Stephan Pflicht: The Gerhard-Winkler-Chronicle

I. Childhood and youth

Eltrnhaus1906 Gerhard Winkler was born as the only son of the locksmith Franz Winkler and his wife Emma, née Geisler, on 12th September in Rixdorf near Berlin, Münchner Straße 10 - from 1912 Neukölln; now Berlin-Tempelhof, Flughafenstrasse.

1912 His mother and father stem from Silesia and play family music. They both have good singing voices and his father also playing the zither. They support their son's apparent musical talent and buy a piano for him.

1913 at the primary school, where Gerhard Winkler has been going since 1912, a music teacher supports his love of music over and above normal lessons, giving him private tuition and plays the organ together with him. Gerhard Winkler composes his first song with his own words: a song for zither called An meinen Buchfink .

Eltern1916 The local vicar notices the boy's good soprano voice during childrens' services and so Gerhard Winkler joins the choir of the Christuskirche in Neukölln. Gerhard Winkler asks for an audition with Professor Hugo Rüdel, who conducts the Berliner Hof- und Domchor, (cathedral choir) and is accepted.

1918 Early in the year the Berliner Hof- und Domchor goes on concert tour in Switzerland. Gerhard Winkler belongs to the singers chosen for the tour.

1919 during the early post-war years Gerhard Winkler sings with the children's choir of the opera house in Berlin »Unter den Linden«, participating in such operas as »Carmen«, »Der Wildschütz«, »Königskinder« and »Der Evangelimann«. This will be the foundation of his love of opera, awakening his ambition of becoming a singer.

1920-21 Gerhard Winkler is confirmed on 22nd September in the Dreifaltigkeitskirche (Trinity Church) in Berlin. His voice breaks, putting an end to his choir singing and his parents press him to take up a serious career. In view of his musical talent he is to be apprenticed to a piano maker and instrument dealer. During a visit to the company his father realises how physically strenuous piano transporting is. He doesn't want to put his son to this and decides to send him into the trade of music supply.

Gerhard Winkler takes up his apprenticeship with the Berlin music publisher Richard Birnbach, going on to join the retailer and publisher Robert Rühle after a few months, where he is employed as apprentice from 1st October 1920 to 30th September 1922.

1922 On 1st October Gerhard Winkler starts working as assistant for his master on a half day basis, thus being given the opportunity of pursuing his private music studies in the afternoons. He now pays regular visits to the Englersche Konservatorium at Zossener Strasse 55 and studies piano and violin under Professor Richard Engler as well as music theory and composition under Professor Friedrich Hoyer.

1923 On 14th April the students of the academy give a concert in the Askanische Gymnasium (Askan High School) in Berlin, where the chamber music suite Im Maien is played, including the movements Springendes Bächlein, Blütenduft and Abschied. This is the first public performance of a Gerhard Winkler composition.

On 31st August Gerhard Winkler leaves the retailer and publisher Robert Rühle in order to dedicate himself solely to his musical education at the Englersche Music Academy.

Attempts at establishing himself with choir and piano music fail so that Gerhard Winkler turns to music for dance and entertainment.

1924-30 Gerhard Winkler himself described this period in his life as the years of apprenticeship and travel. He seeks to prove himself in practise and takes every opportunity of playing in Berlin pubs and taverns and at private celebrations, collecting experience on the piano. He also studies the »Kinothek«, a collection of themes edited by Guiseppe Becce, composer and musical director, to accompany silent movies and he uses this experience as a pianist in silent movie cinemas.

Gerhard Winkler then works as pianist and composer in spa orchestras, dance bands, café and bar ensembles, as for example the Binz spa orchsetra on Rügen and soon after his own band in the Weinhaus Traube and the Arcadia Bar in Essen. He is introduced to the famous dance and show orchestra Hans Bund and Bernhard Etté and composes arrangements for them from his unpublished dance composition Trance Blues .

His first MotorcycleAt the age of 18 Gerhard Winkler buys his first motor bike in Essen, a 350 ccm engine, which he proudly describes in his autobiographical sketches.

He is asked to play on the Island of Norderney, in Mannheim, Elberfeld, Wiesbaden and Mainz. When Julian Fuh's orchestra plays in nearby Frankfurt, Gerhard Winkler travels there especially to learn the so-called jazz symphonic style of this orchestra.

The first print editions of Gerhard Winkler's compositions were the waltz songs In meinem Herzen klingt ein kleines Lied and Heut ist uns alles egal, published in 1930 by F.Marxen in Mainz.

1931 After having got into contact with the Berlin music publisher Ernst Wengraf, for whose Monopol_Liederverlag he writes several orchestra arrangements as well as some of his own songs, Gerhard Winkler returns to Berlin. Here he has his first big success with the students' song potpourri in three quarter time Es zogen drei Burschen, which appears in print just like his foxtrott Ein Glas voll mit Wein, published by the Monopol-Liederverlag.

Gerhard Winkler also leads a dance band, works as cabaret piano player and accompanies songs, appearing with, e.g. Otto Reutter, Claire Waldorf, Martha Hühner and Hedda Herrnfeld.

GW and his combo

Stephan Pflicht: The Gerhard-Winkler-Chronicle

II. First success

1932-33 In Berlin Gerhard Winkler makes himself a name arranging music and works for such well-known orchestras as Paul Godwin, Mitja Nikisch, Ilja Livschakoff and Adolf Ginsburg as well as for various music publishers such as Adolf Fürstner, Efi-Ton-Verlag, Edition Eichler & Tetzlaff and the Bohème Verlag in Vienna.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Drum, Kinder, macht's nur so wie ich
Die Rolltreppe
Die Kuckucksuhr
Glücks-Tango play
Fritz, was ist mit dir heut los
Unser Rheinländer
Rote Rosen, blauer Flieder

1934-35 Gerhard Winkler writes the music for Carl Boese's films »Meine Frau, die Schützenkönigin« with the songs Bayrischer Dirndl-Walzer play and Die Liebe müsste wie ein Märchen sein and »Der Schrecken vom Heidkrug« with the songs Im Wald, im grünen Wald play and Mein kleines Frühlingslied.

Ralph Maria SiegelHis slow waltz Ein Lied ohne Ende play, sung by the well-known radio and record tenor Herbert Ernst Groh, marks the beginning of his musical collaboration and life long friendship with Ralph Maria Siegel, who is to write many of the texts for his successful songs.

Wanting to increase his knowledge of music theory Gerhard Winkler joins a special class of the outstanding music teacher Gustav Bumcke at the Sternsche music academy in Berlin from October 1934 to February 1935.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Alles wird wieder besser
Bleibe noch ein Weilchen hier
Ein Lied, das einst die Mutter sang
Ein blonder Schlagzeugmann
Schöne Argentina play
So lustig wie heut sind wir selten
Wenn der Willi mit der Lilli sonntags tanzen geht play
Ein bißchen Liebesglück
Spanisches Blut play
Eine kleine Frage play
Sternennacht play
Träumst du von Hawaii, mein Liebling play
In Santa Fé

1936 The Berlin music publisher Paul Schmidt, who had already printed various arrangements and compositions by Gerhard Winkler in 1934, publishes »Klänge aus aller Welt« (Sounds from all over the world), a series of little concert pieces which was to grow up to a number of 15 works by 1940, with Wiener Humor play as No. 1 and Spanische Orangen
play as No. 2 and Neapolitanisches Ständchen play as No. 3, which quickly become popular and are soon a world wide success, as well as Mondnacht am La Plata as No. 4 .

With this series Gerhard Winkler proves that he is especially qualified for light concert music and that he has a special talent for folkloristic effects, particularly for Italian colour.

Wilhelm Gebauer's Leipziger Musikverlag publishes Gerhard Winkler's SO (Salon Orchester) arrangement of »In München steht ein Hofbräuhaus«, the light waltz written in this year by Wiga-Gabriel , words by Klaus S. Richter and Fritz Reiter, which is known all over the world today.

Some of Gerhard Winkler's compositions are published by large houses in Italy, e.g. Bei Tanzmusik im Strandhotel play and Mondlicht , published by Sterbini & Co. and El Picador by Piero Leonardi.

This year also sees the beginnings of co-operation with the singer Rudi Schuricke, who records the foxtrot Bei Tanzmusik im Strandhotel, the slow waltz Der Tag geht zur Ruh play and the tango song Italienische Nacht play. During the next 20 years Rudi Schuricke makes numerous Gerhard Winkler compositions popular.

Rudi Schuricke and GW

The journal »Unterhaltungsmusik« ("Light music") reports on Gerhard Winkler's specific work for advertising films in the thirties:

»He was given a task demanding special aptitude: the advertising film. The essence of this is conciseness and the power of persuasion on the shortest yardage. Obviously, music can be a great support.«

Within two years Gerhard Winkler writes the music for more than three hundred advertising films. These include a film made for South America. Winkler had to compose music with a South American atmosphere. It was a great compliment to his talent asking Winkler to write music, say, for people in Buenos Aires or Rio in a language familiar to them.

The last big assignment was the musical supervision of the first all-evening advertising film for the Auto-Union »Jahr der Arbeit - Jahr des Erfolgs« ("Year of work - year of success") first released in early December in Berlin.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Natascha, du schwarzes Mädel aus dem Kaukasus play
Kaffeeklatsch play
Stilles Tal im Sonnenschein play
Träumen, immer nur träumen play
EI Paraiso
Travesura play
Karneval in Sevilla play
Immer lustig, Weanerleut play
Manon play
Spielmanns Lied play
Sonnenschein liegt auf Neapel
Don Pedro play

1937 The tango song 0 mia bella Napoli (Straßensänger von Neapel) play with words by Ralph Maria Siegel, is Gerhard Winklers second hit. Tino Rossi, the famous French chansonnier achieves world fame for this song in 1938, singing in the Berlin »Scala« to frenzied applause.

Gerhard Winkler writes the music to Heinz Helbig's Film »Monika«, released in 1938, including the songs Puppen-Parade play, Sehnsucht nach der Heimat, Tanze und sing play and Irgendwo auf Erden.

The series »Klänge aus aller Welt« is continued with Japanisches Teehaus play as No. 5, Ungarland play as No. 6, Sizilianisches Ständchen play as No. 7 and Ouverture romanesque play as No. 8 .

The following compositions also appear in print:

Zärtlich klingt ein Liebeslied play
Spiel, Zigeuner play
Donna Chiquita play
Bella Pepita play
Wenn Du lachst, schöne Frau play
Musik hat mich verliebt gemacht play

1938 On 10th March Gerhard Winkler marries Edith Haase, daughter of a cabinet maker, in Berlin-Lichtenfelde. He had been introduced to her in the house of his Berlin publisher Erwin Paesike, whose sister-in-law was married to one of Edith Haase's brothers.

In June the Schuricke Trio records Gerhard Winkler's composition 0 mia bella Napoli under the title Straßensänger von Neapel play which, together with the French text version sung by Tino Rossi, leads to the great popular success of this song.

During the next few years Scampolo play becomes a standard piece for light concert music.

After many successes Peter Igelhoff, bar singer, pianist and composer; creates his version of Gerhard Winkler's chanson Das Nachtgespenst play , again becoming very popular. Ralph Maria Siegel also wrote the words to this song.

The series »Klänge aus aller Welt« is continued with No. 9, Holländischer Holzschuhtanz play, No. 10 Toulouse play, as No. 11 Andalusischer Tanz play as well as No. 12 Schottischer Dudelsack.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Vergangene Zeit play
Rätsel der Liebe play
Dorita play
Stelldichein im Wienerwald
La Tarentina play
Der Geige Liebeslied play
Blumen aus Florenz
Senkt sich die Nacht übers Tal play
Al fine play
In einer kleinen Winzerstube play
Hinter einer Düne play
Wenn im Tanzcafé Musik erklingt play
In Portugal play
Im Herbst (Suite)
Treue Liebe play
Ja, das Tempo von heut play
Schlittenfahrt play

1939 Inspired by the Italian Melos Gerhard Winkler composes Wenn in Florenz die Rosen blühn
play, for a text written by Ralph Maria Siegel. It was sung by Ernst Groh and was also soon very popular. Ralph Maria Siegel also wrote the words for Der kleine Postillion play.

During the following years Frühling in der Toskana play became a standard piece for light concert music.

With Santa Maria play Winkler starts a second series of little concert pieces, »Eine Konzertfolge von Gerhard Winkler«, published by Leipziger Musikverlag N.Simrock, similar to the series »Klänge aus aller Welt«.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Don Diego
Vergib play
Turnier- Tango play
Kieler Sprotten
Española play
Buenos Aires play
Das Lied der Nacht
Süße kleine Henriett' play
Böhmische Bauernhochzeit play
Hexentanz play
Kleine Sennerin play
Georgine play
Meisterschafts- Tango play

Stephan Pflicht: The Gerhard-Winkler-Chronicle

III. War years

1940 The Chianti-Lied play and the Italian style tango hit Frühling in Sorrent play belong to the big joint successes of Gerhard Winkler and his text writer Ralph Maria Siegel and still belong to the international tenor repertoire.

»Klänge aus aller Welt« is completed with No. 13 Blütenfest in Japan play, No. 14 Auf einer Südseeinsel and No. 15 Portugiesischer Fischertanz play.

Ständchen am Morgen play is the name of the second piece in the series »Eine Konzertfolge von Gerhard Winkler«, which, however, is not continued, presumably because of the war.

Gerhard Winkler 1940On 1st September Gerhard Winkler is drafted into the Wehrmacht. Thanks to the commander of the air base Königsberg in Neumark, who has a liking for him, he is assigned a position in military support. Gerhard Winkler had already been involved in the entertainment programme for the air base before and had dedicated his march Unser Kommandeur play to the then major and later wing commander Herman Kuhrt. His job now is to win well-known artists for social evenings of the air corps and to join in as pianist and conductor himself. It is this position and the proximity to Berlin that allow Gerhard Winkler to maintain close contact to music life in the capital.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Ständchen an Colombine play
Eine Reise nach Hawaii
Wenn ich Urlaub hab' play
Im Kerzenschimmer play
Bunte Palette (Suite)
Rot- Weiß- Grün play
Aladin's Wunderlampe play
Optimismus ist die beste Medizin play


1941 Gerhard Winkler writes a slow waltz for the Swedish baritone Sven Olof Sandberg Und wieder geht ein schöner Tag zu Ende play to the words of Bruno Elsner, whose talent for text writing he had discovered before when he met him in Berlin, where Elsner worked as decorator for a department store. Together with the famous text writer Bruno Balz he writes the slow fox So wird's nie wieder sein play,.created by the famous actress and singer Ilse Werner. These two songs belong to the greatest hits of the forties.

Doing his duty in military support Gerhard Winkler writes a choral piece, Heiliges Vaterland, to the words of Bruno Balz, a »Hymne für Fliegerstimmen und Militärmusik«, which is first performed under his direction by the soldiers and the music corps of the air base at Königsberg/Neumark.

Gerhard Winkler's march Unser Kommandeur play is recorded by the music corps of the air base headquarters Königsberg/Neumark under Fred Fritzlar together with Friedrich Schröder's march »Propeller frei«, also composed for this music corps.

Gerhard Winkler's work for military support also involves the organisation of entertainment programs in which many well-known artists appear, including Käthe Heidersbach from the Berliner Staatsoper, Ilse Werner, Grethe Weiser, Kirsten Heiberg, Tatjana Sais, Lizzi Waldmüller, Theo Mackeben, Friedrich Schröder, Hilde Seipp, Erwin Bootz, Peter Schaeffers, Bruno Balz, Aldo von Pinelli, Klaus S. Richter, Claire Schlichting as well as Otto Stenzel with the Orchestra of the Berliner »Scala« and Willi Schaeffers with his Berliner »Kabarett der Komiker«.

Hermann Frey, the Berlin original who had written many texts for the composer Walter Kollo, wrote the words for Gerhard Winkler's folksy song Im Goldnen Löwen war's zu Sankt Goar play, which belongs to the repertoire of Willy Schneider, a singer still popular today.

Print editions also appear of his compositions:

Wolken über Samland
So allein, schöne Frau play

Es steht ein Schloß im Süden play
O mia bella Napoli (Orchester-Fantasie)

with Magda Hain

1942 In May Gerhard Winkler meets 21 year old Magda Hain, who works for Siemens, sometimes appearing as hobby singer at small events and who sings for injured soldiers. The composer is so impressed by her unspoilt coloratura voice that he persuades her to try her luck as a professional singer and, together with Ralph Maria Siegel, writes a repertoire of songs especially for her.

For a text by Günther Schwenn, with whom he had worked before and with whom he was to work in friendly co-operation for decades to come, Gerhard Winkler writes Mach dir um mich doch bitte keine Sorgen (Ein Brief aus der Heimat) play, sung by Mimi Thoma and also by Lale Anderson, which soon became popular as as »Der tönende Feldpostbrief vom Belgrader Sender« (Musical army postal service letter from radio Belgrade) and which was included in the song collection »Briefe des Herzens« in 1943.

Gerhard Winkler, who has by now been posted to Berlin where he works for the air force film, signs an exclusive contract with Magda Hain on 10th Ocober.

In the same month he conducts Magda Hain's first recording with Die Vöglein im Prater play und dem Casanova-Lied play, which appears in print in 1943.

On 20th December Magda Hain apears at a public concert in the large studio at Berliner Rundfunk, singing these songs conducted by the composer. She is a sensational success.

The following compositions also appear in print :

Unter blühenden Orangen
Erinnerung an Rheinsberg
Froschkonzert play
Hochzeitsreise im Mai

1943-44 Magda Hain gives up her office job to have sufficient time for her singing career and Gerhard Winkler writes the following songs for her Großmütterlein play, Lied der Lerche play, Liebeslied (Es gibt kein Wort dafür) play, Alt-Berliner Kremserfahrt play, Capri-Fischer play, Blau sind die Nächte in Spanien play, Läutet, Glocken der Liebe play, Melodie meiner Träume play, Am Himmel ziehn die Wolken in die Ferne play, Hurra, der Zirkus ist da play und Eine Geige spielt leise von Liebe play, which are all recorded in time.

Gerhard Winkler with Magda HainThe 1943 recording of Capri-Fischer with Rudi Schuricke is one of the most spectacular record successes of the post-war years.

Gerhard Winkler publishes his song collection »Briefe des Herzens« with the three songs Mach dir um mich doch bitte keine Sorgen (Ein Brief aus der Heimat) play, Die alte Laube play und Liebe Mutter, weine nicht, written together with Günther Schwenn just as Wer weiß von uns, was morgen ist play - sung on record by Mimi Thoma - describing the hopeless spirit of the years of »total war«.

Gerhard Winkler goes on tour with Magda Hain for military support in France, Russia, Denmark, Finland and Norway.

In January 1944 Gerhard Winkler conducts Magda Hain's recording of the duos he composed for her with words by Herbert Ernst Groh Wenn die Geigen singen play and Hörst du das Lied der Liebe play.

During the last year of war Gerhard Winkler works in program planning for the army broadcasting station in Berlin.

The following compositions also appear in print :

Sonne des Südens
Tarantella toscana play
Casanova-Lied play

Wenn wir wieder tanzen gehn
Das Leben geht weiter play

1945 Gerhard Winkler witnesses the capture of Berlin from his home in Berlin-Wilmersdorf; Nassauische Straße 61. Soon afterwards he is working for Berliner Rundfunk in Masurenallee, under Soviet administration. He writes music for radio dramas and arrangements for the big orchestra of Berliner Rundfunk, conducted by Otto Dobrindt, occasionally conducting studio recordings and public performances himself.

Berlin Rundfunk OrchesterAt the broadcasting station Gerhard Winkler assigns first artistic functions to the singer Kurt Reimann, who had been persecuted by the Nazis and who was now taking up his interrupted career again, and then appears as conductor or accompanies songs at his concerts.

As musical director Gerhard Winkler writes several numbers for the first night of the Berlin post-war cabaret »Tric-Trac« founded by the text writer Fritz Beckmann in the Astor cinema on the Kurfürstendamm, for example Wenn unsre Träume. This composition and also Die Sprache der Liebe, with words by Günther Schwenn appeared in the Peter Scheffer Musikverlag and belonged to the first music publications after the war

Gerhard Winkler also works as free lance composer in Berlin, appears as pianist in American officers' clubs and composes the music for the comedy »Herzkönig« by Hemut Weiss, Curth Flatow supplying the song texts.

Gerhard Winkler's songs Capri-Fischer and O mia bella Napoli are Nos. 17 and 18 in the 1945/46 hitparade .

Stephan Pflicht: The Gerhard-Winkler-Chronicle

IV. New beginning

1946 On 19th January the big light orchestra of the Berlin Rundfunk under Kurt Reimann plays the first performance of Gerhard Winkler's song Die Gondeln am Lido play in a public concert in Masurenallee, conducted by the composer himself .

On 29th March the first stage performance of Gerhard Winkler's musical comedy »Herzkönig« with Rudolph Platte and Lisa Lesco in the main parts is put on in the Schiffbauerdamm-Theatre, Berlin. The performance has to begin early at 5.30 p.m. because of the power cut-off in the evenings. In consideration of the occupying powers the program is also written in Russian, English and French.

GW with Rudi SchurickeThe play quickly becomes a success, being played on many different German stages.

The overture to »Herzkönig« appears as a separate edition in print as well as the following numbers: Einmal etwas Großes erleben, Schweb' ich im Walzer, Was auf dieser Welt passiert, Über allem steht die Liebe und Wie kann ein Mann sich so verändern play.

Gerhard Winkler's song Capri-Fischer reaches No. 1 on the best seller list of 1946/47.

According to STAGMA statistics, later GEMA, there are 12,000 live performances of Capri-Fischer in the time between May 1945 and June 1946 in Germany. Add to this the unknown number of times the record is played on German radio stations in the same period of time.

Print editions also appear of the compositions :

Der erste Sonnenstrahl an deinem Fenster play
Der Herr vom Fenster vis-à-vis play
Rosmarie play

1947 To increase the repertoire of light concert music Gerhard Winkler publishes a collection of 12 little concert pieces with the title »Teekonzert«: In fröhlicher Gesellschaft play, Welke Blätter play, Schneeglöckchen play, Erinnerung an einen Sommertag play, Herbstliche Gedanken play, Bildnis der Madonna play, Tango der Liebe play, Zärtliche Begegnung play, Frühlingswind play, In Gedanken an dich play, Kleine Träumerei play and Toledo play .

Apart from the songs for Kurt Reimann and Rudi Schuricke Gerhard Winkler also composes songs for Magda Hain, of which Möwe, du fliegst in die Heimat play with words by Günther Schwenn becomes very popular, as well as duos for joint recordings with Magda Hain and Rudi Schuricke.

Skandal im Harem play written together with the text writer Ralph Maria Siegel belongs to Gerhard Winkler's greatest post-war hits.

Some of the songs from the musical comedy »So gut wie verlobt« by Gerhard Winkler, which was never put on stage, appear in print: Tanzmusik, Endlich allein play, Wenn bloß nicht die Familie wär', Ich bin nicht reich and Jeder Mann tut mir leid.

Following the success of Gerhard Winkler's musical version of the comedy »Herzkönig« by Helmut Weiss, the story is filmed with Hans Nielsen and Lise Lesco in the main parts. Gerhard Winkler writes the songs for this film produced by the author, Ich bin heut so vergnügt and Wer denkt in seiner Hochzeitsnacht ans Schlafen, which are also published as a booklet, together with the songs both from the stage production and the film: Schweb' ich im Walzer, König deines Herzens and Ja, die Gräfin Melanie (Tratsch- Terzett).

Starting in September, Rudolph Platte produces the en-suite performances of the musical comedy in his private theatre »Berliner Volksbühne«.

To distinguish himself as stage composer after the success of his musical comedy »Herzkönig« Gerhard Winkler starts work on the composition of a big operetta with the working title »Land ohne Musik«, later appearing under the Titel »Premiere in Mailand«.

Gerhard Winkler's song Capri-Fischer stays No. 1 on the 1947/48 hitparade and becomes a world success.

Print editions also appear of the compositions :

Mutterhände play
Liebesruf der Amsel play
Schenk mir deine Liebe, Signorina play
Musik hat mich glücklich und reich gemacht
Flocken im Wind play
Wenn die Schwalben ziehn play
Und wieder wird es Frühling sein play

Der S
ommer ging vorbei play
Warum läßt du mich so allein play

GW as conductor
1948 As part of the charity performance organised by the paper the »Telegraf« in aid of needy homecomers, old people and destitute children on 30th May, Gerhard Winkler conducts the premiere of his concert overture Premierenstimmung in the Corso theatre in Berlin, which appears in print in 1951.

Ralph Maria Siegel establishes his own publishing company, whose first publication is Gerhard Winklers foxtrot Tegernsee with words by Ralph Maria Siegel.

Gerhard Winkler composes the music for Carl Boese's film »Beate« with the songs Ich bin nicht liebeskrank and Traum und Wirklichkeit, as well as the music for the film »Vor uns liegt das Leben«, produced by Günther Rittau, which the composer then rearranged for his Oceana-Suite play , which did not go into print.

A collection of 5 sailors' songs by Gerhard Winkler appears in print under the title »Auf allen sieben Meeren« with words by G. V. Otten: An der scharfen Ecke von St. Pauli play, Auf allen sieben Meeren play, Erst einmal ganz sachte play, Die Schwarze Jenny and Heini Bumm play.

Gerhard Winkler's titles Capri-Fischer, Skandal im Harem and Möwe, du fliegst in die Heimat are Nos. 3, 10 and 11 on the 1948/49 hitparade.

A print editions also appears of his composition :

Die Gitarre spielt ein Lied

1949 Over a million print copies of Gerhard Winkler's number one Capri-Fischer have been sold by now in spite of the paper shortage of the post-war years, not counting the additional unknown amount of pirate copies.

In April Gerhard Winkler buys a house in Neuhaus on the Schliersee and moves from Berlin to Upper Bavaria in September.

With the help of his new partner Traudl Stridde, who is later to become his second wife, the so-called "Winkler-Alm develops into a friendly venue for many celebrities from show business.

Gerhard Winkler is divorced on 23rd July in Berlin. Edith Winkler marries the composer and conductor Hans Carste in 1953. Gerhard Winkler and his text writer Ralph Maria Siegel land another Italian hit with the tango Mandolino, Mandolino (In Santa Lucia).

Gerhard Winkler composes the music for the film »Das Geheimnis des Hohen Falken«, produced by Christian Hallig, which is first shown in early 1950.

On 21st October Gerhard Winkler is elected active member of the advisory council of the GEMA, maintaining this position until 1950.

On 27th December Gerhard Winkler's operetta »Premiere in Mailand« is first performed on Hessischer Rundfunk (Hessian Radio), Frankfurt, under the musical direction of Erich Börschel. Only a few months later this work, originally called »Land ohne Musik« and later renamed »Glück nach Noten« saw its premiere on stage in Dortmund.

A booklet with titles from this operetta appear, containing: Wir leben nur einmal play, Es ist nur ein Schritt von hier, Heut kommt es auf den Rhythmus an, Es blühen fremde Blumen, Wenn Liebe spricht, Wenn Mädchen nachts in ihren Bettchen träumen and Musik im Blut play.

The following compositions also appeared in print:

Frühling in Paris play
Hochzeit in der Pußta play

Eine Geige spielt leise von Liebe
Wenn die Lagune träumt

1950 After the radio performance of Gerhard Winkler's operetta »Premiere in Mailand« in Frankfurt the NWDR in Cologne broadcasts a new radio adaptation by Kurt Feltz on 24th January conducted by Franz Marszalek.

The first performance of the operetta »Premiere in Mailand« is put on stage in Dortmund at the Städtische Bühnen on 12th February.

It is also played in many other German theatres and also sees numerous radio productions.

On 24th March Gerhard Winkler becomes a member of the appraisement committee, the later valuation committee of the GEMA and retains this function until 1956. He also becomes ordinary member of the advisory board of the GEMA and retains this position until 1953.

A lack of legal aid for the German author after the lost war is the reason why foreign royalties for Gerhard Winkler's world hit Capri-Fischer are not paid. This is why neither composer nor text writer ever see a penny for the countless records sold in USA with the American text version of the song.

From 9th to 14th October a convention of the Confédération Internationale des Sociétés d'Auteurs et Compositeurs (CISAC) takes place in Madrid. It is the first international copyright convention after the War allowing German representatives to take part again. Gerhard Winkler is a member of the German delegation.

Gerhard Winkler writes new songs for recordings with Magda Hain to the words of Ralph Maria Siegel, such as Der fröhliche Musikant play and Schäferliebe play, which also appear in print in 1952.

Successful songs published in this year are Ich hab' nur ein Hemd play, Charleston-Charlie play and Ein kleiner Akkordeonspieler play.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Liebe und Leidenschaft play
Avanti, avanti
Veroneser Ständchen play

Ach, Sibylle-bille-bille
Droben bei San Michele
Wenn ich mit dir im Kino bin

Fred Rauch1951 The concert pieces »Premierenstimmung« and »Fest der Freude«, which had already been composed earlier, appear in print. October sees the first co-operation with radio presenter and text writer Fred Rauch, who will belong to Gerhard Winklers closest associates from now on until the composer's death, writing texts for countless songs, most often under his pseudonym Sepp Haselbach and sometimes together with Fini Busch.

Gerhard Winkler's new Italian song Mandolino, Mandolino (In Santa Lucia) is No. 16 on the 1951 hitparade.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Tango Olivia play
Don Alvarez
Mademoiselle, Mademoiselle, Mademoiselle

1952 On 2nd March Gerhard Winkler marries his companion of many years Traudl Stridde, née Neeße, in Schliersee in second marriage. She has two daughters from her first marriage with Diplom-Ingenieur (graduate engineer) Walter Stridde, Barbara and Beatrix.

Gerhard Winkler takes part in the CISAC-Convention in Amsterdam as member of the GEMA from 16th to 21st June.

In early June the composer travels to Denmark and Sweden, where Radio Stockholm invites him to conduct the radio orchestra.

During the following years Gerhard Winkler is guest conductor for Scandinavian and Dutch radio stations many times.

On 22nd July Gerhard Winkler's son Hans born in the second marriage in Neuhaus, Schliersee.

Gerhard Winkler completes the unprinted concert piece Der Sonne entgegen, a fantasy for piano and large orchestra, which was already well-known through numerous radio recordings.

GW as Conductor With the compositions Schütt die Sorgen in ein Gläschen Wein play, Wir sind füreinander bestimmt play, the theme tune for the radio series »Das ideale Brautpaar« for NWDR Cologne, Mütterlein, Frauen und Wein (Italienische Eselsfahrt) play and the Schützenliesl-Polka play Gerhard Winkler lands five new hits this year.



The following compositions also appear in print:

Der fröhliche Musikant play
Schäferliebe play

Herr Mayer wird verlangt play

Böhmische Musikanten
Osterfest in Sevilla
Die Sonne ist untergegangen
Die Gratulanten kommen
Wenn die Großmama erzählt von alten Zeiten
Ich such für mein Motorrad eine Braut
Tausend Märchen in einer Nacht
Peter- Tango
Fridolin der Schlagbassist
Mamma mia, du vergißt mich nicht

1953 On tour in Scandinavia the coloured star Leila Negra sings Gerhard Winkler's song Mütterlein play with such sensational success that it is soon more popular here than in Germany and the name Leila »Mütterlein«(little mother) Negra become a concept. Because of this many singers present this song in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish.

From Sweden the song gets to America where it is called Answer me play, written in English by Carl Sigman and reaching world wide fame especially in the record version sung by Nat King Cole

Gerhard Winkler's musical comedy »Herzkönig« is produced for television by NWDR, Cologne, with Ekkehard Fritsch and Lisa Lesco in the main parts, broadcast on 12th June.

Gerhard WinklerFrom 12th to 21st June Traudl and Gerhard Winkler travel to Italy, to discover the country which the composer had idealised in so many of his works. They go to Lake Constance, Florence. Pisa, Livorno, Sorrent, the Isle of Capri, Rome and the Adriatic.

The Italian song Bella, bella Donna play becomes a great hit as well as the folksy song O Heideröslein play, published under the pseudonym Peter Jan Hansen, which sells more than 200,000 records in a short time and gets a silver disc. Very soon Gerhard Winkler is awarded a golden disc for the sale of 500,000 records of this title.

This song is successful in Holland and the Scandinavian countries, too, and becomes an international hit, mainly thanks to the English recording with Vera Lynn called Now and Forever play as well as the French recording Jolie bruyère with Tino Rossi.

Gerhard Winkler composes the songs Südliche Nächte play, Rosen erblühten, als wir uns fanden play, Nimm mich mit, mit, mit play, Mandolinen der Liebe erklingen play, Italienischer Salat play and the interlude Puppenkarneval play for Robert Adolf Stemmle's musical film »Südliche Nächte«.

Gerhard Winkler travels to Essen for the first showing of the film »Südliche Nächte« on 8th September and celebrates a heart felt reunion with one of the most important stages of his apprenticeship in tender years.

Gerhard Winkler's new song Frauen und Wein (Italienische Eselsfahrt) is No. 21 in the 1953 hitparade.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Prärieritt play
Happy Day play
Barcarole d’amore
Intermezzo pastorale
Ganz unter uns
Spanischer Pfeffer
Windmühlen- Walzer
Die Dorfmusikanten sind da
Horrido (Der Sonntagsjäger)
Der erste Frühling einer großen Liebe
Ich sende mein Herz auf die Reise
Tanz diesen Walzer, Madeleine

1954 The Deutsch Komponistenverband (Association of German Composers) is founded for which Gerhard Winkler works many years as a member of the board of directors

Gerhard Winkler also becomes member of the arbitration committee for GEMA.

Under its American title Answer Me Gerhard Winkler's song Mütterlein reaches the charts on 24th April and belongs to the top Twenty Hits USA 1953-55 and reaches no. 6 on the US hitparade.

After this success Fred Rauch writes a new German text for the song following the American words. Now it becomes popular under its new title Glaube mir play in Germany too. The recording by the blind singer Wolfgang Sauer sells 500,000 times in a short time.

Taking up the successful Italian songs Gerhard Winkler writes Nicolo, Nicolo, Nicolino play together with the text writer Kurt Feltz.

On 1st June Gerhard Winkler establishes The Musikverlag Edition Continent together with August Seith in Munich and is joint partner until the end of 1970.

In June Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on their first ship cruise from Bremen to Genoa.

Inspired by the games of his two-year-old son Hans Andreas, Gerhard Winkler composes the concert piece Kreiselspiel play.

Ernst Marischka produces the singer film »König der Manege« with Rudolf Schock, for which Gerhard Winkler writes the songs Vorhang auf (Artistenmarsch) play and Das Leben ist schön , wenn man richtig verliebt ist play as well as Das alte Lied von Alabama play for Eric Ode's film »An jedem Finger zehn«.

On 4th December Traudl Winkler establishes the Musikverlag Edition Fortuna in Berlin, together with Peter Schaeffer and stays joint partner until 1967.

Gerhard Winkler's Italian song Bella, bella Donna is No. 6 on the 1954 hitparade.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Südliches Temperament
Promenade d’amour
Wenn du auch nicht mehr der jüngste bist
Zigeuner, laß die Geige weinen
Kleine Nachtigall
Der Kuckuck ruft
Zwei blaue Sterne
Heimweh nach Hawaii
Spiel'n Sie Schach
Wenn die Schiffe den Hafen verlassen

1955 Gerhard Winklers new song Zwei Spuren im Schnee play becomes very popular. 300,000 recordings with Vico Torriani are sold in a short time.

Gerhard Winkler publishes »Leckerbissen«, a collection of 8 little concert pieces for accordion or piano.

Geza von Bolvary produces a film of the folk play »Mein Leopold« by Adolf L'Arronge with the same title and Gerhard Winkler writes the music with the songs Und das alles geschah in der Nacht play and So ist es im Leben play.

Mütterlein with a new German text reaches No. 4 on the 1955 hitparade under the title Glaube mir.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Aus den Augen, aus dem Sinn play
Valse Elégie
Meine alte Harmonika
Zwei verliebte Italiener
Ein Häuschen mit Garten
Ein weißes Schiff
Am Sonntag ist Kirchweih
Die große Trommel macht bum-bum
Bleib so wie du bist play

Wenn die Heide schlafen geht
Schwarzwälder Schlittenfahrt

Stephan Pflicht: The Gerhard-Winkler-Chronicle

V. Fruits of success

1956 Gerhard Winkler buys a villa in Berlin-Grunewald, Lassenstr. 4, built around the turn of the century by the architect Alfred Messel, well-known for example for the architecture of the Berlin department store Wertheim, for the Wertheim dynasty.

In May the family moves back to Berlin from Neuhaus am Schliersee.

On 24th May Gerhard Winkler establishes the Transeuropa Bühnen- und Musikverlag (Transeurope stage and musik publishers), which is taken over by Richard Birnbach Musikverlag in 1971.

In this year Gerhard Winkler writes the music for 4 films:

for »Schwarzwaldmelodie« produced by Geza von Bolvary with the songs Abschiedsmelodie (Schwarzwaldmelodie), Dort wo die grünen Tannen stehn play, Schwarzwald, mein Schwarzwald play and Schwarzwald-, Schwarzwald-Mädele play ;

for »Die Rosel vom Schwarzwald« by Rudolf Schündler with the songs Broadway-Melodie play, Ein Schwarzwälder Mädel und ein Schwarzwälder Kirsch play, Erst wenn du in der Fremde bist, Verliebt zu sein, Die verrückte Blasmusik play and Wie ein Schwalbenpaar;

for »Die Stimme der Sehnsucht« with Rudolf Schock, produced by Thomas Engel, with the songs Der Liebe Freud und Leid (Liebeslied) play, Frutti di mare play, He, Borro, he (Esel-Ballade) play, Schenk mir dein Herz, Lucia play and Sonne Italiens play ;

as well as for »Die schöne Meisterin«, a singing film produced by Rudolf Schündler with the songs Alle Verliebten singen, Auch der allerschönste Sommer geht zu Ende, Bier-Walzer play, Dulli-dulli-dulliöh, Hummel-Hummel and Ich trau' mich gar nicht hinzusehn.

On 12th September Gerhard Winkler celebrates his 50th birthday, enjoying great public interest. At this time he is at the height of his popularity. Numerous radio stations and newspaper articles value his compositions highly.

On this occasion he is paid the special honour of being awarded a golden disc as recognition of the great success of his records on Polydor, which include the Capri-Fischer.

in honour of his workGerhard Winkler takes part at the CISAC Convention in the Belgian spa Knokke from 15th to 21st September as representative of GEMA.

On 29th September Gerhard Winkler becomes active member of the GEMA valuation committee and remains in this position.

Gerhard Winkler's new songs Wo, wo, wo liegt Dixieland play and Das Echo vom Königssee play become popular.

Mütterlein reaches No.18 on the 1956 hitparade with a new German text and title Glaube mir.

The following compositions appear in print:

Bärenjagd in Alaska play
Wilde Rose von Arizona
Jeder Tag hat seinen Abend
Wenn nur besser eing'schenkt wär'

1957 Gerhard Winkler's operetta »Die ideale Geliebte« is first performed on 2nd March in Nuremburg on the Städtische Bühnen.

It is then put on stage in many German theatres and produced by numerous broadcasting stations.

In 1958 a single edition of the stage production appears in print including the songs: Pelagua, Ich bin ein Reisender, Caramba, Wir träumen bei singenden Geigen, O Monsieur, Eine Nacht so wie heut, Das Militär, das Militär, Ay, ay, ay, die Sonne brennt sehr (Baumwollpflücker-Lied) and Bella, bella Signorina.

On 3rd April Gerhard Winkler becomes full member of the GEMA valuation committee and remains in this position until 1964. In June/July Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a sea trip from Hamburg to the North Cape.

On 3rd September Gerhard Winkler is awarded the Paul-Lincke ring in the spa town of Hahnnenklee in the Harz. After Friedrich Schröder he is the second composer to be honoured with this award.

Paul-Lincke-RingThe Paul-Lincke ring is a tribute to the work of exceptional composers in light music and is awarded once every two years by the spa town community of Hahnenklee-Bockwiese, now belonging to Goslar, where Paul Lincke spent the last months of his life and where he is buried.

Als To express his gratitude for this honour and in remembrance of his visit to Hahnenklee in the Harz Gerhard Winkler composes Kleine Harzer Suite with the movements Rosenhochzeit in Hahnenklee and Hexentanz auf dem Bocksberg play, which appears in print in 1961.

On 3rd October Gerhard Winkler becomes active member of the GEMA board of directors and maintains this position until 1963.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Die Dicken sind immer gemütlich
Die Schwarzwälder Uhr
Alle Damen fahren gern nach Italien
Auch der Herbst hat seine schönen Tage
Das Glück ist für uns alle da
O Mona, Mona Lisa
Sonny, o Sonny
Die Mondschein-Serenade

1958 Gerhard Winkler writes Ein armer Musikant play for Geza von Bolvary's film »Schwarzwälder Kirsch«.

In February Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a cruise to West Africa.

The composer sells his house in Schliersee, the so-caller "Winkler-Alm" and chooses Berlin as his place of permanent residence.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Skandinavien-Expreß play
Die Schöne von Aranjuez
Wenn die Kastanien blühn
Zwischen Heidekraut und Heiderosen (Anna-Greta)
Das Glückwunschlied
So schön blühn die Rosen nur einmal im Leben
Der alte Kellermeister

1959 From the end of April to the beginning of June Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a banana-boat trip to Ecuador.

Gerhard Winkler spends the summer holidays with his family on the Ligurian Riviera, where he works on his new operetta »Der Fürst von Monterosso«.

An air trip takes Traudl and Gerhard Winkler to the Caribbean and the USA from October to November.

1960 On 19th February Winkler's operetta »Der Fürst von Monterosso« is first performed at the Städtische Bühnen in Augsburg. It is later performed on many German stages. Gerhard Winkler himself conducts the overture to the performance in Augsburg as well as to many of the premières in other theatres, which he generally liked to do when his stage works were performed.

The overture to »Der Fürst von Monterosso« appears in print as a single edition together with the song Ballett im alten Stil: (1) Gavotte a la Rameau play, (2) Valse a la Delibes play, (3) Cancan a la Offenbach play from the operetta.

Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a journey to East Asia during March and April, travelling to India, Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan.

The première of Richard Bush's comedy »Drei Mädchen im Bikini (Liebes-Toto)« at the Theater an der Lutherstraße in Berlin is on 9th June, with music by Gerhard Winkler. It is described as a jolly musical and is a flop.

The following compositions also appear in print::

Harems-Tanz play
Du bist meine stille Liebe
Die Primadonna von der Scala di Milano
Alle Wunder der Welt
Micky's Doll Parade

1961-62 Following the suggestion of Franz Josef Strauß, federal minister of defence, Gerhard Winkler composes the Starfighter-Marsch play for the German Luftwaffe (air force) in honour of the occasion of Chancellor Adenauer's 85th birthday on 6th January in the garden of Palais Schaumburg in Bonn, first performed by the Bundeswehr-Lehrmusikcorps (army music corps).

with Ralph Maria SiegelGerhard Winkler's song 0-3-1-1 Berlin, Berlin play, Berlin appears in print. The composer gives the first records of this song sung by Fred Öldorp to Willy Brand, governing mayor of Berlin.

Gerhard Winkler acquires a summer property in Campione, Tessin, which he discards, however, after three months in order to buy a summer house in Morcote on Lake Lugano.

On the occasion of Hans Carste, composer and conductor, being awarded the Paul-Lincke ring on 2nd September 1961, Gerhard Winkler travels to Hahnenklee. This visit to Hahnenklee in 1959 on the occasion of being awarded the Paul-Lincke ring himself, inspired Gerhard Winkler to write Kleine Harzer Suite, which now appears in print.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Artisten-Ballade (Vorhang auf)
Angelique play

Nimm Platz, mein Schatz
Sei doch nicht so pingelig
Jeder braucht jeden Tag Liebe
Die Wolken kehren nie zurück
Die Glocken von Rom play

1963 Gerhard Winkler composes the music for the CCC Television GmbH films »Casanova wider Willen«, »Liebeshändel in Chiozza« und »Jenny und der Herr im Frack«.

Gerhard Winkler writes the song Caroline play for Werner Jacobs' film »Denn die Musik und die Liebe in Tirol«, which was first shown in early 1964.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Der Pinguin play
Der Turnier-Reiter
Der letzte Fiaker
Miteinander, füreinander play
Geh mit mir durchs ganze Leben
Der fremde Mann vom Montparnasse (King's Alley)
Prinzessin Sonnenschein
Junge Herzen haben Sehnsucht (Gute Reise)
Kerzenserenade (Serenade der Liebe)
Whisky und Pferde
Nah bei dir

GEMA meeting1964 The première of Kurt Longa's pantomime »Blütenkind im Schnee« is on 29th November at the Stadttheater Koblenz with music by Gerhard Winkler.

On 12th December Gerhard Winkler becomes member of the GEMA board of directors and retains this office until 1967.

The following composition also appear in print:

Immer hübsch bescheiden sein play
Drei Schritte weiter
The Merry Old Inn (Das fröhliche alte Gasthaus)

1965 In January Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a cruise to the Caribbean and then continue to visit friends in New York.

Schenk mir ein Bild von dir play sung by Peter Alexander is Gerhard Winkler's next great success.

Print editions also appear of the composition Das Gästebuch sung by Sascha Distel, two concert pieces under the title Träumendes Fischerdorf play and In der Osteria playfrom the orchestra suite An der blauen Adria as well as the overture to the concert »Reise nach dem Süden«.

1966 On 11th February Gerhard Winkler becomes member of the GEMA tariff committee and stays in office until 1967.

Gerhard Winkler takes part at the CISAC Convention from 13th to 18th June as GEMA representative.

In the summer Traudl and Gerhard Winkler travel to Norway and Sweden, where the composer conducts the radio orchestra in Stockholm.

On 12th September Gerhard Winkler celebrates his 60th birthday in Berlin.

with Willy BrandtIn honour of this occasion Gerhard Winkler is awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz (Federal Cross of Merit), in recognition of services to his country and people.

In honour of this anniversary Ariola-Eurodisc produces the LP »Gerhard Winkler Welterfolge« with Kammersängerin Erika Köth and Kammersänger Rudolf Schock as well as the Berliner Symphoniker cunducted by the composer himself.

On 25th December the first program of German television broadcasts the show »Gerhard Winkler gibt sich die Ehre«, produced in October and directed by Fred Kraus in Munich. Appearing in the show are Margrit Schramm, Peter Minich, Guggi Löwinger, Peter Kraus, Claudio Nicolai and also Gerhard Winkler.

Using his successful compositions Neapolitanisches Ständchen and 0 mia bella Napoli (Straßensänger von Neapel) Gerhard Winkler composes an orchestra suite in three movements with the title Ein Tag in Neapel. The new second movement has the title Napoli bei Nacht.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Ein kleiner Schwips play
Dir kann ich doch nicht böse sein
Es stand mal ein Haus irgendwo in Berlin

1967 Together with friends from the Berlin tennis club »Zehlendorfer Wespen« Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a trip to South America from 6th to 31st March, which takes them to Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Montevideo, Punta del Este, Buenos Aires, Santiago de chile and Valparaiso.

In May Gerhard Winkler spends four weeks in the health resort of Bad Mergentheim. Afterwards Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a trip to Norway.

On 22nd June Gerhard Winkler becomes active member of the GEMA board of directors and stays in this office until 1971. At the same time he belongs to the GEMA program committee and also stays in this office until 1971.

Gerhard Winkler's grandson Steffen is born on 30th September in the first marriage of his step daughter Barbara with Rudolf Mielke, later adopted by her second husband Günther Walch.

In March 1968 Traudl and Gerhard Winkler go on a boat trip to the Canaries and to north Africa.

On 20th June Gerhard Winkler again becomes member of the GEMA valuation committee and stays in this office until 1972.

The concert pieces Clarina play and Kreuzfahrt im Mittelmeer play appear in print.

1969-70 Gerhard Winkler sells his villa in Berlin and moves to Zollikon near Zurich in Switzerland. 1970 also sees the building of a house in München Harlaching, which the family plans as a second base. Gerhard and Traudl Winkler

Gerhard Winkler writes the music for Hans Heinrich's film »Klein Erna auf dern Jungfernstieg«, including the songs Jungfernstieg-Marsch play and Tante Frieda macht das schon play.

The following compositions also appear in print:

A Trip in Switzerland play
Rendezvous im Regen
Jeder ist so alt, wie er sich fühlt

1971 The family move into their new second home in München-Harlaching at Whitsun, the house being sold again in1977.

Gerhard Winkler and Magda Hain appear on television again once more together in the series »Stars von damals« of the Süddeutsche Rundfunk in Stuttgart.

Because his health suffered increasingly after the journey to south America in 1967, Gerhard Winkler goes into the Mayo clinic in Wiesbaden on 13th October, where cerebral sclerosis is diagnosed after thorough examinations.

Gerhard Winkler's co-operation in an Austrian TV production in the ORF studio Ronnacher in Vienna with Zarah Leander, Ilse werner, Peter Igelhoff, Hans fritz Beckmann and others is his last public appearance

1972-73 In April and May 1972 Traudl and Gerhard Winkler fly to New York and Hollywood, where they visit their friends Lisa Lesco and Henry Koster.

On 28th June Gerhard Winkler becomes active member of the GEMA valuation committee and stays in this office until 1975.

.1974 sees the composition of Valse Tanja play, which is not printed. This is Gerhard Winkler's last composition, dedicated to his granddaughter Tanja, born on 14th January 1973 in the marriage of his step daughter Beatrix with Bernd Dobler.

The folk song Der Meisterjodler von Daxenbach, written earlier on and sung by Thomas Scholl, is the last print edition of his works, appearing in 1977.

The following compositions also appear in print:

Ich schließ' mein Lebensbuch noch lang nicht ab
Das muß der Sonnenschein in deinen Augen sein

1976 In February Gerhard Winkler acquires a property in Allgäu, where he spends the last months of his life from May to September 1977 at Bremberg, Kempten, being very ill.

On the occasion of his 70th birthday Gerhard Winkler is awarded the silver medal of the department of culture of the Italian foreign ministry in recognition of his special services to culture.

In his covering letter signed on 4th September , Corrado Orlandi Contucci, then ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, says:

»Your many compositions steeped in the great love you have for Italy have been a constant part of the German world of music for 40 years now and have surely deepened the obsession for Italy and the wanderlust to the sunny country of your songs. For this we are very much indebted to you.«

A new dahlia breed is given the name »Gerhard Winkler« in honour of his 70th birthday. Rolf Wagschal, breeder of this new flower from Hamburg writes: »Amongst the hundreds of seedlings of the year 1973 one plant was especially striking because of its beautiful colour. The petals of the big, bright red flower all had a golden tip. It was a hybrid between a Dutch dahlia and one of our own experimental kinds with the result of a considerable improvement in colour in comparison to the mother plant.

After my new breed had successfully passed all examinations I had to give it a name. By chance I heard of Gerhard Winkler's 70th birthday coming up. And since my hobby during my school days before the last war was the popular light and dance music, represented so well by Gerhard Winkler, I decided to name my dahlia after him.«

1977 On 13th May Gerhard Winkler's granddaughter Natalie is born in the marriage of step daughter Beatrix with Bernd Dobler.

After two attacks of pneumonia in June and August, Gerhard Winkler dies - shortly after his 71st birthday - on 25th September at 5.25 a.m in the morning,. in his Allgäu holiday home in Kempten. He is borne to his grave in the Neuer Friedhof by many friends and colleagues expressing their deepest sympathy on 28th September.

In a letter of condolence the senate in Berlin expresses its deepest sympathy at Gerhard Winkler's death, also for the countless people of Berlin, whom the composer gave decades of joy with his rich musical creations:

»Berlin was his home, from here his name spread as composer of countless popular songs, which have long since become evergreens but also as a famous composer of light music throughout the world. Gerhard Winkler will live on in his melodies.«


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