The farewell song for Merkel caused controversy

Merkel asked soldiers to play “Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen” by Nina Hagen, who had called her a hypocrite on television.

Follow BBCOn the evening of December 2, the German military held a Grosser Zapfenstreich ceremony to bid farewell to the German chancellor in Berlin before she left her post after 16 years. Merkel was allowed to choose three pieces of music and asked the marching band to perform. She surprised many people when she wanted the soldiers to play the song Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen (He forgot the color film.)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel listens to “Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen” during the Grosser Zapfenstreich ceremony on the evening of December 2. Video: Ihr Programm

Many Germans commented that Merkel humorously chose the song at the farewell ceremony as Chancellor.

Sheet Tagesspiegel said Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen memorized by most East Germans. First recorded in 1974 by female singer Nina Hagen, the song became a hit in the country and some European countries. The content is about a trip between Hagen and her boyfriend named Michael. Before the beautiful natural scene, the singer is not afraid of hardships to pose in front of the camera, in the hope that her lover can take vivid pictures. However, Michael only brought a roll of black and white film, instead of the color film she wanted.

“My bare feet painfully tread on the sand.
I put his hands on my shoulders.
My guy Michael, everything is so painful!
If you do it again, I’ll leave.

I forgot the color film, my Michael.
No one will believe the beautiful scenery here.
You forgot the color film.
The sky is blue, white, and leaves, all will soon cease to be true.”

song "Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen" by Nina Hagen

Nina Hagen performing the song “Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen” in 1985. Video: Homhable Youtube

Nina Hagen performed the song in an exaggerated, humorous style to express the girl’s anger at her boyfriend’s mistake. She sings that it is unforgivable when all her efforts to pose have gone in vain.

“I’m at our house
and select photos for the album.
This is me in a bikini and me at the nude beach.
Here’s me in a sexy dress and a natural landscape.

But everything is disgusting, my tears are hot
Landscape or Nina – everything is black and white.
Oh my Michael, it’s all so painful!
If you do it again, I’ll leave.”

The song was once considered a mockery of East German society at that time too “gray, dull” – like a black and white film reel. At the same time, people rarely have access to color film reels – which are a luxury item. The song “No one will believe that this place used to be so beautiful” is loved by many East Germans.

Some commentators speculated that the outgoing Prime Minister implied a more modern message through the song. “It could have been her frustration with men neglecting her job or saying goodbye to her male colleagues,” Oltermann of the newspaper said. Guardian Write.

The German chancellor did not specifically explain the reason for choosing the song, saying Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen reminiscent of her youth: “The song comes from East Germany and it’s a coincidence that it’s still playing in what used to be my constituency.” In the past, Merkel’s predecessors often chose serious music like My Way (Frank Sinatra) or Ode to Joy (Ludwig van Beethoven) at the farewell ceremony.

Singer Nina Hagen said she was surprised to hear that Merkel chose her song. At first, she thought it was fake news because Kurt Demmler – the song’s author – was accused of child molestation and decided to hang himself in prison in 2009.

Hagen is a German punk singer known for his rebellious acts. In 1992, she and Merkel attended a TV show about women’s and children’s rights together. Here, the singer called the German Chancellor a liar, a hypocrite.

Dat Phan


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