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23 September 2017

Theo Mann-Bouwmeester

During the Netherlands Film Festival, EFSP presents the Unofficial Dutch Film Star Postcards Festival. Today's spotlight is on Dutch stage and film actress Theo Mann-Bouwmeester (1850-1939), born in a famous Dutch stage family and sister of Louis Bouwmeester. Inspired by Sarah Bernhardt, she had her breakthrough in 1880. From then on she was known for her wide repertoire, from classical tragedies to contemporary pieces. ’The Grand Dame of the Dutch stage’ also appeared in several Dutch silent films often directed by her son Theo Frenkel Sr. In 1926 she said farewell to the stage after playing her most famous role, Liane Orland in Henry Bataille's The Child of Love, in 67 cities.

Theo Mann Bouwmeester in Het kind van de liefde
Dutch postcard by Koninkl. Nederl. Boek- en Kunsthandel M.M. Couvée, Den Haag (The Hague). Photo: publicity still for the stage production of Het kind van de liefde (L'Enfant de l'amour/The Child of Love) by Henry Bataille.

Passionate, loving and suffering women


Theodora Antonia Louisa Cornelia Bouwmeester was born in Zutphen, The Netherlands, in 1850. She was the daughter of the actors Louis Frederik Johannes Rosenveldt and Louisa Francina Maria Bouwmeester, who happened to be on tour when their daughter was born. ‘Doortje’ was born into the most important Dutch actors family and the legendary Louis Bouwmeester was her elder brother.

Doortje made her debut as a six-year-old in the stage company of her father. She continued to play small stage parts and at 17 she married musician Maurice Frenkel, with whom she would have four sons.

At 23 however, she was a widow and she decided to continue earning the money for her family as an actress. Initially, her stage career was not remarkable while she performed in melodramas and farces. In 1880, she saw a stage performance by Sarah Bernhardt in Amsterdam and ‘la divine Sarah’ became her great source of inspiration.

That same year, Theo Bouwmeester experienced her breakthrough to the main public with the title role in the French comedy Froufrou by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy and in the following years she became the grand Dame of the Dutch theatre. She was the Dutch performer in excellence of passionate, loving and suffering women – especially in great roles as Marguerite Gauthier, Maria Stuart and La Tosca.

She had a wide repertoire, from classical tragedies to contemporary pieces. From 1885 on, she was connected to the prestigious Koninklijke Vereeniging Het Nederlandsch Toneel (The Royal Dutch Theatre). In 1920, she participated in an actors strike and this would trigger the end of her career. In 1926, she said farewell in one of her popular roles, Liane Orland in Henry Bataille's Het kind van de liefde (The Child of Love).

Theo Mann Bouwmeester in Het kind van de liefde
Dutch postcard by Koninkl. Nederl. Boek- en Kunsthandel M.M. Couvée, Den Haag (The Hague). Photo: publicity still for the stage production of Het kind van de liefde (The Child of Love). It was a scene from the third act.

Directed by her son


Theo Mann-Bouwmeester played in five silent films of which four were directed by her son, Theo Frenkel Sr. In her first film, Koning Oedipous/King Oedipus (1912), she played Queen Jocasta opposite her bother Louis Bouwmeester in the title role.

Six years later, her son directed her and her brother Louis Bouwmeester in Pro domo (Theo Frenkel, 1918) also with their niece Lily Bouwmeester. She had a supporting part in Helleveeg/The She-Devil (Theo Frenkel, 1920) featuring Mien Duymaer van Twist.

When her son started his own film company in Germany, she appeared in his Judith (Theo Frenkel, 1923) with Helena Makowkska. Her last film was Frauenmoral/Women's Morals (Theo Frenkel, 1923), again starring Helena Makowkska and Oscar Marion.

Theo Mann-Bouwmeester was married three times and thus performed under different names. Chronologically, she performed as Doortje Bouwmeester, Doortje Frenkel-Bouwmeester, Théo Brondgeest-Bouwmeester and Théo Bouwmeester) but she is best known under the name she used during her last marriage with the musician and composer Gottfried Mann.

Since 1950, the Theo d'Or prize has been awarded to the best female lead in the Dutch stage season every year. Another award named after her is the Theo Mann-Bouwmeester ring. This ring designed by Jan Eisenloeffe was donated to her by admirers in 1911. In 1934, Mann-Bouwmeester donated the ring to Else Mauhs, who was the most outstanding Dutch actress in her eyes. After that, the Theo Mann-Bouwmeesterring was worn by the Dutch actresses Caro van Eyck, Annet Nieuwenhuijzen, Anne Wil Blankers, Ariane Schluter and since 2017 by Halina Reijn.

Theo Mann Bouwmeester had four sons from her first marriage to Maurits Frenkel, including actor and film director Theo Frenkel sr. Actor Theo Frenkel Jr. was her grandson. There were many tragedies in her life, including the early deaths of her eldest and youngest sons. Her third son, Louis, died in 1900 at the age of 31.

Theo Mann Bouwmeester in Het kind van de liefde
Dutch postcard by Koninkl. Nederl. Boek- en Kunsthandel M.M. Couvée, Den Haag (The Hague). Photo: publicity still for the stage production of Het kind van de liefde (The Child of Love). It was a scene from the third act.

Sources: HHJ de Leeuwe (Huygens.ing – Dutch), Piet Hein Honig (Acteurs – en Kleinkunstenaars-Lexicon – Dutch), Een levenlang theater (Dutch), Wikipedia (Dutch) and IMDb.

22 September 2017

Henkie Klein

Every year in early autumn, the Dutch film industry and public gather at the Netherlands Film Festival (NFF). Also this year, EFSP presents its own Unofficial Netherlands Film Star Postcards Festival from 20 to 29 September. Today in the spotlight: little Henkie Klein (1921-ca. 1993), who was a child actor in German and Dutch films of the silent era. He was called the 'Dutch Jackie Coogan'.

Henkie Klein
Dutch postcard by B. Brouwer, Amsterdam. Photo: Bernard Eilers, Amsterdam. Collection: Geoffrey Donaldson Institute.

Dream World


Henkie Klein (sometimes written as Klyn or Kleinman) was born in Amsterdam, The Netherlands in 1921. He was the son of film director Henk Kleinman(n). Some sources say Kleinman senior was Dutch, other sources say he was German born.

Kleinman sr. was the producer and co-director of the German-Dutch film Die Fahrt ins Verderben/Op hoop van zegen (Henk Kleinman, James Bauer, 1924). This was the second film version of Op hoop van zegen/On hope of blessing, a classic Dutch fisher drama written by Herman Heijermans in 1900.

The success of the production lead to another film based on a play by Heijermans, Die vom Schicksal Verfolgten/Droomkoninkje/Little Dream King (Henk Kleinman, 1926) with Wilhelm Dieterle (aka William Dieterle) and Aud Egede Nissen. Little Henkie played the lead of a boy born with a clubfoot who creates his own dream world.

A year earlier Henkie had made his film debut as the Berlin street boy Bolleken in Goldjunge/Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht/Golden Boy (Henk Kleinman, 1925) with Grete Reinwald and Carl Auen. Both films are now presumed missing.

Henkie Klein
Dutch postcard printed by B. Brouwer, Amsterdam. Photo: Bernard F. Eilers.

Glimpse


At the age of 9, Henkie Klein played in the melodrama Zeemansvrouwen/Seamen's Wives (Henk Kleinman, 1930), based on a play by Herman Bouber, author of popular plays like De Jantjes/The Tars and Bleeke Bet/Pale BethZeemansvrouwen should have been the first Dutch sound film with some songs. Possibly because of a lack of money, it became the last Dutch silent feature film.

The prints have been restored by the former Dutch Filmmuseum (now Eye Institute) and reviewer rohitnnn writes at IMDb: "Some of the shots in the film are truly exquisite, and though the story is almost entirely predictable, the film is eminently watchable as it shows us a glimpse of the society in a country that otherwise remains at the periphery of European cinema."

Zeemansvrouwen/Seamen's Wives was one of the most popular films of that year in the Amsterdam cinemas, but Henkie would only act in one more film by his father, Hollands jeugd/Dutch Youth (Henk Kleinman, 1934). There is little know about this production. Kleinman senior also directed two other films, Zelfkant/Fag-end (Henk Kleinman, 1931), a short promotion film for the association for Help for Uninhabited, and the short Oudjes/Oldies (Henk Kleinman, 1936) with Louis van Dommelen, Riek Kloppenburg and August Kiehl.

In 1934, Dutch film weekly Het Weekblad Cinema en Theater published a small article about Henkie: "In the last few years, we did not hear much of the young Dutch film star Henkie Klein. After his outstanding role in the Dutch film Droomkoninkje, he completely disappeared. This is probably because his father, director Henk Kleinman, does not get any more films to direct. Henkie visits the primary school in Amsterdam. He has almost become a Henk now."

In Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad, Henk van Gelder wrote in 2003 about what happened to Henk Kleinman senior. Documents from film historian Egbert Barten show that Kleinman joined the NSB in 1934 and the Reichsfilmkammer in 1937 to be able to work in Germany. During the war he worked - again as Henk Kleinmann - in Germany for a small bureau that selected suitable German films for The Netherlands. He died in 1944 (other sources say 1945) without making another film in Germany. His train was bombed by allied forces and he died in a hospital in Berlin.

An what happened to his son Henkie? Van Gelder cites theatre historian Piet Hein Honig who said that Henk Klein passed away circa 1993. Van Gelder contacted Henkie's daughter, but she just gave him information about her grandfather.

In 2003, Zeemansvrouwen/Seamen's Wives was studied by lip readers and new film texts by Lodewijk de Boer were dubbed by actors like Huib Broos, Jeroen Krabbé, Nelly Frijda en Bram van der Vlugt. Henny Vrienten composed a new musical score for this film experiment. That same year, this final sound version was screened during the Biënnale in the Filmmuseum in Amsterdam.

Henkie Klein
Dutch postcard printed by B. Brouwer, Amsterdam. Photo: Bernard F. Eilers.

Sources: Henk van Gelder (NRC Handelsblad - Dutch), Peter Bosma (Dutch), Mariska Graveland (De Filmkrant - Dutch), Rohitnnn (IMDb), Dutch Film Angle, Wikipedia and IMDb.

21 September 2017

Fanfare (1958)

During the Netherlands Film Festival, EFSP presents the Unofficial Dutch Film Star Postcards Festival. One of the classics of the Dutch cinema is the comedy Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958). The film was entered into the 1959 Cannes Film Festival. With 2,6 million visitors it is the second biggest box office hit in the history of the Dutch cinema.

Hans Kaart in Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard by Uitg. Takken, Utrecht, no. 3796. Photo: Jutka Mol-Rona / Sapphire Film Productie. Publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Hans Kaart.

Fanfare, Arena cinema
Dutch postcard by A. de Herder, Rotterdam. The Arena Cinema was located at the Kruiskade, Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The presented film was the Dutch comedy Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958), starring Hans Kaart.

Classic Dutch Comedy


Fanfare (1958) is a classic Dutch comedy film of the 1950s directed by Bert Haanstra. The film was entered into the 1959 Cannes Film Festival and the 1st Moscow International Film Festival.

Fanfare belongs to the milestones of Dutch film history. With over 2,6 million cinema visitors it is the second most successful Dutch film of all time, only surpassed by Paul Verhoeven's Turks Fruit/Turkish Delight (1973) with Rutger Hauer and Monique van de Ven.

Fanfare was filmed in the village of Giethoorn, in the film the fictional place of Brederwiede, a typical 1950s village, with canals instead of roads.

The scenario was written by director Bert Haanstra and journalist/author Jan Blokker. The music was composed by Jan Mul and was performed by the Concertgebouworkest.

The story: after a fight between the two leading musicians (Hans Kaart and Bernard Droog) the brass band in a small village splits up into two separate bands. They both want to win a contest and will do anything to prevent the other band from winning it.

There is also a love story: the young policeman (Wim van den Heuvel) and the girl (Ineke Brinkman) are both children of one of the band leaders.

At the end of the film, the two rival brass bands end up on a music tournament. The two pieces of music of the rival brass bands are combined by a planned coincidence. Haanstra filmed this competition on a meadow in Diever. He used musicians of various corps from the Diever region as a figurant.

The film was Bert Haanstra's feature film debut and is unique in the Dutch cinema. The cost was 450 thousand guilders, but the film raised 1.2 million guilders.

Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard van Leer's Fotodrukind. N.V., no. 659, sent in 1960. This the brassband which performed in Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958).

Andrea Domburg in Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard by Uitg. Takken, Utrecht, no. 3792. Photo: Jutka Mol-Rona / Sapphire Film Productie. Publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Andrea Domburg.

Ineke Brinkman


Dutch actress and film actress Ineke Brinkman (1934) was active in the Netherlands and Norway. She studied acting with actor Bernard Droog and at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.

In 1954, she made her stage debut in Summer and Smoke by Tennessee Williams. In 1958 she played a role in the popular film Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Hans Kaart, Bernard Droog, Andrea Domburg and Wim van den Heuvel.

After a fight the brass band (in Dutch: fanfare) in the small village of Giethoorn splits up into two separate bands. They both want to win a contest and will do anything to prevent the other band from winning it.

In 1960 Brinkman received a prize for her role in the play Five Finger Exercise by Peter Shaffer. Brinkman married a Norwegian in 1958 and soon she moved to Norway. There she went to direct amateur plays and acted at the National Theater and Det norske teatret in Oslo.

In 1977 she founded a cabaret which still exists. She returned in 1984 to the Netherlands for a short time and appeared on TV in the comedy series Schoppentroef/Spades trump (Bram van Erkel a.o., 1984) with Gerard Cox and she also acted in a stage production.

Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel in Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard by Int. Filmpers (IFP), Amsterdam, no. 1920. Photo: publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel.

Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel in Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard by Uitg. Takken, Utrecht, no. 3794. Photo: Jutka Mol-Rona / Sapphire Film Productie. Publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958)Dutch postcard by Int. Filmpers (IFP), Amsterdam, no. 1920. Photo: publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel.

Wim van den Heuvel


Dutch actor Wim van den Heuvel (1928) was the Jeune Premier of the classic Dutch feature film Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958). He played police officer Douwe, who is in love with Marije (Ineke Brinkman).

Fanfare made him well known in the Netherlands and he appeared in many TV plays and series. On stage he performed at the theatre companies Puck, Ensemble, De Nederlandse Comedie, Toneelgroep Centrum, De Haagse Comedie and Het Nationale Toneel.

Films in which he appeared are Kermis in de regen/Fair in the Rain (Kees Brusse, 1962), Ongewijde aarde/Unconsecrated Earth (Jef van der Heijden, 1967) with Ton Lensink, and Minoes/Miss Minoes (Vincent Bal, 2001) starring Carice van Houten.

Wim van den Heuvel was married to actress Karin Haage and since 1972 to actress Guusje Westermann. The actor André van den Heuvel is his brother.

Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel in Fanfare (1958)
Dutch postcard by Int. Filmpers (IFP), Amsterdam, no. 1932. Photo: publicity still for Fanfare (Bert Haanstra, 1958) with Ineke Brinkman and Wim van den Heuvel.


Trailer Fanfare (1958). Source: indebioscoop (YouTube).


Impressions of the shooting of Fanfare. Source: PunterRadio1 (YouTube).

Sources: Wikipedia (Dutch) and IMDb