Saturday, February 5, 2011

Henriette: The Blonde One from Holland

This post is dedicated to MetFanMatt, because I've inadvertantly been torturing him for the past several days. Sorry!


Henriette: The Blonde One From Holland.

I dare not say it; because many trained singers will point the fingers at me. But it is true: my singing career began with Dschinghis Khan. I have not had gigs before (except in school), I have not sung in a band, and at eight years old learned piano only for a short time. That I am nonetheless in Dschinghis Khan, I have to thank my husband Wolfgang, the boss of the group. But more on that later...

I was born November 13, 1953 in Amsterdam. My father was a dentist, and for me it was clear that I would be a dental assistant for him. Then at five years old I was given my first pair of figure skates, and I was so thrilled with this sport-art that I was daily out on the ice for hours. At nine, I received my first training-hours (lessons?) and all had the opinion that I had talent to be a big ice princess. My role model was the American Peggy Fleming, World Champion and Olympian.

I must honestly admit, I had talent. As a nearly-13 year old, I was sent from Amsterdam to Oberstdorf to have training. I went to a private school, because every day figure-skating students must train for five hours. Morning three hours compulsory excercises, afternoon two hours free skating. My trainer was the father of the mutiple German champion Sepp Schoenmetzier.

In Oberstdorf I lived with my Grandma, who accompanied me. My parents wouldn't allow a young girl to live on her own.

I took part in small competitions and I could always win first place. Until I one day suffered a bad fall, that stopped my career. It was really, please excuse this expression, saubloeder [ed: could not find a translation for this, possibly a rude word for stupid?] accident. It happened during training. I ran to the boards to take off my sweater, and I stumbled and crashed with my right leg so badly into the hard boards that I had a double fracture of the leg and ankle. I spent six months in a cast.

When I was able to walk again, I tried again on the ice. But I continued to move my injury. I decided to quit the sport. The dream of the Ice Princess was blown.

I finished secondary school (I had to repeat one year because of my move to Germany) and began then to work for my father. We lived in the meantime in Klosters in Switzerland.

But I did not want to do dental health alone my whole life. Incidentally, I began to train as a beautician in Zurich. In this branch I met one person in modelling, and was hired as a model. For two years I had shown it all in a bikini and a fur mantel.

In this time came also the meeting with Wolfgang. Incidentally, it was a very comical thing. Wolfgang played with his band in a discothek, and I was a guest. Wolfgang played so wild a show, that he knocked out his tooth with a microphone. The owner knew I was a dental-asisstant and sent Wolfgang to me. I made an appointment for him with my father. So began our friendship, and then it was soon love.

A half year later we were married. For us it was clear, that we wanted always to stay with each other. My father was very content with my choice, then besides music, Wolfgang was studying dentistry.

Two years ago we moved to Munich because of Wolfgang's studies. To me it was at the start quite boring. Wolfgang studied and earned money on the side as a studio musician. I sat at home and was glad when I received a few modelling jobs.

One day Wolfgang explained to me that he was very proud, that Ralph Siegel had hired him for a new group. Wolfgang was very mysterious, then said that I should sing it with him. I got a red face and said at first no. I had only sometimes at home sung, and Wolfgang always said that I had a good voice.

Well, Wolfgang finally managed it, and dragged me to Ralph Siegel. There I was, and should sing. I thought: I cannot be shamed anymore, and sang straight on. To my great surprise, Ralph Siegel was thrilled and gave me a contract.

Today I am very happy. Mainly because now Wolfgang and I are standing together. And let's face it – I don't have such a bad voice. Or?


  1. AWWWW!! You're the BEST, Jenn!! THANK YOU!!!

    All right. Alert blogspot, and tell them to clear server space. MetfanMatt is about to start gushing.......... XD

    - My beloved is SO modest, isn't she?? "I don't have such a bad voice." You have the voice of an ANGEL!!

    - There are TWO YEARS worth of bikini pictures floating around somewhere? To German eBay NOW, MetfanMatt!!

    - I didn't know she played piano too!! Brains, incomparable beauty, AND multi-talented. Talk about having it all. *sigh*

    - So she moved to Germany to train for figure skating! At 13?? How scary that must have been for her........

    - My heart aches for her, though- It sounds like a) she had real talent for skating, and b) that her accident wasn't even in competition. Plus, she obviously was upset that it ended, and perhaps is still so today. And here I am, selfishly being happy that her career ended so I can enjoy her in Dschinghis Khan. Henriette, my beloved, wherever you are- if you're reading this..........I am truly sorry for having felt that way. For what little it's worth, you'll ALWAYS be an Ice Princess to me!!

    - Ralph Siegel was more than glad- I have to find on Steppenwind where he says she walked in to meet him, and he "looked at the face of an angel" <-- or something like that. HELL YEAH, Ralph!! The man has taste, that's for DANG sure..........

    - I knew that story about how they met- isn't it COOL?? Maybe I'll fly to Mallorca and knock out one of my teeth. Hehehehehe........... XD

    I don't think I'm done commenting- but that's enough for now. What a treat this morning!!

    Jenn, you're AWESOME! Really- THANK YOU!! *hug*


  2. I'm BACK!! I SO love this article........

    - So she has lived in Holland, Germany, Switzerland, and now Mallorca. She travels to Russia all the time, and lived 4.5 years on a ship. THEN WHY CAN'T YOU COME TO NEW YORK????? You don't even have to perform- just come to sightsee if you want!! We can take in a Broadway show, go to La Bernardin on W 51st for a lovely seafood dinner (your favorite!!!), maybe dancing afterwards- sounds like a GREAT time, doesn't it, Henriette?? *sigh*

    - FIVE HOURS of skating? A DAY?? Yow......

    - I wonder how her father felt about her joining Dschinghis Khan. He sure seemed hell-bent on her being a dental assistant, for whatever reason, and even OK'ed Wolfgang BECAUSE he was into dentistry- I hope he got the message that she didn't want to do that when she started training for, like, every career under the sun BUT dentistry.........

    - Does her leg STILL cause her trouble, I wonder? They don't do the whole Moskau routine anymore, I've noticed- I always thought it was simply because they changed the routine, but maybe she can't do it anymore.........

    - Why doesn't she model NOW? Yeesh, she's thousands of times more beautiful than anyone out there today. She can pass for 40 or younger with ease- can't you see her doing some sort of hair/makeup/skin cream something-or-other? I'm not a woman, but I think women would pay good money to use whatever Henriette Strobel is using to look as fantastically gorgeous as she does. And if they wouldn't, they SHOULD, because my beloved is certainly doing SOMETHING right. Some cosmetics company should get going on that NOW..........

    I would ask if you had any more Henriette articles, Jenn, but my guess would be that if you did, you wouldn't post them so you won't have to deal with the gushing.......... XD


  3. Thank you for your great work on this blog. It's interesting to read. And of course nice to read about Henriette who had such a great smile and just seemed to enjoy it all on stage.