Krystallpalast Varieté

Magazingasse 4

Gelände im Krystallpalast Leipzig um 1900

Site around the Krystallpalast Leipzig, around 1900

»Artistic attractions, musical magic, slapstick entertainment and culinary appetisers« is what the website of the Krystallpalast (lit. crystal palace) Variety Leipzig promisses. The variety theatre complements the diverse and popular cabaret offer which has become a mark of distinction for the city. Also here, in the »theatre of the senses«, traces of a colonial past can be found; although the Krystallpalast variety was only founded in 1997, it invokes the tradition of the variety theatre of the same name founded in 1882, which was located until the Second World War in the Wintergartenstrasse. In this amusement temple for 15000 guests, a group of dancers from the newly acquired colony Cameroon performed, with the chapel of the royal Saxonian infantry regiment playing the Cameroon march.(1)

With amazement the Leipzig Tageblatt(2) reported that the Cameroonian were invited after one of the shows to a spontaneous »bierkommers« (festive gathering) where speeches were held and hats exchanged. Ma-Ka-Oli, the »respect person« of the group and »a respectable land owner in his homeland on the Cameroon river« held the first address with a glass of cognac in the hand, manifesting an »extraordinarily eloquence«. After the first German speaker had emptied his beer, another one wished that the Africans would learn German as fast as they had learned English. Afterwards they sang together, tipsy, »Heil dir im Siegerkranz« and »Wacht am Rhein«.

The author of the articles observed in wonder: »… they are hardly only the [N*] as we associate with the words.« Apparently they were not »wild« enough or too intelligent for him.

  • (1) Vgl. Leipziger Tageblatt, 31.5.1885.
  • (2) Vgl. ebd.
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Above: Wikimedia

»Leipziger Tageblatt« v. 31.05.1885

»Leipziger Tageblatt« v. 31.05.1885