The Austrian actor and cabaret artist Ernst Stankovski is dead. According to “Kurier” (online edition), the Viennese died at the age of 93, as the actor Albert Fortell confirmed to the newspaper. Stankovski has hosted shows like “Do You Recognize the Tune?” or “Fun with Ernst”, but also celebrated successes on stage, as a cabaret artist and as an author.
Ernst Rudolf Stankovski (actually Stankovsky) was born on June 16, 1928 in Vienna. From 1946 to 1950 Stankovski had his first engagement at the Theater in der Josefstadt. Through well-known cabaret artists such as Helmut Qualtinger and Georg Kreisler, he found parallel cabaret and made his debut as a cabaret artist in Gerhard Bronner’s “Fledermaus-Bar”. From 1950 to 1970 Stankovski then played on stages in Zurich, Munich, Düsseldorf, Berlin and Frankfurt. After that he performed again mainly in Vienna until 1980, with cultural tankers such as the Theater in der Josefstadt, the Burgtheater, the Theater an der Wien or the Volkstheater being among the places where he worked. Stankovski was also a welcome guest at the Salzburg Festival.
In addition to his career as an actor, Stankovski worked as a director, designed incidental music and was also successful as a composer and lyricist – including a new version of “Carnival of the Animals” for the Brucknerhaus in Linz. His adaptation and setting of “The Great Testament of Francois Villon” was a great success from 1982, and he also made a name for himself with adaptations of Moliere’s “The School of Women” and “Tartuffe”.
Entertainment films also became aware of Stankovski’s talents early on. In 1951 he was in front of the camera for the first time in “Verklungenes Wien”. However, he only achieved great popularity with his versatile television work. Stankovski’s first TV appearance in Arthur Schnitzler’s Liebelei in 1959 was followed by a good 250 more. He took part in many television plays, show programs and operetta adaptations, designed his own shows (“Fun with Ernst”, “Tonight Ernst Stankovski”) and the quiz show “Do you recognize the melody?” as well as solo evenings with their own texts and compositions.
Stankovski kept returning to cabaret alongside his television career. In 1973 he presented his own solo program “How will you look when you are dead”. This was followed by programs such as “Go to the Gauklern” (I and II), “The Viennese Mixture”, “The Antiprophet” and “Apropos Actors…” and in 2006 “Keine Spur von Literatur”. Even at an age when others have long since retired, he has repeatedly appeared in guest roles in film and television productions.
Stankovski’s first marriage was to actress Ida Krottendorf. In 1961 he married the dancer and actress Anna Luise Schubert. Their son Alexander was born in 1968.