Drs. P’s library is moving to campus! 6 things you need to know about him

Drs. Who? We can’t blame you if this is the first – and only - thought that pops up in your head after reading this. But if this indeed is your only thought, it’s about time to change that! Drs. P was a true Dutch ánd Rotterdam icon. Here are 6 things you really need to know about him.

  1. Drs. P was actually called Heinz Polzer. He was born in 1919 in Switzerland and died in 2015 in Amsterdam. Polzer had the Swiss nationality, but spent most of his life in the Netherlands and wrote in Dutch.
  2. He was a poet, writer, comedian, composer, pianist and singer, very well known for his humoristic and linguistically savvy songs. From the 1950’s until the 90’s, he performed in theatres, cafes, at student unions and events in Holland and Belgium.
  3. Polzer studied  economy at Erasmus University (then called Nederlandse Economische Hogeschool). His stage name actually refers to that: ‘drs.’ is short for the academic degree of ‘doctorandus’, which we now call ‘master’.
  4. He was a member of the student union Rotterdamsch Studenten Corps
  5. Drs. P was known for his poetic, well thought out lyrics, often laced with (dry) humour. His texts may be difficult to grasp if your knowledge of Dutch doesn’t exceed the basics. Fortunately, because he wrote a verse in English, we can give you a small taste of what Drs. P was all about.

A Christmas dinner, as you may have heard

Is likely to resolve around a bird

Now the species may vary

But it's never a canary

And a parrot would be equally absurd

6. Polzers private collection of books, containing his own work and publications on humour and language, will be given to the Rotterdamsch Leeskabinet at the University Library on Wednesday November 22. Why? To transfer the enjoyment of Drs. P to the next generation! And you can start enjoying by visiting the Drs. P exhibition that will open at the library on November 23.  

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