What am I?
|Original title||What am I?|
|Country of production||Federal Republic of Germany|
|Year (s)||1955-1958, 1961-1989, 2000-2005|
|music||Title melody composed by Jean Thomé|
|First broadcast||January 2, 1955 on German television|
What am I? , the cheerful career advice , was a quiz show that was broadcast from 1955 to 1958 and from 1961 to 1989 by the first German television and Bavarian radio . The 337 episodes were moderated by Robert Lembke . The concept was later taken up again by various broadcasters.
The broadcast on August 29, 1967 was the first color broadcast of the Bavarian Radio. It was produced at the IFA in Berlin with the help of color cameras from the NDR . Some subsequent broadcasts from Unterföhring were then produced in black and white again.
The quiz format came from Mark Goodson and Bill Todman and was launched in the US as the game show What's my line? first broadcast on February 2, 1950 on CBS . The program's surprise guests included Marlon Brando , Bette Davis , Doris Day , Marlene Dietrich , Walt Disney , Alfred Hitchcock , Groucho Marx , Frank Sinatra , Salvador Dalí and Ed Wynn . The advice team included u. a. the actress Arlene Francis , who also became known in Germany through the film Eins, Zwei, drei by Billy Wilder . The program was also adopted in the UK and aired from 1951 to 1963. During a visit to the BBC in London in 1954, Robert Lembke acquired the exploitation rights to this broadcast format.
The first episode was titled “Yes or No. A psychological extemporal with seven unknown sizes ”premiered on January 2, 1955. The moderator was Robert Lembke, as no one else had reported.
The first advice team included:
- Hans Sachs , senior public prosecutor in Nuremberg
- Inge Sandtner (from Austria )
- Anja Golz (from Switzerland )
- Peter Mauch
In the original 80-minute form of “What am I?” Seven professions had to be guessed. The first guest whose profession the team was supposed to find out was Tilde Bublitz-Lindmayer, who worked as a hairdresser. The first star guest was Vico Torriani . On March 21, 1958, the quiz was discontinued after 29 episodes, as the questioning technique had got stuck in the opinion of the audience.
After symptoms of fatigue at “What am I?” Lembke presented the quiz “Playing with words” in 1959. Such a change was not unusual at the time, Peter Frankenfeld and Hans-Joachim Kulenkampff also presented new shows every two years. The viewers refused Lembke's new program, however, which resulted in a new edition of "What am I?" From February 11, 1961.
The new advice team consisted of:
- Hans Sachs , senior public prosecutor in Nuremberg
- Annette von Aretin , TV announcer and head of the BR casting office
- Guido Baumann , head of entertainment at Swiss television
- Marianne Koch , actress and doctor from the 1970s
The advice team was originally made up of Peter Kottmann, the former head of entertainment at WDR , who was replaced by Baumann in 1962 after his suicide . Anneliese Fleyenschmidt , television announcer and presenter, often alternated with Marianne Koch from 1965 to 1979 . Ingrid Wendl , Austrian TV announcer, was involved in the program as a replacement for Fleyenschmidt and Koch, Max Rüeger as a replacement for Baumann.
Since 1956 Robert Lembke took his fox terrier "Struppi" as a mascot in the program, which was supposed to guard the five-mark pieces. After his death in 1959, the dog "Jacky" was his successor, who was there until December 1968. From then on, Lembke stopped taking dogs into the studio.
Technical and organizational details
Lembke received around 6,000 letters a month in which candidates with more or less rare occupations introduced themselves. 20 to 30 of them were mostly shortlisted. A housewife also appeared before the council team; her profession was guessed very late. "Could your job be carried out by a man?" Asked Guido Baumann. A questioning look and Lembke decided: "Let's say no."
The production costs were modest: Lembke received 6,000 DM per shipment (as of 1974) (corresponds to 8,516 euros today, adjusted for inflation), the members of the advice team almost 1,000 DM (1,419 euros) each and the assistant Irene Aulich (since 1967) 150 DM (212, 89 euros). After ten no answers, each guest could win a maximum of 50 DM, which, due to inflation, would correspond to 127.77 euros for the first year of broadcasting in 1955 and 43.76 euros for 1989.
The recording took place in Studio 2 of the Bayerischer Rundfunk in Unterföhring near Munich . Twelve programs were produced per year until 1973, after which only eight. Two programs were shot one after the other on each recording date, which also saved costs.
- Stage design and props
- a table for the advice team
- a table for Robert Lembke with a guest
- (Pre-) nameplates of the advice team
- Turn-over license plates for Lembke
- different colored piggy banks
- a gong with a mallet
- a signature board
- Eye masks for the guessing team for celebrity guessing
Procedure and rituals
Since 1961, every program has been divided into four rounds of installments: In the first three rounds, the occupations of the three guests had to be guessed by yes / no or decision-making questions. At the beginning of each round, Robert Lembke asked his guest the standard question in cozy Bavarian language: "Which piglet would you like?" typical - not too revealing - hand gesture. Each member of the advice team was then allowed to ask a question until they received a “no”. Then the right to ask questions was passed on to the next one. After every “no”, Lembke flipped the next higher number plate forwards by hand and threw a five-mark piece into the piggy bank. Either the round was over after the tenth “No” or the profession was guessed. Afterwards, the occupation of the respective guest was usually presented with a recorded film.
The star guest appeared in the fourth round. Previously, the council members had to put on masks and then guess the name of the guest using the same yes / no scheme. The guest was not allowed to answer himself, only nod or shake his head. Robert Lembke answered for him, but always told the team beforehand the gender of the star guest. Instead of a five-mark piece, there was a small gift for every no answer, such as B. a bottle of wine. Mostly the star guest was guessed, often by the "guessing fox" Guido Baumann. After the guessing round, the guest gave a sample of his art (a song or a recorded film scene). Once there was B. Rita Pavone was a guest on the show and after the round of guessing she swung the dance floor with Hans Sachs to the sound of her famous hit “Arrivederci, Hans”.
The spectators who followed the process in the studio were often amused when the advice team pursued wrong leads. The television viewer knew the solution in advance (through a display ). The name of the star guest was also displayed for the viewer before the guessing round, although it was mostly well-known personalities. The acoustic signal (gong) was also common here.
At that time, morals were even stricter than at the later revival with Björn-Hergen Schimpf . Lembke always made sure that the advice team did not communicate with each other. Everyone was on their own when it came their turn. Those who couldn't think of anything else could only pass on the right to ask questions.
Occasionally a member of the advice team knew a non-prominent candidate personally and therefore knew his job straight away. Then the unwritten rule applied that this was indicated and one was eliminated from guessing for this round.
It also happened occasionally that a non-prominent guest was nevertheless a certain level of awareness from the outset, or that Lembke at least assumed that someone from the advice team knew the guest. In such cases, the guest came in disguise, e.g. B. in the studio with a fake beard.
- "Are you busy with the production or distribution of goods?" (Was usually the first question, no matter by whom)
- "Could I come to you too?"
- "Can you do this service for me?" (Guido Baumann)
- "I pass on to Hans / Anneliese / .."
- "Do you make people happy / satisfied?"
- "Am I right in assuming that you are not ..." (Hans Sachs)
- "Which little pig would you like?" (Robert Lembke)
- "I hope you enjoyed it a bit and you invite us back to your next What am I?" (Robert Lembke)
After Robert Lembke's death on January 15, 1989, the longest-lived quiz show on German television was discontinued. The last recorded broadcast ran four days earlier. In 1969 the quiz was the most popular program on German television with 75% devices switched on. In the 1980s, “What am I?” Still reached up to 40%.
List of ARD broadcasts with Robert Lembke
|October 23, 1955||Ruth Leuwerik|
|November 19, 1955|
|December 11, 1955|
|December 11, 1956|
|29||03/21/1958||Anneliese Rothenberger , Rudolf Vogel , Sepp Herberger|
|December 20, 1961||Ilse Werner , Josef Niessen|
|January 17, 1962||Maria Andergast|
|08/15/1962||Felix von Eckardt|
|11/07/1962||Ralf Bendix , Willi Daume , Melitta Muszely|
|December 11, 1962||Hugo Strasser|
|02/13/1963||Hans Jürgen Diedrich|
|04/17/1963||Hermann Prey , Wolfgang Windgassen|
|08/21/1963||Ernst Fritz Fürbringer|
|October 16, 1963||Maria Stader|
|December 04, 1963||Ingeborg Hallstein|
|January 15, 1964||Lale Andersen|
|45||October 28, 1964||Gloria Davy|
|47||December 31, 1964||Rudolf Koeckert|
|51||04/07/1965||Lisa della Casa|
|59||12/22/1965||Regensburg Cathedral Sparrows|
|62||March 16, 1966||Inge Meysel|
|63||04/20/1966||Johanna von Koczian|
|64||May 25, 1966||Hans-Jochen Vogel|
|65||06/22/1966||Esther & Abi Ofarim|
|68||09/20/1966||Hilde Krahl , Wolfgang Liebeneiner|
|71||December 20, 1966||Wastl Fanderl|
|81||October 24, 1967||Gitte Hænning|
|83||December 19, 1967||Schöneberg Boys' Choir|
|93||October 29, 1968||Roy Black|
|95||December 17, 1968||Alexandra|
|97||02/11/1969||Jürgen von Manger|
|103||08/19/1969||Walter Berry , Christa Ludwig|
|110||March 24, 1970||Rita Pavone|
|112||May 19, 1970||Anna Moffo|
|115||August 18, 1970||Uschi Glas|
|116||09/22/1970||Peter Alexander , Werner Bochmann|
|119||December 22, 1970||Karel Gott|
|127||08/24/1971||Ralph Maria Siegel , Olympic hostess Silvia Sommerlath (later Silvia of Sweden )|
|129||October 19, 1971||Vicky Leandros|
|131||December 21, 1971||Daliah Lavi|
|132||January 11, 1972||Ivan Rebroff|
|136||05/02/1972||Viktor de Kowa|
|140||08/22/1972||Vicco von Bülow|
|142||October 31, 1972||Michael Schanze|
|144||January 16, 1973||Charles Aznavour|
|160||05/28/1974||Cindy & Bert|
|165||December 3, 1974||Peter Minich|
|170||May 27, 1975||Roy Etzel|
|173||October 28, 1975||Dalida|
|175||December 23, 1975||Tölzer Boys Choir|
|196||January 17, 1978||Max Greger|
|205||December 07, 1978||Sylvia Geszty|
|January 16, 1979||André Heller|
|December 18, 1979||Mildred Scheel|
|January 15, 1980||Joana|
|April 8, 1980||Samy Molcho|
|03/03/1981||Franz Alt , Kurt Felix , Friedrich Nowottny|
|08/25/1981||Ralph Siegel , Karel Gott|
|December 8, 1981||Horst Stern|
|01/12/1982||Pierre Brice , Richard Clayderman|
|December 21, 1982||Gustl Bayrhammer|
|09/27/1983||Thomas Gottschalk , Mike Krüger|
|December 6, 1983||Veronica Carstens|
|01/31/1984||Zsa Zsa Gabor|
|March 26, 1985||Carl-Heinz Schroth|
|301||May 21, 1985||Siegfried Lowitz|
|302||06/25/1985||Axel von Ambesser , Reiner Klimke|
|304||08/20/1985||Wants to fly quad|
|307||November 19, 1985||Heinz Sielmann|
|308||01/14/1986||Peter Alexander , Franz Beckenbauer|
|311||04/22/1986||Rolf Knie , Gaston & Pipo|
|312||06/03/1986||Mary & Gordy|
|315||09/16/1986||GRACE, Peter Wirnsberger|
|318||01/06/1987||Franz Xaver Kroetz|
|327||December 01, 1987||Jil Sander|
|329||03/15/1988||first general uncertainty|
|331||May 24, 1988||Evelyn Hamann|
|334||09/13/1988||40 guests of honor for Robert Lembke's 75th birthday|
|337||01/10/1989||Oleg Popow - Last broadcast with Robert Lembke|
Guido Baumann moderated the show in 1990 with the old advice team on the private broadcaster Sat.1 under the title “Heiter weiter” . The quiz show was discontinued after 26 episodes.
First German television
From 1990 to 1993, Bayerischer Rundfunk continued Joachim Fuchsberger's broadcast under the title “Yes or No” with 60 episodes. The advice team consisted of:
- Alice Schwarzer
- Gerhard Konzelmann
- Vera Russwurm
- Emil Steinberger
- Thomas Hegemann (replaced Steinberger in 1991)
- Sepp Maier (replaced Konzelmann in 1992)
Since the 12th season of the show on Kabel 1, a guest rate fox has visited every show and replaced a member of the advice team. Schimpf changed Robert Lembke's question about the piggy bank into “Which sow exactly?” Or “Which animal from here?”.
With the introduction of the euro, the conceptual task of what amount should be played had to be solved. The largest regular unit here only goes up to the two euro coin. This problem was solved by purchasing three sets of ten five-mark pieces from a coin dealer for production. After the broadcast, the winnings were converted into euros and given to the candidate.
The main change compared to the original was that the advice team was allowed to find solutions together; so there was wild chatter, Feuerstein left z. B. once outraged the table and demonstratively sat down in the audience or Tanja Schumann danced on the table.
During the piloting there was a complete second advice team, which u. a. the one from “ All nothing right ?! “Well-known Hella belonged to her senses . Based on market research results, however, the other panel prevailed.
An additional guessing round with Mr. X was introduced at Kabel Eins . This was a person who civilly bears the name of a celebrity or a well-known fictional character from film, television or novels. There were candidates named Stephen King or Heinz Rühmann. It was a question of guessing this name.
After a total of twelve seasons produced, the show was discontinued in early 2005.
In his TV total program , Stefan Raab tried, based on “What am I?” In “Who am I and what am I actually doing here?” To guess an employee whose work was then presented by asking yes-no. Elton guided through the guessing game, in which the employee could win up to ten five-mark pieces. TV total was discontinued in December 2015.
In August 2020, NDR broadcast the 100th broadcast of Hardly to believe! in which a four-person guessing team has to guess special occupations or experiences of visitors.
Parody of the November 2nd 1976 broadcast
- Lembke: “Which little pig would you like?” Bommel: “What did he say?” Bimmel: “He said we should choose a pig.” Bommel: “Well, Tony Marshall .” Bimmel: “No, which color we want. "
- Bommel: "He's got a sweet bottom." Bimmel: "Bommel, that's a piggy bank."
- Ricarda Strobel and Werner Faulstich : The German TV stars. Vol. 1: Stars from the very beginning. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1998. ISBN 3-525-20796-4