Anna German

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Anna German
Анна Евгеньевна Герман
Anna German-legitymacja studencka (cropped).jpg
Anna German in her student years, 1959
Anna Yevgenyevna German

(1936-02-14)14 February 1936
Died25 August 1982(1982-08-25) (aged 46)
Years active1960–1982
Awards POL Polonia Restituta Kawalerski BAR.svg POL Zloty Krzyz Zaslugi BAR.svg

Anna Wiktoria German-Tucholska [1] (14 February 1936 – 25 August 1982) was a Soviet-born Polish singer, immensely popular in Poland and in the Soviet Union in the 1960s–1970s. She released over a dozen music albums with songs in Polish, as well as several albums with Russian repertoire. Throughout her music career, she recorded songs in seven languages: Polish, Russian, German, Italian, Spanish, English and Latin.



Anna German was a Polish and Russian-language singer of a German family. She was born in Urgench, a city with a population of 22,000 in northwestern Uzbekistan in Central Asia, then Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union. Her mother, Irma Martens, was the descendant of Plautdietsch-speaking Mennonites invited to Russia by Catherine II. Her accountant father, Eugen (Eugeniusz) Hörmann (in Russian, Герман), was also of a Russian-German pastor family and born during travel in Łódź (Czarist Russian Empire) now Poland. Eugen Hörmann's father, Anna's grandfather, Friedrich Hörmann, who had studied theology at Lodz, was in 1929 incarcerated in Gulag Plesetsk by Communists for being a priest, where he died. In 1937, during the NKVD's anti-German operation, Eugen Hörmann was arrested in Urgench on false charges of spying, and executed (officially, sentenced to ten years in prison). Thereafter, Anna and her mother and grandmother survived in the Kemerovo Region of Siberia, as well as in Tashkent, and later in the Kyrgyz and Kazakh SSRs.

Anna German plaque in Wroclaw Anna German tablica pamiatkowa Wroclaw.JPG
Anna German plaque in Wrocław

In 1946, her mother (who had married Herman Gerner, a Ludowe Wojsko Polskie soldier) was able to take the family to Silesia, first Nowa Ruda and then Wrocław in 1949.

Anna quickly learned Polish and several other languages and grew up hiding her family heritage. She graduated from the Geological Institute of Wroclaw University. During her university years, she began her music career at the Kalambur theater. Anna finally became successful when she won the 1964 II Festival of Polish Songs in Opole with her song "Tańczące Eurydyki". One year later, she won first prize in the international song contest in Sopot.

Anna performed in the Marché international de l'édition musicale in Cannes, as well as on the stages of Belgium, Germany, United States, Canada and Australia.

She also sang in Russian, English, Italian, Spanish, Latin, German and Mongolian. [2] In 2001, six of her Polish albums were reissued on CDs. In recent years, many compilation albums of her songs have also been released in both Russia and Poland.

Career in Italy

In December 1966, German in Milan signed a contract with a small firm CDI to release the records, thus becoming the first performer from behind the "iron curtain", which was recorded in Italy. In Italy, Anna German has performed at the festival in San Remo, starred in a television show, a recorded programme with the singer Domenico Modugno, performed at the festival of Neapolitan songs in Sorrento and received the award "Oscar della simpatia".

Car accident and treatment

On 27 August 1967, while in Italy, on the road between Forlì and Milan, Anna German was involved in a severe car accident. At high speed, the car driven by the impresario of the singer crashed into a concrete fence. Anna was thrown from the car through the windshield. She suffered multiple fractures, internal injuries. The results of the investigation revealed that the driver of the car – her manager Renato Serio – fell asleep at the wheel. He escaped with a fracture of the hand and feet.

After the accident, German had not regained consciousness. After the plaster was taken off, the singer still lay in a hospital bed for half a year. Then it took her a few months to relearn to sit and walk.

Later in the 1960s, she released the autobiographical book "Come Back to Sorrento?"("Wróć do Sorrento?"), dedicated to the Italian period of her career. The book circulation – 30,000 copies.

Personal life

On 23 March 1972, she married Zbigniew Tucholski. Their son, Zbigniew, was born on 27 November 1975. In the last years of her life, she composed some church songs. She died of osteosarcoma in 1982, and was buried at Warsaw Evangelical cemetery.

Anna loved to cook Oriental dishes. Her favorite foods were boiled potatoes with herring, pickles, pies with cabbage, black tea with lemon, and oatmeal cookies. She did not consume alcohol.


Anna German's star on the Walk of Fame in Opole Opole-Aleja Gwiazd-German.JPG
Anna German's star on the Walk of Fame in Opole

Books about Anna German

Literary works



Anna German grave in Protestant Reformed Cemetery in Warsaw Anna German Grave.JPG
Anna German grave in Protestant Reformed Cemetery in Warsaw


Later reprints and compilation albums


See also

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Preceded by
title=Poland in the Eurovision Song Contest 
Poland in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
to the 1994 contest