THURSDAY, DECEMBER 15, 6-9PM.
Philosophical Research Society (PRS)
3910 Los Feliz Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 9002
KRAMPUS NIGHT AT PRS — An Evening of Folkloric Holiday Traditions with author Al Ridenour, featuring pre-show Cocktail Hour, live Germanic holiday songs, actual Krampuses and the campy kinder-horror film Der Struwwelpeter on screen
Author, podcaster, Al Ridenour is the author of THE KRAMPUS AND THE OLD, DARK CHRISTMAS (Feral House, 2016), the only in-depth English-language study of the German folk-demon, Krampus. Now in its second printing, it has been praised by critics including the LA Times’ Elizabeth Hand, who found the book “gleefully erudite,” remarking that it “deserves to become a classic.”
This illustrated presentation will reveal how the often-misunderstood figure of Krampus is connected to centuries-old witchcraft beliefs and an older, darker understanding of the Christmas season as a time offering access to the spirit world.
Ridenour’s talk will be followed by a screening of extended excerpts from the film, DER STRUWWELPETER by noted fairy-tale film director Fritz Genschow (Germany, 1955, 30 min. total). Evocative of the 19th-century “sugar-bread and whip” style of parenting favored in Germany. Screened only a handful of times in the US, the film (subtitled by Ridenour) brings to life the notorious collection of rhymed cautionary tales penned and illustrated in 1845 by asylum medic, Dr. Heinrich Hoffman. Staged in series of charming tableaux precisely mirroring Hoffman’s drawings, narrated in rhyme, and often incorporating ballet.
Providing a musical intermezzo will be renowned singer CHRISTINA LINHARDT performing Germanic songs of the season accompanied on the hammered dulcimer by JERRY WHEELER.
In addition to the auditorium presentation, attendees will enjoy a pre-show COCKTAIL HOUR complete with festive mulled wine and photos with COSTUMED BEASTIES from KRAMPUS LOS ANGELES who will sniff out exactly who has been naughty this year! KRAMPUSES will appear again for photos after the talk and lecture.