Jakob Streit

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Jakob Streit (23 September 1910 in Spiez, Switzerland – 15 May 2009 in Spiez) was a Swiss author, teacher and anthroposophist. Besides this he worked as musician and choirmaster as well as conductor and dramaturg

Spiez Place in Bern, Switzerland

Spiez is a town and municipality on the shore of Lake Thun in the Bernese Oberland region of the Swiss canton of Bern. It is part of the Frutigen-Niedersimmental administrative district. Besides the town of Spiez, the municipality also includes the settlements of Einigen, Hondrich, Faulensee, and Spiezwiler.



Jakob Streit was born in the Berner Oberland in Switzerland, the son of a watchmaker, and lived there for most of his life. He had four brothers and sisters and everyone helped to tend the family beehives, their cow and calf and their sheep. [1]

Watchmaker artisan who makes and repairs watches

A watchmaker is an artisan who makes and repairs watches. Since a majority of watches are now factory made, most modern watchmakers only repair watches. However, originally they were master craftsmen who built watches, including all their parts, by hand. Modern watchmakers, when required to repair older watches, for which replacement parts may not be available, must have fabrication skills, and can typically manufacture replacements for many of the parts found in a watch. The term clockmaker refers to an equivalent occupation specializing in clocks.

He studied Education at the teacher training college in Bern, where his skills in Music, Education and Literature were honed. His musical education he completed with Hans Klee, the father of artist Paul Klee, [2] then began on a career as teacher of different age groups, in the course of which the many stories he told to the children were published as children's stories in over forty books. Many of these are translated into English and other languages. His educational method, and particularly his music instruction drew heavily on the indications of Rudolf Steiner on Waldorf education.

Paul Klee German painter

Paul Klee was a Swiss-born artist. His highly individual style was influenced by movements in art that included Expressionism, Cubism, and Surrealism. Klee was a natural draftsman who experimented with and eventually deeply explored color theory, writing about it extensively; his lectures Writings on Form and Design Theory, published in English as the Paul Klee Notebooks, are held to be as important for modern art as Leonardo da Vinci's A Treatise on Painting for the Renaissance. He and his colleague, Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky, both taught at the Bauhaus school of art, design and architecture. His works reflect his dry humor and his sometimes childlike perspective, his personal moods and beliefs, and his musicality.

Rudolf Steiner Austrian esotericist

Rudolf Joseph Lorenz Steiner was an Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, and esotericist. Steiner gained initial recognition at the end of the nineteenth century as a literary critic and published philosophical works including The Philosophy of Freedom. At the beginning of the twentieth century he founded an esoteric spiritual movement, anthroposophy, with roots in German idealist philosophy and theosophy; other influences include Goethean science and Rosicrucianism.

Waldorf education

Waldorf education, also known as Steiner education, is based on the educational philosophy of Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Anthroposophy. Its pedagogy strives to develop pupils' intellectual, artistic, and practical skills in an integrated and holistic manner. The cultivation of pupils' imagination and creativity is a central focus.

“When one has told stories to different age groups of children for 45 years on a daily basis, one learns a great deal from them, one is carried on the wings of Poetry, of the imagination. In later years, this interest grows into everything that is truly human. For example, this is how I came to write my first book about gnomes: A girl in the third grade brought a beautiful Edelweiss to my desk one morning, saying: “My father gave it to me and told me that, if you can tell us how the Edelweiss came about, you can keep it.” Quickly the children all sat down at their desks, for in their eyes the teacher of the third grade is capable of anything at all. Forty pairs of eyes are looking expectantly at you. (…) I began thoughtfully; soon there were gnomes and elves in the picture, finding magic ways to transform the stars of the night into the Edelweiss. Carried by the astonished eyes of the children, my story must have gone on for about 20 minutes. When the Edelweiss had finally been created, a little boy stood up and proclaimed: “Tomorrow you must deal with the Gentian.” In this manner, from day to day, we found our way through the different flowers of the mountains. I was not able to prepare at all. I needed the children to be there. Afterwards I wrote down the stories that had come about. They have been published as “Bergblumen Märchen” today with the publisher Oratio Verlag in Schaffhausen.”

After producing plays with children, he broadened his interest to amateur theatre direction, in the course of which he inaugurated the William Tell festival plays in Interlaken and the Spiez Castle Plays. [3] Having studied Piano and Organ, his work as choir conductor led him to produce a succession of operas, amongst others The Magic Flute and Orpheus and Euridice. [4]

William Tell folk hero of Switzerland

William Tell is a folk hero of Switzerland. According to the legend, Tell was an expert marksman with the crossbow who assassinated Albrecht Gessler, a tyrannical reeve of the Austrian dukes of the House of Habsburg positioned in Altdorf, in the canton of Uri. Tell's defiance and tyrannicide encouraged the population to open rebellion and a pact against the foreign rulers with neighbouring Schwyz and Unterwalden, marking the foundation of the Swiss Confederacy.

Interlaken Place in Bern, Switzerland

Interlaken is a statistic town and municipality in the Interlaken-Oberhasli administrative district in the Swiss canton of Bern. It is an important and well-known tourist destination in the Bernese Highlands region of the Swiss Alps, and the main transport gateway to the mountains and lakes of that region.

<i>The Magic Flute</i> opera by Mozart

The Magic Flute, K. 620, is an opera in two acts by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to a German libretto by Emanuel Schikaneder. The work is in the form of a Singspiel, a popular form that included both singing and spoken dialogue. The work was premiered on 30 September 1791 at Schikaneder's theatre, the Freihaus-Theater auf der Wieden in Vienna, just two months before the composer's premature death.

Questions of Art, Art History and culture occupied him all his life and after his retirement he began to lecture in most of Europe besides increasing the scope of his literary work. For many years he was editor of the AVS-Mitteilungen, the newssheet of the Anthroposophische Vereinigung in der Schweiz, continuing with this until his death at 99 years of age.

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Literary work

Books for Children and Young People



Radio Plays and Broadcasts