Walter Niklaus

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Walter Niklaus at the Leipzig Book Fair 2008

Walter Niklaus (born June 8, 1925 in Cologne ) is a German author , actor , radio play and theater director .


From 1949 to 1951 Niklaus received his acting training at the Conservatory in Erfurt. He made his acting debut in Cottbus in 1951 , where two years later he founded the cabaret The Five Sticklebacks together with Ellen Tiedtke , Ursula Wagner, Erhard Köster and Edi Weeber-Fried . Niklaus worked temporarily as a theater director in Cottbus and later in Schwerin and Erfurt .

From 1964 to 1990 Niklaus worked as head of the Leipzig directing group , which employs directors Günter Bormann , Annegret Berger and Klaus Zippel , in the Funkhaus Springerstraße for the main radio drama department of the GDR radio . He worked there as a director and speaker, for example in the 1972 production Der Mann mit dem Fahrrad , in which he was the main speaker alongside Alfred Bohl , with whom he dubbed 10 Sherlock Holmes films two years earlier .

In addition to his radio work, he was guest actor and director on various national stages. Due to his concise voice, he was used extensively as a voice actor, as a speaker in television documentaries and as a "narrator" in television films. At DEFA and DFF , he guided through the great television novels of the 1960s. His most distinctive speaking role is the dubbing of Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes in the Sherlock Holmes films of the 1930s and 1940s. Niklaus had another well-known speaking role in the GDR multi-part series Sachsens Glanz und Prussens Gloria as a narrator (chronicler).

As a film and television actor, Niklaus was often present in crime and justice films, for example as Kriminalsekretär Schmidt in Werner Toelcke's two-part television series He went alone (1967), as Professor Shuman in the documentary aftermath of an interrogation (1981) and above all as CIA agent Wilson in the television series The Invisible Visor (1973-79), which made him famous. According to contemporary criticism, he succeeded in incarnating the American secret service chief in a memorable way , so that behind the mask of the jovial and obliging one could expose and characterize the ice-cold and calculating secret service employee .

He is currently speaking documentary texts in the MDR series "Rätsel, Mythen und Legenden", which is moderated by Janine Strahl-Oesterreich.

Walter Niklaus was awarded the GDR Art Prize (1974). Even after the fall of the Berlin Wall, he was able to continue his artistic work in radio / radio play, the theater and as a voice actor.

Film and television (selection)

  • 1955: Ernst Thälmann - leader in his class
  • 1955: The Morals of Mrs. Dulska (Director - TV)
  • 1958: My wife makes music - author of the scenario
  • 1958: Miss Maliczewska (director - TV)
  • 1960: Arrogance comes before the bang
  • 1960: Today at Krügers (Director, Episode 6 - TV)
  • 1961: Humiliated and Offended (TV)
  • 1961: Secret front broken (TV)
  • 1961: The Fall of Frieders (TV)
  • 1961: who pays the bill? (TV)
  • 1961: The Other Face (TV)
  • 1961: bail (TV)
  • 1963: fog
  • 1963: Secret Threads (TV)
  • 1965: 24 Hours in Atlanta (TV)
  • 1965: Filed under 'M' (TV)
  • 1965: Fifth wheel on the car (TV)
  • 1965: Wolf among wolves (TV)
  • 1966: The prosecutor has the floor: Dead souls
  • 1967: Little Man - What Now?
  • 1967: He walked alone (TV)
  • 1967: The Parasite (Director - TV)
  • 1970: Everyone dies for himself alone (TV)
  • 1972: The Adjutant (TV)
  • 1972: The Lautensack Brothers (TV)
  • 1973 to 1979: The Invisible Visor (13 episodes - TV)
  • 1974: Visa for Ocantros (TV)
  • 1975: A fig leaf for Kuhle Wampe (TV)
  • 1975: My village (TV)
  • 1976: The Ring (TV)
  • 1977: Persecution (TV)
  • 1977: Don Carlos (TV)
  • 1978: Dangerous Manhunt (TV)
  • 1978: Dora Lemke's murderous matter (TV)
  • 1979: Farewell to Peace (TV)
  • 1981: Follow-up to an interrogation (TV)
  • 1981: In the Land of Eagles and Crosses (Speaker)
  • 1982: Bahnwärter Thiel (TV film)
  • 1987: Saxony's glory and Prussia's glory (TV)
  • 1991: My brother the clown (TV)

German voice of Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes

Walter Niklaus spoke the role of Sherlock Holmes in all 14 films in the Sherlock Holmes series with Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce from 1939–1946. The dubbed versions date from 1969 (films from 1943 to 1946) and were made in the studios of the German TV broadcaster . The other films, which date from 1939 to 1942, were only dubbed by ZDF in the 1990s .

Radio plays (selection)

GDR radio - director

Broadcasting of the GDR - speaker

ARD and DeutschlandRadio

  • 1991: Gerhard Rentzsch: Scenes from Germany, introduced and provided with interim reports on the journey of a man with a cardboard box (also speaker) (director) (radio play series: Moments No. 4 - DS Kultur / BR)
  • 1992: Walter Hasenclever / Kurt Tucholsky : Christoph Columbus or The Discovery of America (director), MDR
  • 1992: Friedrich Gorenstein : Dispute over Dostojewski - director (radio play - SFB / DS Kultur)
  • 1993: James Thurber : A Moon for Princess Leonore (Director), MDR
  • 1994: Handwoven under water (director), MDR
  • 1995: Björn Björnson: How the rabbit became an Easter bunny (director and narrator), MDR, as an audio book at: Der Audio Verlag 2004, ISBN 9783898132428
  • 1997: Der Aufschwung (director), MDR; Alexandre d. Ä. : Der Graf von Monte Cristo (director), coproduction: MDR / BR / ORF-Vienna
  • 1999: The Agostino Case (director), MDR; Twelve photos too many (director and author under the pseudonym Peter Kramer), MDR, as an audio book at Audiobuch 2001, ISBN 9783933199621
  • 2000: Donna W. Cross : Die Päpstin (Director), MDR, as an audio book on 2 CDs at: Der Audio Verlag 2000, ISBN 9783898130691
  • 2001: Günter Kunert : Am Sexophon: Esmeralda (director)
  • 2001: Józef Ignacy Kraszewski : Countess Cosel (General Schulenburg) - (adaptation and direction) (radio play (5 parts) - MDR) as an audio book at Der Audio Verlag 2001, ISBN 9783898131568
  • 2003: Ingomar von Kieseritzky : Fortune or Die Tücke des Objekt (director), coproduction: MDR / SWR
  • 2004: Rolf Schneider : Die Affäre d'Aubray (Nivelin, lawyer) - (director) (radio play - MDR / RBB)
  • 2004: The Great Deeds of a Young Don Juan (director), MDR; Günter Kunert: The doll (director), MDR
  • 2005: Rolf Schneider: Die Affaire D'Aubrey (director), coproduction: MDR / RBB
  • 2006: Michael Ende : Das kleine Lumpenkasperle / Das Traumfresserchen (director), MDR; Dragons, cats, royal children (actor and director), MDR
  • 2007: Frieder Faist : Ballad of Art, Vengeance, Greed and Loyalty (Director), MDR; Michael Ende: The Teddy and the Animals (Director), MDR
  • 2009: Rolf Schneider: Die Affaire Winckelmann (director), coproduction: MDR / ORF
  • 2010: Farewell at the River (Director), MDR
  • 2011: Günter Kunert: The Gondolier von Itzehoe (director), MDR
  • 2012: It's not all evening yet (actor and director), MDR
  • 2015: Deadly (author, director and speaking role) (detective radio play - MDR)

Theater productions (selection)



  • Art Prize of the GDR 1974
  • Critics' directorial award 1985 for Willi and the others by Katrin Lange
  • Hörkules 2005 for: The Popess by Donna W. Cross - Directed

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Norbert Wehrstedt: Player with the voice in: Leipziger Volkszeitung from June 8, 2015, p. 8