Tilla Durieux; born Ottilie Godeffroy August 18, 1880, in Vienna; died February 21, 1971, in Berlin. Tilla Durieux attended the acting school in Vienna and debuted in Olmütz Mähren in 1902. Engagements in Stuttgart and Breslau followed, as well as in Berlin as of 1903.
Until the National Socialist takeover in 1933, she acted on many German stages under the direction of Max Reinhard and Erwin Piscator, among others. At this time she left Germany with her third husband, Ludwig Katzenellenbogen, a Jewish industrialist, and settled next in Switzerland, then in Jugoslavia in 1937.
Aside from guest roles on various European stages, Tilla Durieux began writing her memoirs during her Jugoslavian exile. After her return to Germany, these were published under the title "Eine Tür steht offen" ("A Door is Open") in 1952.
After World War II in the western Federal Republic of Germany, she played in numerous theater and film roles as well as on television and radio shows until shortly before her death in 1971. For these roles she received many awards, including the Federal Cross of Merit first class in 1960, the Filmband in Gold for "Service in and around German Film" in 1961, and the Federal Film Prize in 1965.
In addition, she was inducted into the German Academy of Performing Arts as an honorary member in 1959 and was named State Actress in 1963. Beside her work as an actress, Tilla Durieux composed a number of literary works, including the novel "Eine Tür fällt ins Schloss" and the drama "Zagreb 1945," which premiered in Luzern in 1946.