Biography

In 1999 CHRIS Kolonko first learned of the part of Marlene Dietrich. He was discovered by Matthias Kosel, a director who had written the musical “Ich, Marlene”.

Kosel gave CHRIS Kolonko the chance to play Marlene Dietrich and for the first time ever, a male actor interpreted her in all phases of life, from a yet undiscovered UFA star to an ageing diva.

The success of the musical led to attention from the media, several producers and various directors. He was featured on TV, had an appearance at an event called “Zukunftsforum” with Bill Clinton and was booked to entertain the Health Ministers during a G7 summit. He was appointed by the German Government to represent German culture and became a cultural ambassador by singing Marlene Dietrich songs to German holocaust survivors in Israel.

In 2004, Roncalli’s Apollo Variety produced a show specifically for him in which, together with artists and acrobats from all over the world, the story of Marlene Dietrich was revived. The same year, he performed at Roncalli’s dinner show “Panem et Circenses”.

This got the ball rolling and several versions of Marlene shows were created. Not only in Vienna, but also in Munich and Stuttgart. Chris Kolonko’s portrait as Marlene Dietrich decorated the city for months. Chris’s face was all over town and made him a big draw at PALAZZO dinner shows. Especially in Austria, where he received much attention from the press.
For the cruise ship MS Europa, a one hour concert was developed which is still being performed on numerous cruise ships and for several ship owning companies today (e.g. Hapag Lloyd, Phoenix Seereisen, Delphin Seereisen, Neckermann and TUI Cruises).

For smaller theaters, CHRIS Kolonko staged a two hour show which could be performed with various musical line-ups and met the requirements of small stages and festivals. Moreover, he started to change all costumes and wigs in front of the audience without leaving the stage. This made the impression of him slipping from one phase of her life into the other, even stronger.

When his stage anniversary of 20 years came up, CHRIS Kolonko thought of a new dimension of the Marlene Dietrich show. He added multimedia-based and audiovisual effects by using original pictures and movie clips in the background. With these features, he reached out to the audience in a unique way and managed to express her life, her ups and downs, her discipline and her inner conflicts during the war in an even more profound and emotional way.

In 2014, he and his musical director decided to take 10 musicians to the sound studio and record all the songs of the show. The quality of the new arrangements and the first-class line-up of musicians finally led to the idea to also record his voice and to produce a CD with his very own interpretation of the most beautiful and best-known songs.

Along with the CD release in April 2015, CHRIS Kolonko decided to rearrange the songs with a big band arrangement and got the renowned “Fink & Steinbach Orchester” to accompany him. This presented the CD in a stunning and spectacular way. The result was spectacular, a concert, a play and a multi-media based show which provided a perfect basis for some proper demo-material. This material is supposed to convince producers and directors from all over the world of the quality and uniqueness of the show and his main character.

“Marlene – The Concert of her Life“emphasizes CHRIS Kolonko’s success in interpreting Marlene Dietrich. He has created such a unique show about her life that one can easily claim is unlike any other prior show about the star.