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Friedrich Kayssler

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Friedrich Kayssler
Kayssler in 1898
Friedrich Martin Adalbert Kayssler

(1874-04-07)7 April 1874
Died30 April 1945(1945-04-30) (aged 71)
Years active1913–1945

Friedrich Martin Adalbert Kayssler,[1] also spelled Kayßler (7 April 1874 – 30 April 1945), was a German theatre and film actor.[2] He appeared in 56 films between 1913 and 1945.


Kayssler was born in Neurode in the Silesia Province of Prussia (now Nowa Ruda in Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland). He attended the gymnasium in Breslau (Wrocław), where he became a close friend of Christian Morgenstern and Fritz Beblo. Graduating in 1893 Kayssler studied philosophy at the Universities of Breslau and Munich and began his theatre career at the Deutsches Theater in Berlin under manager Otto Brahm, later working at municipal theatres in Görlitz and Halle.

At the Deutsches Theater, Kayssler had made friends with director Max Reinhardt, whose Schall und Rauch Kabarett ensemble in Berlin he joined in 1901. He followed Reinhardt, when he became manager of the Deutsches Theater in 1905, where Kayssler performed in Kleist's The Prince of Homburg, Goethe's Faust and Ibsen's Peer Gynt. He also succeeded Reinhardt as manager of the Berlin Volksbühne from 1918 until 1923. He first appeared as a film actor in the silent movie Welche sterben, wenn sie lieben in 1913 and wrote several poems and dramas. In 1934 he starred alongside Veit Harlan in the Berlin premiere of Eugen Ortner's Meier Helmbrecht at the Staatliches Schauspielhaus .

In March 1944, his son Christian, who was also a popular film actor, was killed in an Allied bombing raid. Kayssler was named as one of the Third Reich's most important artists in the Gottbegnadeten list of September 1944. During the Battle of Berlin, Kayssler was killed by Red Army troops[3] at his house in the suburb of Kleinmachnow, when he tried to protect his wife.[4] Ernst Lemmer claimed in his memoirs that after Kayssler was shot, two young women hiding in his home were raped and murdered by the soldiers.[5]

Selected filmography


  • Simplicius (1905)
  • Sagen aus Mijnhejm (1909)
  • Schauspielernotizen (1910–1914)
  • Jan der Wunderbare (1917)
  • Zwischen Tal und Berg der Welle (1917)
  • Stunden in Jahren (1924)


  1. ^ Deutsche Geschichtsquellen des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts (in German). Harald Boldt Verlag. 2004. ISBN 978-3-486-56756-4.
  2. ^ "Friedrich Kayßler". Film Portal. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  3. ^ Neue Deutsche Biographie: Friedrich Kayssler
  4. ^ "Porträt des Schauspielers Friedrich Kayssler by Thomas Staedeli". Retrieved 24 November 2023.
  5. ^ Naimark, Norman M. (1995). The Russians in Germany: A History of the Soviet Zone of Occupation, 1945–1949. Cambridge: Belknap Press. p. 109-110.

External links

This page was last edited on 24 November 2023, at 11:42
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