How beautiful is the language which in your heart you hear¶
It sang for you already when on your mother’s lap¶
It’s in the mountain wind that plays for you so near¶
Its whispers you can hear right in the river’s lap …¶
(Evelyne Troxler – Emmanuelle Fleury)
Born in Riespach (Sundgau) with Alsatian (a German dialect) as his mother tongue, he attends a school in Belgium in 1930 where he learns Latin, poetry, French literature and theater. An 18 year old bank-clerk in Mulhouse, he has to leave for military service and war in the French army. Refusing to join Hitler’s army, he flees to Switzerland. As a member of the Resistance movement, he comes back to Mulhouse and becomes an officer of the Intelligence Service ; later on he’ll be the head of the hotel and catering union in Alsace .
Having joined the Alsatian Theater of Mulhouse (TAM) in 1935, he learns his job as a comedian, singer and cabaret artist during his stay in Switzerland with Parisian professional artists having also fled there: “Toni“ from Sundgau becomes Tony Troxler, who plays after the war on all stages in Alsace, speaking proudly Alsatian and French! His whole life will be devoted to the Alsatian language and his theater: TAM. Excellent actor and director, he bravely brings on stage almost unknown writers at that time like Nathan Katz (as soon as 1958), Lina Ritter, Claus Reinbold, Emile Storck, Jean-Paul Gunsett. He writes and plays 22 “Herra n’Owa“ (satiric plays with only men on stage), produces about 150 radio and TV programs and creates the “Kìndertheàter“ – theatre for children to learn Alsatian – in 1981.
The man died in 1998, just before his 80th birthday and the performance of “Toni“ as a first play in Alsatian at “Filature“ , the most famous cultural scene in Mulhouse.
The artist will never die …
Evething about Tony Troxler’s life and work is available at Bibliothèque de Mulhouse (Fonds Tony Troxler)
S’ Elsàss ìsch a Ragaboga – 300 mots en alsacien, 1981, réédité en 1995 chez Brinkmann
Mord àm Deckt Kànal, pièce policière, TAM, 1990
Mémoires d’un Saltimbanque, Editions de la Nuée bleue, Strasbourg, tome 1 1992 tome 1, tome 2 1994.
Tony Troxler – Hìnter’m Spiegel posthume, œuvre poétique traduite en français, Editions Hirlé, Strasbourg, 2002.
His poems are in a good number of books like Poètes et prosateurs d’Alsace, Georges Holderith, 1978 p. 408 etc …
Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur
Officier dans l’Ordre National du Mérite
Officier des Arts et des Lettres
created “Institut de Arts et Traditions Populaires d’Alsace“ and the “Bretzels d’Or“ with Germain Muller and refused all decoration in this frame.