- orig. Max Goldmannborn Sept. 9, 1873, Baden, near Vienna, Austriadied Oct. 31, 1943, New York, N.Y., U.S.German theatrical director.After studying drama in Vienna and acting in Salzburg, he joined Otto Brahm's company in Berlin in 1894. Reinhardt directed his first play in 1902 and managed a small theatre from 1903. He had directed more than 40 plays by 1905, when he became famous for his creative staging of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. He bought Berlin's Deutsches Theater and remodeled it with the latest innovations in scenic design and lighting. Known for the extravagant theatricality and stunning visual effects of his productions, he won much praise for his staging of the religious spectacle The Miracle (1911). In 1920 he cofounded the Salzburg Festival, where he staged Jedermann (an adaptation of Everyman) in the cathedral square. He left Germany in 1933 and eventually settled in the U.S. A major influence on 20th-century drama, he helped increase the creative authority of the director.
* * *▪ Austrian directorIntroductionoriginal name Max Goldmannborn September 9, 1873, Baden, near Vienna, Austriadied October 31, 1943, New York, NewYork, U.S.one of the first theatrical directors to achieve widespread recognition as a major creative artist, working in Berlin, Salzburg, New York City, and Hollywood. He helped found the annual Salzburg Festival.Discovery of the theatreReinhardt was the eldest of seven children born to Wilhelm and Rose Goldmann, an Orthodox Jewish couple. Though his parents were remote from theatrical life, they were sympathetic to his fascination with the actors of the Vienna Burgtheater, and, at the urging of one of these, they allowed their son to exchange his boredom as a bank clerk for the excitement of drama school. Although he proved to be an inhibited actor, needing a beard and heavy makeup to release his talents, Reinhardt won local fame and friends in Salzburg. In 1894 he succumbed to an invitation from Otto Brahm (Brahm, Otto), who had brought the drama of Henrik Ibsen (Ibsen, Henrik) to Germany, to join his Deutsches Theater in Berlin. He had assumed the stage name Reinhardt some time prior to moving to Berlin.Reinhardt learned much from Brahm but was never wholeheartedly committed to the naturalism of his productions. He tired of “sticking a beard…and eating noodles and sauerkraut on stage every night,” which latter activity was required by Brahm's notion of realism, in which nothing was to be simulated. This was not to be his direction in theatre. Quick to make friends despite his shyness, he met other young artists in cafés. From their gatherings there emerged a lighthearted revue, Schall und Rauch (Sound and Smoke), to which Reinhardt contributed sketches. Playing before invited audiences, it was so successful that it was transformed into a serious work and settled into the Kleines Theater in 1902. Reinhardt planned a full season and directed his first play, Oscar Wilde (Wilde, Oscar)'s Salomé.Career in full flowerReinhardt exhibited his ability to make the right contact at the right time when he produced 14,000 marks to placate Brahm, who was furious over his breach of contract. He took over the Neues Theater in 1903, and his career moved ahead rapidly. By the end of 1904, he had directed 42 plays. His early landmark of genius was the production in 1905 of William Shakespeare (Shakespeare, William)'s A Midsummer Night's Dream (Midsummer Night's Dream, A). Reinhardt's staging was swift, light, and joyous, capturing for audiences the theatrical brilliance that had been buried for so long beneath productions devoted to a ponderous, reverent delivery of Shakespeare's words.The young director became famous overnight. Offered the artistic directorship of the Deutsches Theater, he would settle for nothing less than ownership. He purchased it for 1,000,000 marks, and at age 32 he had reached the pinnacle of his profession. He completely rebuilt the theatre, introducing the latest technological innovations in scenic design, and started a school. Purchasing a tavern next door, Reinhardt remodeled it into a small theatre for plays that needed intimacy with the audience. He summarized his new concept in theatre with the word Kammerspiele, “chamber plays.”In his success, Reinhardt remained close to his family. He brought his brother Edmund, who suffered from depression, to Berlin and acted almost as his psychiatrist, setting him to work in the theatre to regain his confidence. Beginning in 1907, the Deutsches Theater toured throughout Europe and the United States. The production of The Miracle, which premiered in 1911 in London and played subsequently in New York City and European cities, was Reinhardt's most spectacular work and, at the same time, probably the most characteristic. Reinhardt was fascinated by the emotional richness of Roman Catholic rites and Gregorian chants. His production of The Miracle involved more than 2,000 actors, musicians, dancers, and other personnel. Performed without dramatic dialogue, it was a modern-day reunification of drama and ritual. It was pure theatre in the most archetypal sense.If in The Miracle he re-created an ancient unity, Reinhardt was equally important in giving new life to many of the great dramas from the theatre's past. His staging of Sophocles' Oedipus Rex in 1910 initiated the first large-scale revival of classical Greek drama in more than 2,000 years. During the 1913–14 season he mounted new productions of 10 of the 22 Shakespearean plays he had directed, using few or no settings and creating a major Shakespearean revival. In 1911 he brought a modern point of view to opera with his direction of the premiere of Richard Strauss (Strauss, Richard)'s Der Rosenkavalier, with a libretto by Hugo von Hofmannsthal (Hofmannsthal, Hugo von). After many years he succeeded in helping to establish the Salzburg Festival, staging Hofmannsthal's Jedermann (Everyman) in the city's cathedral square in 1920. With Reinhardt's support the Salzburg Festival became an annual event, bringing about a new interest in the dramas of the Middle Ages from which Jedermann was adapted.Return home and exileReinhardt had continued his work throughout World War I with no lessened sense of duty toward his art and his audience. In 1920, save for occasional engagements, he gave up direction of the Deutsches Theater. Retiring to a castle that he had purchased in Austria, he attempted to find in his native country the regard he had been accorded abroad. His home was a meeting place for international celebrities, but enemies prevented him from feeling at home in his hometown. He commuted in a circuit of Berlin, Vienna, and Salzburg. When the Nazis assumed power in Germany in 1933, Reinhardt was luckily abroad. In a letter to the Nazi government that was a typical blend of conceit, irony, rejection of politics, and prophetic perception, he left his theatrical empire to the German people. The era of private management of such institutions as the theatre had passed, he wrote, and he foresaw that in the future it would be impossible to manage any such cultural undertakings without state backing.After further work in Europe, Reinhardt moved to the United States in 1938. He opened a workshop in Hollywood, where he had made a film of A Midsummer Night's Dream in 1934–35. His staging of Everyman in modern dress was followed by an unrealized plan for an all-black production of it. The final years of his life were filled with lesser fortunes and poor health, and he died speechless.AssessmentA man of few words and little inclination or ability to develop or expound a dramatic theory, Reinhardt was a pragmatist whose instinctual feelings for the rightness of things transformed theatrical production in the 20th century. Before him, the idea of the director as a creative artist in his own right had been barely embryonic. With his work, the director emerged as the dynamic formative mind behind the production of a dramatic work.Like the plots of the tragedies he so loved, Reinhardt's life was a rise to the heights of success and a fall to a life of uprooted exile. With his first wife, Else Heims, a beautiful and sensual actress, he had two sons. His second wife, Helene Thimig, was also a beautiful actress but, like Reinhardt, a shy person moved by an immense inner force and alive with conflicting appearances. He was an introvert capable of extreme extroversion and Falstaffian laughter. He disliked sentimentality in others yet was himself filled with romantic sentiments, a combination of Viennese sensitivity and German discipline with cosmopolitanism. His work summed up all theatre before him and opened new vistas for the theatre that followed.Hovahnness Israel PilikianAdditional ReadingHuntly Carter, The Theatre of Max Reinhardt (1914, reissued 1964), attempts to define the nature of Reinhardt's work. Oliver M. Sayler (ed.), Max Reinhardt and His Theatre (1924, reprinted 1968), contains personal accounts, profusely illustrated, and a chronology of his productions. Gottfried Reinhardt, The Genius: A Memoir of Max Reinhardt (1979; originally published in German, 1973), by his son, offers both personal recollections and a look at the contemporary cultural milieu. J.L. Styan, Max Reinhardt (1982), surveys his work. Margaret Jacobs and John Warren (eds.), Max Reinhardt: The Oxford Symposium (1986), is a collection of essays.
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Reinhardt,Max — Reinhardt, Max. 1873 1943. Austrian theatrical director and manager whose experimental, large scale productions included Oedipus Rex and The Miracle. * * * … Universalium
Reinhardt, Max — (Max Goldmann, 1873 1943) Director, actor, manager. Reinhardt is among the most significant figures in the entire history of the German theater. He was both the herald of a new era and a fulfillment of nearly everything that had gone before it … Historical dictionary of German Theatre
Reinhardt, Max — born Max Goldmann (1873 1943) stage director; his revolutionary theatrical techniques made him Germany s premier director during 1905 1920. Born to a minor Jewish businessman in the village of Baden, near Vienna, he was raised in Vienna and… … Historical dictionary of Weimar Republik
Reinhardt, Max — (1873–1943) Born Max Goldmann in the Austrian resort town of Baden, just south of Vienna, Reinhardt was a true man of the theater. An actor, director, theater manager, and author, he was also the husband of Helene Thimig (1889–1974), a member… … Historical dictionary of Austria
Reinhardt, Max — (1873 1943) Born Max Goldmann in Baden, Austria Hungary, Max Reinhardt became one of the most admired and prolific directors and producers in Europe. His early work was seen in America in 1912 when Winthrop Ames brought Rein hardt s Asian… … The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater
Reinhardt, Max — orig. Max Goldmann (9 sep. 1873, Baden, cerca de Viena, Austria–31 oct. 1943, Nueva York, N.Y., EE.UU.). Director teatral austríaco. Después de estudiar teatro en Viena, interpretó pequeños roles en Salzburgo. En 1894 se unió a la compañía… … Enciclopedia Universal
Reinhardt, Max — • РЕ ЙНХАРДТ, Райнхардт (Reinhardt) Макс (наст. фам. Гольдман, Goldmann) (9.9.1873 30.10.1943) нем. и австр. режиссёр. В 1894 окончил театр, школу при Венской консерватории. Работал актёром в разл. т рах Австро Венгрии и Германии. В кон. 90 х… … Кино: Энциклопедический словарь
Reinhardt, Max — pseud. di Goldmann, Max … Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione
Reinhardt, Max — (1873 1943) German producer and director. Born in Baden, Austria, he was an actor and assistant director at the Salzburg State Theatre. In 1894 he went to Berlin to the Deutsches Theatre. In 1903 he began directing, and in 1905 he became… … Dictionary of Jewish Biography
Reinhardt, Max Goldmann, llamado Max — ► (1873 1943) Director teatral y cinematográfico austríaco. Autor de El sueño de una noche de verano … Enciclopedia Universal