Events | Hilde Waldo

Los Angeles | October 29, 2016 | 5:00 PM

Much More Than a Secretary

Hilde Waldo and the legacy of Lion Feuchtwanger

A talk (with photo and film documents) by Herbert Krill with additional research by Alexandra Tyrolf

October 22, 2016 is the 110th anniversary of Hilde Waldo’s birth in Berlin. We want to take this as an opportunity to remember Lion Feuchtwanger’s secretary of 17 years, and celebrate her achievements. And we want to talk about some important, but largely unknown aspects of her life: her friendship with members of the German resistance group "Uncle Emil"; her connection to her life-long friend, the diplomat Erich Kordt; his help in rescuing her from Nazi persecution; her testimony on his behalf in Washington in 1945; and their enduring friendship afterwards.

Not only was Hilde Waldo the perfect secretary for Lion Feuchtwanger, diligent, loyal, educated, and fluent in English. After Lion’s death in 1958 and Marta’s death in 1987 she was instrumental in putting Lion Feuchtwanger's literary papers in order, overseeing the transfer of his library and his house to the University of Southern California, keeping in touch with his publishers in the U.S. and abroad, and much more. When the Villa Aurora, where the Feuchtwangers had lived, was transformed into the artists residence it is today, Waldo, who had worked there for half a century, slowly faded from memory.

Waldo's fate was, as we will see, greatly intertwined with history's events; she coped with them creatively and bravely built a career for herself in Southern California. The time has come to tell the surprisingly complex and exciting story of her long life.

Herbert Krill is a documentary filmmaker and divides his time between California and Central Europe. In 2008, he produced the documentary Feuchtwanger Lives! for 3sat TV (German Public Television).

Alexandra Tyrolf is a scholar of American Studies based in Leipzig, Germany. She is currently writing her dissertation on Jewish-German women writers who emigrated to the U.S., Marta Feuchtwanger, Salka Viertel, and Victoria Wolff.

We would like to thank USC Feuchtwanger Memorial Library for their collaboration .

Admission is free.
RSVP mandatory via +1 310 454 4231 or

Location: Villa Aurora, 520 Paseo Miramar, Los Angeles, CA 90272

There is street parking on Los Liones Drive. Shuttle starts at 4 p.m. on the corner of Los Liones and Sunset. Please do not park in the Topanga State Park lot.

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