Dietrich, Marlene

(1901-1992)
   actress; best known as the character Lola-Lola in Josef von Sternberg's The Blue Angel. Maria Magdalena Dietrich was born into a middle-class Berlin* family in which her natural father, who died during her childhood, was a police official, her stepfather, killed on the Russian front, was an army officer, and her mother was the daughter of a jew-elry-store owner. In 1921, while studying violin at a Musikhochschule in Wei-mar, she strained a tendon in her left wrist and was forced to abandon the instrument. Failing the same year to gain admittance to Max Reinhardt's* acting school in Berlin, she remained in the capital and supported herself as an adver-tisement model and chorus girl. She was accepted by Reinhardt in 1922, and her stage career began with various bit parts. Her film* debut occurred in 1923 as the somewhat crazy, monocled Lucie in Joe May's Tragodie der Liebe (Trag-edy of love). Playing the role of Lucie with a whiff of bisexuality, she fully ripened a similar character in Sternberg's 1930 film Marokko (for which she received a nomination as Best Actress). Such roles exposed the real Dietrich, whose extravagance and eccentricity—including a monocle—attracted the at-tention of Berlin's artistic community. Briefly retiring from the stage upon the birth of her daughter Maria in 1925, she accepted small parts in G. W. Pabst's* 1925 Die freudlose Gasse (Street without joy) and Arthur Robinson's Manon Lescaut, filmed in 1926; she then appeared briefly in Alexander Korda's 1927 film Eine Dubarry von heute (A Dubarry of today). Seventeen such films ap-peared before her return to the stage with a key role in Mischa Spoliansky's 1928 musical Es liegt in der Luft (It's in the air).
   Spoliansky wrote the music for Georg Kaiser's* 1929 revue Zwei Krawatten (Two neckties). Although Dietrich's part was small, Sternberg was impressed when he saw her. Engaged by Erich Pommer to direct The Blue Angel—among Germany's first and most successful sound films—Sternberg ignored the counsel of advisors and cast Dietrich with Emil Jannings*; the film, enriched by Fried-rich Hollander's music, established her phlegmatic character and won her world fame. In 1930, on the evening that The Blue Angel had its debut in Berlin, she left for Hollywood to fulfill a contract with Paramount and Sternberg. Although she abandoned Paramount in 1936, Dietrich rebuffed a 1937 Nazi appeal to return to Germany. During World War II she entertained American troops, par-ticipated in war-bond drives, and made anti-Nazi broadcasts in German.
   Since her death in May 1992, Dietrich has been subjected to numerous bi-ographies, including a hostile portrait by her daughter, Maria Riva. While the accounts confirm the image of a ruthless and self-absorbed woman given to manipulation, they also attest Sternberg's sense of a talented and hardworking actress. It was her professionalism as much as her glamour that contributed to her myth and set her apart from rivals.
   REFERENCES:Steven Bach, Marlene Dietrich; Otto Friedrich, Before the Deluge; Riva, Marlene Dietrich; Sternberg, Fun in a Chinese Laundry.

A Historical dictionary of Germany's Weimar Republic, 1918-1933. .

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  • Dietrich, Marlene — orig. Maria Magdalene Dietrich born Dec. 27, 1901, Berlin, Ger. died May 6, 1992, Paris, France German U.S. film actress and singer. After joining Max Reinhardt s theatre company in 1922, she appeared in German films and became an international… …   Universalium

  • DIETRICH, Marlene — (1901–1992)    Everything about Marlene Dietrich’s early life was shrouded in a mystery created by press agents and herself, including her age and her parentage. Early biographies list her birth name as Maria Magdelena Dietrich von Losch and have …   Westerns in Cinema

  • Dietrich, Marlene — (1901 1992)    The German born actress and singer was born Maria Magdalena Dietrich in Berlin, Germany, but she adopted Marlene as her stage name. She made a number of successful films in Germany before moving to Hollywood in 1930. There she made …   Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era

  • Dietrich,Marlene — Die·trich (dēʹtrĭk, trĭKH), Marlene. 1901 1992. German born American actress and singer whose first internationally famous role was the sultry voiced temptress in The Blue Angel (1930). * * * …   Universalium

  • Dietrich, Marlene — ► (1902 92) Seudónimo de Marie Magdalene von Losch, actriz y cantante estadounidense. Películas: El ángel azul (1930), El expreso de Shanghai (1932), Sed de mal (1958), entre otras. * * * orig. Maria Magdalene Dietrich (27 dic. 1901, Berlín,… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Dietrich, Marlene —  (1904–1992) German born actress and singer; born Maria Magdalene von Losch …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Dietrich, Marlene — pseud. di Losch, Marie Magdalene von …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Marlene Dietrich — Marlene Dietrich, 1933 Marlene Dietrich (* 27. Dezember 1901 in Schöneberg; † 6. Mai 1992 in Paris; eigentlich Marie Magdalene Dietrich)[1] war eine gebürtige deutsche …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Marlene Dietrich — Dietrich in 1951. Born Marie Magdalene Dietrich 27 December 1901(1901 12 27) Schöneberg …   Wikipedia

  • Marlene Dietrich discography — Marlene Dietrich Marlene Dietrich s recording career spanned sixty years, from 1928 until 1988 . She introduced the songs Falling in Love Again (Can t Help It) (from the film The Blue Angel) and The Boys in the Backroom (from Destry Rides Again ) …   Wikipedia

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