Germany’s farewell parade for Merkel involved the military band playing punk music at her request

German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a ceremony in Berlin.


  • Germany held a farewell parade for outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday.
  • Merkel requested a punk-rock song from 1974 for the federal military band to cover.
  • Merkel has been chancellor since 2005. Her successor is her finance minister, Olaf Scholz.
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Germany held a parade for the departure of Chancellor Angela Merkel, and she chose a punk-rock song to be covered by the military band.

Merkel announced in 2018 that she would not run again this year, announcing the end of her 16-year term. His finance minister, Olaf Scholz, should take his place next Wednesday in the German parliament. said Thursday.

A farewell ceremony known as Großer Zapfenstreich, the country’s highest military ceremony, was held in his honor in Berlin on Thursday.

As is customary for parades of honors, Merkel chose three songs for the Bundeswehr band, the German Armed Forces, to cover, Deutsche Welle reported.

One, which clashed with the grand setting and stoic nature of the ceremony, was “Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen” (“You forgot the color film”), a 1974 punk-rock anthem by the German artist Nina Hagen.

Watch the performance here:

Merkel grew up in East Germany. She became Germany’s first chancellor of East German descent when she was elected in 2005.

“The song was a highlight of my youth, which, as everyone knows, took place in the GDR,” Merkel said. said at a press conference on Thursdayreferring to the official acronym for socialist East Germany after the end of World War II.

“The song comes from the GDR and it also happens to be set in an area that was in my former constituency. And so everything fits together.”

The other two songs chosen by Merkel were a melancholic pop song titled “Für mich, soll’s rote Rosen regnen” (“It should rain red roses for me”), by German singer Hildegard Knef, and the 18th century anthem ” Großer Gott, wir loben dich” (“Holy God, we praise your name”).

Merkel’s successor, Scholz, was also present at the ceremony.

“It is now up to the next government to find answers to the challenges ahead and shape our future,” Merkel said during her speech.

“For this, I wish you, dear Olaf Scholz and the government you will lead, good luck and much success.”

Scholz’s party, the Social Democrats, won the most votes in the September general election.

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Diana J. Carleton