to November 7, 1947: Fritz Ermarth (1909–1948), director of the military broadcaster Radio Stuttgart (resigned after five months)
  • October 1, 1948 to August 31, 1949: Erich Roßmann (1884–1953), director of Radio Stuttgart
  • September 1, 1949 to August 31, 1958: Fritz Eberhard (1896–1982), director of the SDR
  • September 1, 1958 to December 31, 1989: Hans Bausch (1921–1991), Director of the SDR
  • January 1, 1990 to September 30, 1998: Hermann Fünfgeld (1931–2018), director of the SDR

Pause sign

The Süddeutsche Rundfunk used the opening line of the Swabian folk song Jetzt gang i ans Brünnele as a pause . It could be heard in different variations in the course of use, but was later no longer in use due to the jingles .


Since the start of broadcasting, the SDR has hosted radio broadcasts and then also TV programs for German television as part of ARD . The time before 8 p.m. was then reserved for regional programs with entertainment series and information programs (state show and evening show). The cartoon characters Äffle and Pferdle from the “advertising breaks” became popular.

Most recently, the SDR organized the following television programs in cooperation with other broadcasters:

watch TV

  • ARTE - German-French cultural channel
  • Das Erste - First German Television (joint program of ARD)
    Program examples:
  • KiKA - children's channel from ARD and ZDF
  • Phoenix - joint event channel of ARD and ZDF
  • 3sat - cultural channel from ARD, ZDF, ORF and SRG
  • Südwest 3 - Third TV program for Baden-Württemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland (cooperation with SWF and SR)


Over the years, more radio programs were added, Südfunk1 broadcast on medium wave (Mühlacker transmitter) and, like the other programs, also on FM. In the cultural program in particular, there was a collaboration with Südwestfunk; in the 1980s there was an increasing tendency towards a joint program.

  • DASDING - youth program, at that time still under construction (cooperation with the SWF)
  • S2 Kultur - Kulturradio (together with the SWF; partly with "window program" for the countries): classical music (with in-house productions by the orchestra and the choir, cultural and current information, radio plays and features , jazz programs such as "Treffpunkt Jazz") . The forerunner was the culture radio SDR 2 , which was produced independently until 1991
  • S4 Baden-Württemberg - regionalized program from the SDR studios in Stuttgart (Württemberg-Radio; joint production with the SWF-Studio Tübingen), Karlsruhe (Baden-Radio), Mannheim (Kurpfalz-Radio), Heilbronn (Franken-Radio) and Ulm (Schwaben-Radio) with music for the older generation; Emerged from SDR 4 in 1991 ; the coat range was produced in cooperation with the SWF
  • SDR 1 - full program, magazine format with times for specialist editors, information and background (“current” broadcasts), music color oriented towards the “generation up to 59”
  • SDR 3 - Popradio since 1979; Before that already a youth program (POINT) since 1975, as a radio for the wild south since 1988, record hit parade Top 1000x from August 14, 1989 for five days around the clock, with the winner Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin


For the entire ARD, the SDR regularly took over two reporting regions in particular: Southern Africa (Johannesburg) and the Middle East. This region with its crises (Israel-Arab states; collapse of Lebanon) was always in a special “focus”, locations were Cairo and Beirut or Amman , if possible also Tehran, later there was a correspondent for the Turkey and Iran area. Gerhard Konzelmann's name in particular is closely linked to the region and the station.

In addition, they sent their own radio correspondents to London and Washington in particular; political correspondents worked in Bonn and later in a joint studio in the capital.

Sound body

The SDR had the following orchestras and choirs:


In addition to the broadcasting house in Stuttgart, Süddeutsche Rundfunk operated studios in its broadcasting area for regional reporting and, in some cases, with additional responsibilities for the entire broadcasting area or the entire ARD :

The Heidelberg-Mannheim studio with the science and, at times, the school radio editorial team had its headquarters since 1967 in the former Villa Bosch in Heidelberg. After the opening of the Mannheim studio, it was only called "Studio Heidelberg". For financial reasons, the SDR sold Villa Bosch in 1994 and closed the Heidelberg studio. From then on, Studio Heidelberg-Mannheim, based in Mannheim, was responsible for the reporting area and also housed the science editorial office.

The Karlsruhe studio had ARD-wide responsibility for reporting from the Federal Court of Justice and the Federal Constitutional Court . The name of the program "From the Residence of Law", which has been broadcast since 1952, gave rise to the name for the city of Karlsruhe that is common today (not the other way around). This broadcast - now known as “Radioreport Recht” - has survived as the only one from the SDR 1 program to this day in the SWR 1 program .

There are other studios in Heilbronn and Ulm . All of the studios mentioned, as far as they existed at the time of the merger with Südwestfunk , will continue to be operated by Südwestrundfunk today .


Stuttgart TV tower

To broadcast its radio programs and the first TV program of the ARD, the SDR recently had the following basic network stations . With the exception of the medium-wave transmitters, all locations are still operated by SWR today. By far the most famous building among them is the Stuttgart TV tower , built from 1954 to 1956 , a landmark of the state capital. It is the first television tower of its kind and formed the logo of the Süddeutscher Rundfunk in an abstract form in a circle.

In addition, the SDR operated around 250 filling transmitters to supply valleys or other areas in the shadow of reception, including the Blaubeuren transmitter and the Buchen transmitter .


  • Rosemarie Eick (* 1927, † 1989) was the spokeswoman for Albrecht Baehr 's senior program, then and now . In addition, she moderated, among other things, the request concert program You wish, we play , which - because it was broadcast in the morning - was particularly popular with housewives.
  • Erna Fassbinder (* 1898, † 1980), originally an actress, was already active in the Süddeutscher Rundfunk from 1925 and from 1950 she became the unforgettable "Frieda" in the popular Staudenmaier family radio series .
  • Günter Freund (* 1922; † 2010) moderated the hit scale every Monday shortly before 8 p.m. in the 1960s and 1970s , which regularly reached hundreds of thousands of regular listeners on Südfunk 1. In it, listeners could vote for the most popular hit by postcard.
  • Hermann Haarmann (* February 15, 1920, † August 14, 1973), the popular alarm clock on duty , shaped the SDR's morning housewife program With Music, everything goes better for years .

  • Rainer Nitschke
  • Bernd Duschinski
  • Sibylle Nägele
  • Gisela Böhnke
  • Michael Branik
  • Wolfgang Walker moderated the program 'An answer is asked for' (uAwg) from Monday to Thursday 3:03 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
  • Roswitha Roszak
  • Andreas Rupniak
  • Bernharda Buch (announcer - television)
  • Manfred Nägele (evening show - regional television)
  • Albert Hofele (* 1896; † 1972), originally an actor and opera singer, had his first radio broadcast on August 26, 1925 and it is impossible to imagine the history of the Süddeutscher Rundfunk without it. Until 1968 he presented the Saturday evening programs Froher Klang and Volksgesang and Mit Volksmusik ins Land .
  • Heinz Kilian (* 1915; † 2007), known as "the voice" of the former Süddeutscher Rundfunk, was chief spokesman for the SDR, and sat at the microphone in the Stuttgart radio station for about 34 years. Almost every radio listener between the Main and Lake Constance was familiar with his voice between the 1950s and 1970s. Kilian was the first radio presenter in Germany to involve the listeners directly. Hundreds of thousands of listeners followed the show you wish we play every day , which he hosted for 14 years.
  • Fred Metzler (* 1929; † 2010) was a popular spokesman for the SDR, who liked to say goodbye to the listeners at the end of a program with the words "best regards from house to house".
  • Waldemar Müller (* 1918; † 2001) was also a popular speaker for the SDR, primarily because of his sonorous voice.
  • Cläre Schimmel (* 1902; † 1986) was senior game director at the SDR radio from 1945 to 1967. During this time she produced hundreds of radio plays as a director for the station.
  • For nine years, until 1968, Robert Vogel , as the successor to Curt Elwenspoek , hosted the Gutnacht song show for children, which adults also liked to hear.
  • Günther Willmann (* 1928; † 2017) was an announcer and speaker at Radio Stuttgart from 1946 and as a presenter and reporter for the SDR from 1957
  • For jazz: Dieter Zimmerle and Gudrun Endress
  • Elsbeth Janda (* 1923; † 2005) from the Electoral Palatinate, also for television
  • Martin Walser (* 1927) began working as a reporter for SDR in 1949 and writing radio plays. A temporary permanent position at SDR enabled him to do his doctorate in Tübingen in 1951. Together with Helmut Jedele , he formed the core of the “team of geniuses” at Stuttgart radio and, as a freelancer, helped set up the station's television section. He directed radio plays and worked on the book for the first television film production on German post-war television in 1953. At the same time, he deepened his contacts with the literary scene as a radio editor and author.
  • Otto Düben (* 1928; † 2018), director, dramaturge and head of artistic word since 1968, directed over 400 radio plays. His name remains associated with the crime series Aus Studio 13 in SDR 1 .

Watching television:

  • Dagmar Bergmeister (* 1929; † 2013) was the first announcer of the SDR. Years later, she was dismissed from the station as "too old", sued again in labor court proceedings, but despite being on the broadcast line for weeks, she was not employed again and finally gave up in exasperation.
  • In the fall of 1953, Helmut Jedele first became television commissioner, then television director of the Süddeutscher Rundfunk. In this function he was chairman of the television program conference in 1957 and coordinator of "German television". In 1959 he went to Bavaria Atelier GmbH ( Bavaria Film ) in Munich, a subsidiary of WDR and "his" SDR
  • Horst Jaedicke was the second television director of the Südfunk television. During his tenure, Vicco von Bülow ( cartoon ) and Horst Stern ( Stern's hour ) made discoveries for television. He gave documentary filmmakers such as the late Heinz Huber, Dieter Ertel (he later became television director at Radio Bremen ), Corinne Pulver and Elmar Hügler a free hand, and new forms of entertainment could also be tried out during Jaedicke's tenure: p , Uncle Otto's birthday , the first improvisation program of German television, the documentary about the Franco-Prussian War of 1870/1871 , which was re-enacted with television correspondents as if it had already been reported on television. For example, Peter Scholl-Latour “reported” in contemporary costume from Paris.
  • Emil Obermann , editor-in-chief of television until 1985, broadcast pro and contra


  • Robert Heinze: Radio Stuttgart, 1945-47. A radio under construction . Master's thesis, University of Konstanz 2004 ( full text )
  • Horst Jaedicke: The good old Südfunk. Hohenheim Verlag, Stuttgart 2005, ISBN 3-89850-126-4

Individual evidence

  1. Herwig John: The radio in southwest Germany in the time before and after the collapse of 1945, p. 162 ( online ). In: Hansmartin Schwarzmaier (Hrsg.): Landesgeschichte und Zeitgeschichte: End of the war in 1945 and a new democratic beginning on the Upper Rhine (1980), pp. 153–178.
  2. ard.de
  3. ^ Ansgar Diller: Broadcasting Policy in the Third Reich . In: Hans Bausch (Ed.): Rundfunk in Deutschland , Volume 2, dtv 3184, Munich 1980, ISBN 3-423-03184-0 .
  4. ARD pause sign switchover SDR 1980s on YouTube .
  5. The first hit parade 1989 - Stefan Siller and the TOP 1000X on www.swr.de (swr1 / bw / musik)
  6. Gudrun Endress was the presenter of the SDR show Jazz aktuell
  7. See also Dagmar Bergmeister ( Memento from February 3, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) at ARD-Glossary: ​​On December 16, 1954 at 8 p.m. it went on the air after the SDR was looking for an announcer who shouldn't be too sexy as a TV announcer and not Swabian spoke.

Web links

Commons : Süddeutscher Rundfunk  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 48 ° 47 '36.4 "  N , 9 ° 12' 11.2"  E