How Is Uwe Doing Now?

Whatever he touches turns to gold: in Frankfurt Uwe stars in Sunset Boulevard as an unsuccessful writer. But when the lights go down, the celebrated musical star thinks nostalgically about his time in Vienna....

Lisa Ulrich, Rennbahn Express, February 1996

Uwe lies dead in the pool. For six months, he has lived with an aging silent film star and enjoyed her luxury, while he was in love with a young colleague. Everyone thinks badly of him, and then he begins the story: "Come back with me to six months ago, and see what really happened!"

That is Uwe's dramatic first entrance in his new show, Sunset Boulevard, which premiered in Niedernhausen near Frankfurt in December. The successful Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, based on Billy Wilder's cult film, tells the story of the young, unsuccessful writer Joe Gillis (Uwe Kröger). Fleeing from his creditors, he enters the estate of the forgotten silent film diva Norma Desmond. She wants him to write a movie for her, to return her to her former success. Joe agrees....

"The great thing about this show is being the lead actor and narrator," Uwe says when we meet him in his dressing room shortly before the show begins. "I'm onstage during about 98% of the show, and I get to show my acting abilities." For the part of Joe Gillis, Uwe did quite a lot: after moving from Vienna to Stuttgart in 1994 for Miss Saigon, he had to move yet again, to Wiesbaden. "It is more like Vienna. The people are so friendly, and the surroundings are beautiful," describes Uwe nostalgically. "I would be the perfect advertisement for Vienna. Since I left, I've noticed how much I miss it! I brought all my furniture from Vienna, and I have hundreds of photos of my time with Pia. My favourite piece is an Elisabeth painting I received as a farewell gift!" He is also enthusiastic about his Austrian fans: "I've rarely seen an audience so interested in theatre. People show you whether or not they like the show, and they approach you. In Germany there is no such interactive relationship." And he admits, "Gaston in Beauty and the Beast would have interested me!"

Maybe some day he will return to Viennawith one of his favourite musicals: Joseph, Into the Woods, or Passion. Or in films? "I would love to do a movie like Abgeschminkt, Stadtgespräche, or Der bewegte Mann. We'll see!"

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