Dutch Language Blog

Annie M.G. Schmidt and the Adults Posted by on Mar 26, 2010 in Dutch Language

We covered Annie M.G. Schmidt’s work for kids and teenagers, which leaves one group missing: what did Annie M.G. Schmidt write for adults? Although I kept this topic until last, Schmidt actually started out with writing for the adults.

In 1938 she got herself out there by writing two poems that were both published in the magazine Opwaartsche Wegen. But like I said before, it wasn’t until after the war that she gained some fame. In the period of 1952 until 1958 she wrote 91 episodes of the radio play “In Holland staat een huis” (In Holland there is a house) about family Doorsnee (family Average). Schmidt was not afraid to be different, and that wasn’t always appreciated by the Dutch people. For example: in one of her plays she let someone say that he would kick the other persons butt. People were shocked and called the VARA, the network that aired the radio play, to complain or to end their membership. Despite this, Schmidt stayed a favorite among the audience .

In 1950 three bundles appeared:  “En wat dan nog?”, “Het fluitketeltje” and “Brood en Mangelpers”, with “Het Fluitketeltje” as a childrens book.  In 1965 she wrote her first musical called “Heerlijk duurt het langst.”  This play with the music of Harry Bannink had 534 showings.  A lot of musicals followed over the years. To name a few: “En nu naar bed” (1971), “Foxtrot” (1977) and “Madam” (1981).

Schmidt also created TV shows, with “Ja zuster, nee zuster” (1968) as one of the most famous ones, again with  Bannink as her closest co-worker responsible for the music. The show “Pleisterkade 17” was aired in twelve episodes between 1975 and 1977 and was a great success as well.

In 1991 Schmidt stopped with writing. She was almost completely blind and after a hip surgery after a fall in 1994, she decided it was enough. Schmidt discussed euthanasia with her doctor and asked Bannink to write the music for her funeral. She explained to him what she wanted and said: “I think it is time I deserve a party in which I am actually present.” On the early morning of her 84th birthday she ended her life. She is buried on cemetery Zorgvliet in Amsterdam.

What’s your favorite song from Annie M.G. Schmidt?  Tell us all about it in the comments section below!

Tags: , , ,
Keep learning Dutch with us!

Build vocabulary, practice pronunciation, and more with Transparent Language Online. Available anytime, anywhere, on any device.

Try it Free Find it at your Library
Share this:
Pin it