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uni'alumni 2015_ENG

The University of Freiburg offers its students a creative environment that encourages them to get involved in their free time – whether in student government, theater, or sporting activities. Many students take advantage of this opportunity. What did Freiburg alumni get involved in during their years as students? Stefan Müller and Andreas Weckler asked around. Günther Diefenbacher Rubble Work during Semester Break “When I began my studies in Freiburg in 1946, I was engaged to help rebuild the top floor of Collegiate Building I, which had been completely destroyed in the war. I spent every Saturday and two to three weeks during semester break on the construction site. The work was hard, but I didn’t know things any other way. My room at the time, located near what is now Collegiate Building IV on the canal, had neither running water nor a toilet, and the food was rationed. But these circumstances strengthened my bond with my alma mater even more. The ‘rubble work’ progressed so slowly and imperceptibly throughout the course of my studies that I can’t even remember when it ended anymore. For me, it was a wonderful and eventful time I look back on fondly.” Prof. Dr. Ursula Schäfer Cassandra on the Studio Stage “People always suspected Paolo of staging things, and they were afraid of his criticism – because it was merciless and spot-on. These were both good qualities for a director. In winter semester 1972/73 he reac- tivated the Studio Stage at the Department of English, selecting Shakespeare’s difficult drama Troilus and Cressida. I played the minor role of Cassandra. The students – not just students of English – learned dis- cipline, how to deal with criticism, and stage presence, virtues that are not just useful in theater: Six members of that cast went on to become professors! And 20 years later, the director with the ‘stage name’ Paolo played a minor role in the screen adaptation of the bestseller The Campus. He had written the book himself: the writer Prof. Dr. Dietrich Schwanitz.” Photo: Margret Meyer-Schwickerath 197 tiva St De En S d Tr C I m C T students of English – Gabi Steinhart A Way of Life and a Retreat “I joined the university’s Russian Choir right at the start of my studies, in 1968. To my surprise hardly any of the mem- bers spoke Russian – and neither did I. But that didn’t stop me from being moved deeply by the music. The founder Alexander Kressling attached great importance to conveying the spirit of his childhood and his homeland Russia in the songs. That made practices un- believably authentic and full of life. I have only the very best memories of this time: In the Ganter Bar we often sang to the patrons all night and always received ‘boots’ – beer in enormous mugs – as thanks, which we acknowledged by singing again. The choir was always more than just a club: It was at the same time a way of life and a retreat. I’m a member to this day – and have never missed practice since my first semester.” art Studies Plus Photo:MargretMeyer-Schwickerath Photos: private, University of Freiburg Archive; Montage: Andreas Wekler Photo:private ALUMNI ANSWER 18