The Prinzregenten-Theater in Ludwigshafen am Rhein, in the Hemshof district, is a privately run theatre founded in the summer of 1977 by the actor and director Bernhard F. Dropmann with the aim of preserving the Palatinate dialect.
On 15 January 1978 the first premiere took place in the “Theater im Hemshof”, which was the name of the theatre at that time, with the production “Bunte Revue”.
Until 1990 Bernhard F. Dropmann staged 55 premieres with about 3250 performances in the “Theater im Hemshof”. The ever-increasing popularity of the small theatre in the Hemshof meant that an extension was unavoidable.
In June 1991 Dropmann celebrated the first premiere with the play “Hurra, die Pfalz ist da” in the newly opened and self-designed Prinzregenten Theater. Countless premieres and new productions have followed to date, and the curtain has risen more than 9,000 times in total, more than 1,000 times for the classic “Halt die Gosch, Bu! (by Fitzgerald Kusz), which was also recorded for television by Südwestfunk (today: SWR).
A large part of the staged and performed plays originate from the pen of the impresario Bernhard F. Dropmann.
The theatre now has several stages and plays almost daily throughout the year in weekly changing blocks. The children’s and youth theatre (JukiLU), which has been part of the house since 1991, plays children’s and youth plays several times a week.
In 1993, another stage was installed in the foyer of the theatre for the Mitternachtsspitzen, a Saturday midnight show with a changing programme. Since 1997, cabaret has also been performed directly in the “Prinzenrolle” located in the adjacent building.
In 2004, the Hortus Deorum (Garden of the Gods) was opened in the courtyard of the Prinzregenten Theatre. Open-air theatre is offered here during the summer months. The theatre receives an average of 70,000 visitors from all over Germany every year.
The “big house” has existed in its present form since 1991. The foyer and auditorium were decorated with fresco painting by artists and stage designers specially engaged for the purpose. In the theatre, which is modelled on the Rococo period, there are, among other things, six boxes, some of which commemorate princes and regents by name (e.g. Liselotte von der Pfalz, Elector Karl Theodor, Prince Regent Luitpold and King Ludwig II) in the days of the “old” Palatinate.
Prince scroll (small house)
The “Prinzenrolle” opened in 1997 with the premiere of “Halbschatten über Herrenstein”, by Bernhard F. Dropmann. So far, further premieres have followed, such as: Loriot’s dramatic works, Stardreck Duck Prize Parts I+II, the Camelia Lady, Gerti Weberlein or St. Joan of the Fitted Kitchen (a solo program), as well as the one-act plays The Bear and The Marriage Proposal by Anton Pavlovich Chekhov. On March 29, 2007, the Prinzenrolle celebrated its 10th birthday with the new production of the opening play “Halbschatten über Herrenstein”, directed by René Weintz.
The “Mitternachtsspitzen” are an umbrella term for the Saturday comedy and cabaret evenings in the foyer of the Prinzregenten Theater. Here plays are on the program such as: Fairy tale hour for sex adults, Spitzentitzenreiter or Schawüle nights. The performances, which are not always entirely youth-friendly, therefore only begin after 10:30 pm and continue until after midnight.
The “Garden of the Gods” (Hortus Deorum) is located in the inner courtyard, between the “large” (Prinzregenten-Theater) and “small” (Prinzenrolle) houses. In the summer months, classical and comedic open-air theatre can be seen in the ivy-covered garden.
The Ludwigshafen Youth and Children’s Theatre in the Prinzregenten-Theater first began performances in 1991. The performances usually take place on Wednesday and Sunday mornings on the stage of the big house. Here the “little” spectators get to see plays like: Huibert the little ghost, Schlumpi and Pumpi, Rumpelstilzchen, Frau Holle, Mixpickelmonsters etc.
- Michael Haensel
- Bernhard F. Dropmann
Famous actors of the ensemble
- Gunhild Branchart
- André Eisermann
- Bernhard F. Dropmann
- Jens Neuhaus
Known performances (selection)
- “Halt die Gosch Bu” Original: Schweig, Bub!, by Fitzgerald Kusz
- “Moin letschder Wille” Original: Letzter Wille, by Fitzgerald Kusz
- “Gossip in the Stairwell“ Original: Gossip in the Stairwell, by Jens Exner
- “From the Cärryworscht to the Millionaire.”
- “Än Käffisch voller Narre” Original title: La Cage aux Folles
- “Pension Schöller” by Wilhelm Jacoby and Carl Laufs
- “Des verkaafde Vadderle” Original: The Sold Grandfather, by Anton Hamik
- “De oigebilde Kranke” Original: The Imaginary Sick, by Jean-Baptiste Molière
- “Vedderleswertschaft” Original: The Revisor, by Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol
- “Alles uff Kronkeschoi” Original: And everything on a sick note, by Ray Cooney
- “No pennies on the dollar” Original: Funny Money, by Ray Cooney
- “Everything out of control” Original: Out of Control, Ray Cooney
- “Loriot’s dramatic works” by Vicco von Bülow
- “Loriot uff pälzisch” Original: by Vicco von Bülow
- “The Neurosis Cavalier”
- “Baby Baby – Balla Balla!” Original: Tom, Dick and Harry, by Ray and Michael Cooney
- “Uff noch Teneriffa” by Bernhard F. Dropmann
- “Our Dream Ship” by Bernhard F. Dropmann
– Collection of images, videos and audio files
- Prinzregenten-Theater (official homepage of the theatre)
- German Stage Association
- Theaterportal Rhein-Neckar(Memento of 23 April 2011 in the Internet Archive)
- palatinate dictionary