Torsten Föllinger

Torsten Föllinger silhuett of the author summer 2007

Legend (Skriven till Israel G. Young )

The teacher- who do not sell his only soul

Is -like the smallest child –

Upon other’s shoulders lifted high.

The teacher –

Who sells his only soul…

His chaotic breakdown – will be foretold.

Cause – what violence – may create –

Blows away – like dust in the wind-

by the break of day.


Torsten Föllinger- is by some known, as the star of the stars. Star in this case means ‘ Zarah Leander-Ernst Hugo Järegård, Erland Josephson, Liv Ullman, Birgit Nilsson’  etc.

He was himself a figure whom liked more to perform among common people, lowering his wing of humility, in a harsh geniality, which jumped forward, exclaiming truths of joy to laugh about. But not in any mean matter, like Ingmar Bergman, who, was his arch enemy, mostly because Bergman wanted his actors like Liv Ullman, Erland Josephsson and Torstens ‘best friend’ Allan Edwall, to act dirty things in front of the camera…”He liked such things…” as Torsten dryly exclaimed, and, put another piece of cake into his mouth. Zarah Leander loved orgies and, one amusing story is about how her husband Vidar one evening called Torsten and complained “ We have patriates here again”. Torsten promised to come, cause, as Vidar stated; he knew Torsten was the only one Zarah respected (or one of the few) and, if she knew he would come, she would turn the bunch of lovers out…

Torsten unhatched the connection to the telephone and next day travelled in his car with his bulldog ‘Smulan’ out to the mannor country house, where Zarah ‘was living’. It turned out that Zarahs dachshund happened to arrive from the neighbour at about the same moment and, she stood on the porch, with a broom in her hand, she complained that the dog had been chasing after the neighbour’s , ‘in this way, now, you have gotten yours’, and he has had his…’, it was during the time of mating dance.

As she lifted the broom to hit it. Torsten said

“ You aren´t going to hit the dog are you? Slap me instead… Surely it is really me you are mad at”.

“ Go away!”…

”Do you want me to leave? I have travelled far just to see you” There was a pause – of heartbeat – false and true.

“Come on, you devil…”. Zarah gestured towards the front door.

It is said Zarah Leander drank Hermann Göring under the table, if that was when, he lived in Liljeholmen, at Liljeholmsvägen 8A,  by the dock of Mälaren, or in Germany when she performed for the stab of the Nazis is unsure. (Torsten assistant retold the story to me: The nazi-party of Germany, during times of war on practically all fronts, wouldn’t let Zarah return to Sweden. A contest was announced that, if Zarah could drink Herman Göring under the table, she would be permitted to go home.

Before the contest, miss Leander drank olive oil, and so, the alcohol was not digested by the stomach immediately. This way, she probably saved her life, since Germany was defeated later).

“ This … old, old legend … this …”. Torsten was once introduced for the resignation class in the Dramatic Institute (DI). “ Yes, I am old as the grave, and Allan here is three years younger than me” in a gesture torwards Allan Edwall.

Torstens teaching had the following elements; ´if the performer feels pleasure the audience also will´. In this sense teaching the essence of intercourse.

“Success or fiasco, but not be a good boy”

This was the whole of his genial teaching in its’ essence.

He received all kinds of peoples, not only stars. One of them who came to Torsten, at an early age, was Ted Gärdestad. The days before his claimed suicide, he visited Torsten, asking for assistance. The still quite young star, had become part of the bagwa sect ( in Arabic – this would implement something like an illegal fighter; and in Pali a master of his own). All members of the sect were forced to carry the leaders picture around their necks. Ted had become a victim of his own success and through the intense pleasure of many girlfriends, meditative drugs and material richness, fallen into the trap of masochism. (That is, to cause himself harm, pain, and unreasonably strict hygiene to push his genius onwards into further creativity for which his audience craved).

Torsten – besides his masterwork, also extracted in the social field, as a personal guard of released criminals, where his role model was his mothers’.

When young, he experienced his mothers’ strength, in being fearless of bulls. The bull – backed of and snorted, but Ingeborg didn´t care but kept on walking through the fenced yard. The bull – backed of and snorted, but her psychic strength was such, the animal didn´t attack. In such a way, Torsten treated criminals, with lessons of singing. One of them used to escape from prison in the following way; he went on lease around the prison and further on. When out of sight he began to run. His guards chasing him. When he had tired them, he asked to be released (of his handcuffs?). They had to walk back alone.

One night Torsten went across Norra Bantorget in central Stockholm. As he was about to cross, he saw a heavy built character, approaching towards him, the opposite way “be prepared…”, Torsten murmured to himself ‘surely it is a stiletto’.

“I need money”. A voice from a dark shadow in the darkness of night. “Isn´t that your problem?…”. “Do you see what I have in my hand?..”. “Really! Look…! – Isn´t that a – such – a – st – sti – sti – sti – sti…letto!”. Torsten said in a very silly voice ‘senil – old – idiot – pantomime.

“Damn old bastard…”, the shadow exclaimed and went away.

“You see he couldn´t attack a defenseless…”

His mother when he still was a youth – sitting under a kitchen table, cutting cows and sheep from newspaper as silhuetts in his own design. There was announced; the most life dangerous intern in Östersund (Norrland/Jämtland) had escaped from the prison. He was a life danger! It was claimed.

His mother – sailed out in to the stair well and exclaimed in the darkness penetratingly “Is someone there?”. “Yes”, came an answer – it was – the life dangerous murderer,

“I do not permit you to be running like this out in the night. Harken! You enter, and we will have a cup of tea and a chat”

Soon – the life dangerous intern became, like a baby in the lap of his mother…”Shouldn´t we call the police, so they can shelter you, it´s a cold night”. ‘My mother was very firm you see; but, she never betrayed anyone.’

Torsten always practiced theatre in real life. As he was coming out of Dramaten in Stockholm –  whose artistic leader he were for several years, one autumn evening – he was attacked by criminals, wanting to enter the building –

“We hit you down, old bastard!”

But – Torsten – wouldn´t permit them to get inside. He – had practiced some falling situations – already in Calle Flygares Theaterschool. As they hit him – he fell without hurting himself, by this surprising the burglary – robbers – who, must have thought he had past out. Unluckely – this didn´t work with the “healthcare” – who gave him a shot – ‘swine – flou – vaccination’ – without his outright consent – and – he developed a weakness which made the skincancer spread more rapidly.

He should have become 88 in 11th  march 2010 – but – the 6th – he saw a very good friend –  and, read some poems. In the night – he past on – to heaven hopefully…

He spoke much about Ottar, his best friend in his youth – who – had died out of tuberculosis,

He often – felt his presence, and longed to die – so he could meet him again in person…

As young a gang of boys approached him violently

“To see a gay motherfucker like you!”.

“Think of me…I have to look myself in the mirror everyday…”.

The leader of the gang – said something so stupid – Torsten never remembered the thing. This made the whole gang laugh –

“Since that day he was one of my best friends…”

Torstens’ sadness about his leaning towards homofili, sometimes instilled in him such a depressed state –  he wanted to jump out of his own window. But – the thought of his pupils climbing the five flights – to his attic apartment with view over the woods of Nacka, on Ringvägen 163 – always cheered him up.

He spoke very pleasantly about so called idiots, whom lacked the refinery of expression.

He was a supporter of theirs’, almost everyone loved him, and he never preached homosexuality to anyone, as far as I know. But – always warned against perversion of intrinsic nature. He had tried it with woman – but he wanted a man – not only to have sex with, this he could do in two minutes in the toilet (en la toilette), but – to speak with – to enfold – to love…really love… may Allah grant him forgiveness of his sins, in this world – and grant him Paradise –


Torstens observation as Jussi Björling – was about to take a high tune, he snored (the opposite of hawking) Margaretha Krook personally one of the shyest persons – used to run around in the corridors of Dramaten, in a faint panic, hours before the show , but on stage she was perfectly calm…

The insight was, as she, hired Torsten to participate in one of her repetitions (Torsten received the price of one lesson), that others’ criticism, and interference, in the spontaneous flow, strains the voice.

’let Margaretha herself decide’

and the voice sprang free of bonds.

Tommy Körberg, squeezed the muscles of his buttocks in high notes, similar to holding a fart, this elevates your own mind, and the minds of beloved.

As you take the high tune, you look down, as shy in bas notes, you look up, as repenting, asking forgiveness of Allah in the sky…

each note word, is formulated by the stomach muscles — the more intense the piece, the harder the muscles, has to formulate… smiling in spontaneous pleasure, makes notes, and text, flow more easily.

Putting ones tongue, folded up, into ones tonsils, and humming, will spontaneously, activate vibration from stomach muscles, as a beautiful pillar of high clear air through the body (according to Negro met outside Folklore Center, Izzy Young)

movement with the arm, in forms of ’Sieg Heil’ will help the high tunes, as they flow away as an eagle, opening the mouth widely in a smile, rolling ones eye balls in ecstasy.

Lying on the floor imitating ducks squeaking not filling the chest with air, but the stomach, as critics come just stand listening as they extend their excessive talk, you might come to think of something amusing ’vendetta, turn this and you might find a friend…’

Torsten Föllinger is the only male friend I ever managed to aquire: the rest is accurately described in the words of Israel Goodman Young:

these fucking guys – they destroy everything.

Torsten Föllingers homofilia was probably fake – an intelligent way of saying: I don’t want to become a fucking guy!

The jealousy and pissing-contest these fucking guys become possessed by, only wanting in the end to gather to themselves as much wealth as possible in materia, so they can ‘get’ as many attractive women as their ‘slaves’ (called girl-friend), makes the right of women seem like something good suddenly.

The only problem is that these ‘fucking guys’ actually imitate women.

Torsten Föllinger didn’t do that.

Reginald Horace Blyth writes in Zen in English literature and oriental classics:

All my life I had searched a friend, finally I thought I’d found one, in a monastery situated in Korea.

Happy I went there to visit him, but he treated me coldly, just like anybody.

Hurt I turned my steps homewards again.

Next time I saw him, I told him how I’d felt and how disappointed I’d become because of the manner he met me with. He said:

that was because you wanted something from me.

Full quote from Zen in English literature and oriental classics page 301:

R.H. Blyth story ”all my life I wanted a friend”

All my life I wanted a friend, and I thought I had found one at last in a monk of the Myoshinji, Keijo, Korea. Overjoyed with this thought, I went one day to the temple, but he treated me quite coolly, just like anybody else, and I went home quite wretched, feeling I did not want a friend anyhow, (sour grapes). That evening he came to the house and I told him what had happened and how I had felt. With a malicious twinkle in his black eyes he said, “That’s because you wanted something from me!”

Some comments on some Torsten Föllinger stories:

Torsten Föllinger supposed himself already in high-school, to be ‘homofil’, so that ‘these fucking guys’ would not be able to boast with that they had ‘been a pain in the ass of the genius’. Think of him at 12 years already saying, when the bullies came and approached him for this genial lie of his: ‘to have to see a gay mother-fucker like you everyday!’

“But think of me!! I have to look myself in the mirror every day!”

In previous times in Sweden, as showed in the Lars Molin film about the perversities of Lundbergs Internat School, sexy women were group-raped, and gifted males with a leaning towards the good, were bullied as to try to make them break-down, and the hope of the bullies was of course to drive these insane, and later they would by some “psychiatrist” get lobotomized..

Sexy women, like Zarah Leander, solved this by being openly promiscuous; just like women in Iran are used to being raped every day by the command of their fathers, to feel the helplessness of capitalism, and at the same time their fathers are earning more money on it; and finally if the women in that pleasure without love, begins to lean especially towards one of the males, the father takes a big sum from that male to marry “his” daughter. The problem with this is, as we see in Zahra Leander’s case, that she could not stop; even when she was economically stable, she had orgies in her house with many men, in front of the eyes of her poor husband Vidar..

Maria Wine, another of Torsten’s good friends and maybe pupils (in what field of Torsten’s pedagogy?, singing, theatre?, music, painting?) is contrasted with this above; she was the daughter of a prostitute, and her father too high politician for recognizing her as his legal child; that bore a great sadness of enormous tears inside her heart, like a flood it came out in poetical lines; and Torsten, being compassionate, gave her maybe her best poem.. In translation:

“The poet felt anxiety and pain;

lowered her gaze towards the table

and grabbed the pencil in lento maestoso..

The poet wrote about anxiety and pain;

and then smiles”

(Svenska originalet: Poeten kände ångest och smärta / sänkte blicken, fann pennan, greppade arket / poeten skrev om ångest och smärta / poeten log.) (Finns med i Maria Wines Samlade dikter)

She had not yet been termed as ‘insane’ because of the poetry that her heart was singing, so she could still express anxiety and pain, and fleet on that fame above the abyss of the oppression..

The actress Ewa Fröling recently mentioned on radio (the 27th March 2022) that she is ‘looking good’; and that is what they are chosen for usually; the Royal Dramatical Theatre had under Ingmar Bergman’s lead, a sofa, which was ‘the introduction’ where the sexy girl was forced to lay her bosses to keep her assignment.

One could suggest the idea that Gösta Ekman’s Sufism, that he was taught by Torsten Föllinger, by time grew sophistic, and that the gateway treading upon such an evil leaning path was his dis-faithfulness against his wife with his women admirers.

Torsten’s comment when ‘small Gösta’ as he was called since his father also had been a famous actor, that by time got to be called ‘old Gösta’, started an jealousy fight since me greeted him from Torsten, as Torsten sometimes had expressed to me a wish ‘to see Gösta’. It had been a long time since he had called Torsten, and Torsten had been a main key to Gösta’s success, Torsten being the only teacher Gösta had ever had in theatre, coming to Torsten through his father ‘Old Gösta’ that Torsten of course knew.

Torsten had said, that Gösta’s wife did not let them have contact, since Gösta was also a little queer just like Torsten.

I had then said that I sometimes had seen Gösta Ekman on town, and did Torsten want me to greet him if I happened to run into him?

‘That you can do’ Torsten said, and sighed a little heavy.

As I one day was walking up towards Torsten after having helped him to buy the usual foodstuff he used to make food for us from, and we met several times a week when Torsten gave me free lessons of singing, as he had set out to do, since he regarded me as so gifted and important. Torsten used to call me ‘the little boy’ and regarded himself sort of as an extra parent of mine, I saw Gösta Ekman coming towards me the opposite way, swinging his beige trench-coat as he walked down the road. As he had passed me, I turned around and shouted: Gösta Ekman!

He did not react or turn around.

‘I have a greeting from Torsten Föllinger!’ – then Gösta turned around with a smile on his face and said: ‘how is it with him?’

‘You should call him..’ was all I said, and then I kept on walking on my way.

Some weeks later, Torsten was all upset as we as usual was working on our singing and theatre lessons, and said: ‘what have you done.. Gösta.. I was on a party at Monica Nielsen and Gösta did not even greet me during the whole party..’

Then I told Torsten about our ‘meeting’.

‘Well, well..’ Torsten then said, ‘it does not matter.. You are much more important..’

Remember Torsten Föllinger talking about when he had dinner with Montserrat.. he had a friend who told him as he was in Italy that he have to hear this something special! So as he sat expectantly in the opera hall waiting to see the big star, he became highly surprised to see a little fat lady come into the scene.. One in his company remarked: shall that thing sing!?, and Torsten said: wait until you hear it!.. And as she opened her mouth Torsten said, it was like the hall lifted! The Italians loved her! Afterwards or some time later Torsten became aquinted/introduced for Montserrat and invited home to eat dinner at her place.. And he described how the food dishes never ended; after the starter, there was a second starter, and then the main dish, and after that some oysters to melt the food in a splendid manner and then the dessert and after that cookies.. Torsten asked the humble question: do you eat like this every day?, Montserrat just nodded sedatively and like in absent answered: Si mio Signore!

En del av Birgit Nilssons tragiska historia berättade Torsten Föllinger för mig. Offentligt var hon en riktig dunderkärring som beskrev sig själv att hon sjöng med fittan. Ja!, för ini helvete anamma. Men, en djup sorg dolde sig där bakom över att hennes föräldrar aldrig riktigt accepterade hennes yrkesval. De ville hon skulle bete sig som vanligt folk och bli bonde precis som dem. Föra traditionen vidare. Inte nån smutsig artist, som ju vettigt folk förr i tiden kallade dem. Bland annat så var Torsten med till familjegården en gång, och mamman klagade att ’Birgit ju inte ens kan ta ett högt c’ varvid Torsten gjorde ögon och sa ’det kan hon visst, det har jag nämligen hört. Får jag vara så fräck och fråga ifall fru Nilsson själv kan det’ varefter kärringen, alltså Birgits mor, slängde ur sig ett helt klart och välklingande högt c. Birgit Nilsson tog slutligen livet av sig.

Torsten Föllinger when he was 87, the year before he passed away in summer at my childhood home in Skarpnäck Stockholm

Stort tack till skådespelerskan Eva Gröndahl, som bland annat spelar i mina föräldrars favoritfilm ’Potatishandlarn’ för att ha delat dessa bilder på Torsten med mig.

”Bara hur mycket som helst.. det är huvudsaken” – Mästaren Torsten Föllinger om ”den där”

”Åh! Jag minns en varm kille, litet som du, som man inte kunde annat än att tycka om.. – ja, jag hade ju honom redan innan han slog igenom.. Sen, en dag blev jag förvånad att få besök, det var Ted som kom.. Han såg alldeles förstörd ut, och hade en bild runt halsen som nåt tungt kors såg det ut som att han bar på.. Jag frågade vad som föranledde det förnäma besöket, och Ted berättade att han planerade ta livet av sig.. ’Torsten, kan du hjälpa mig?’ sa han.. Jag bad honom då ta av sig den där bilden runt halsen; ’då kommer du känna dig mycket bättre..’ – men, Ted förklarade att det var ledaren för sekten han tillhörde ’Baghwa’, och att han var beredd att gå i graven för saken han trodde på.. Jag sa då att jag tyvärr inte kan hjälpa honom.. det var en sån sorglig historia..” – sista knappt hörbart, då Torstens ögon börjat tåras.. – Mästaren Torsten Föllinger om sin elev Ted Gärdestads självmord.

”du ska skriva en bok” sa Astrid Lindgren till Torsten Föllinger, ”du har varit med om så mycket”

Samma detta sista citat av Astrid Lindgren sa Torsten Föllinger till mig.

Han sa: ”du skulle bli en bra psykiater sörru.. DU HAR VARIT MED OM SÅ MYCKET.. då har man mer att ge andra”.

Torsten Föllingers dödsdikt skriven av mig:

Mannen som dog – Elegi till Torsten Föllinger




Vad man inte kan beskriva i ord

Passar in på mannen som dog.

Så ljuv & förstående

Att tårarna rinner

Så saknad av mig:

Att kroppen försvinner!

Men minnet lever i mig kvar

Hans röst kommer för mig – leva ljuda –

igenom mina bestående dar?

I nätterna han far med mig –

till andra sidan Himlen

Där är allt ljuv musik

Ännu kan jag höra hans toner

Där är allt Ett

Bortom tusen miljoner

bara ömhet–

ljuvhet utan ord –

där är jag.

med mannen som dog

Detta kapitel handlar om när Nils Kovacs träffar Torsten Föllinger för första gången och lär känna honom

Torsten Föllinger was as young boy with his mother on a dinner, and on that dinner was also Aunt Agda. Torsten’s ears got speared as he overheard how she most of the time was speaking about how bad other people were. Finally he gathered courage to himself, and said, interrupting Aunt Agda:

Aunt Agda: There are two ways of trying to put light upon how good oneself is:

One was is to hold forth how good other people are, so that one appears as a good person oneself; the other way, is to speak about how bad other people are, so that one in comparision appears so much better oneself!

In his twenties Torsten Föllinger moved from Östersund in Jämtland to Stockholm. He told me sometimes when I felt wretched over the persecution from the Swedish authorities: when I was young I was also under persecution, yhea, I was beautiful and homophil, could you imagine how they ran after me, for both purposes so to speak, and with this last sentence he used to lay in a hearty laughter, but by time they got used to me, and now it seems like they have finally accepted me!

Can you think when I was invited to a very fancy Noble lady living right by the castle in The House of Nobels, opposite the Nobel-library when I had recently arrived in Stockholm and did not have much cash. She asked me: Torsten! You who already know so many people, can’t you find someone whom can clean the flat before the party?

Of course missis!, I answered and smiled heartily.

So right on time I come dressed up in cleaner clothes with utilities and ring her door, you should have seen how her face changed when she saw me in those clothes.

“But Torsten! Why have you dressed up like this?”

“Your Nobleness needed a cleaner! I can do the work!” I said.

Yhea, she had no other alternative than to let me do it then.. I was though never invited to dinner to her house again.

Torsten talade med ogillande om Bertold Brechts karaktär tagande han promiskuitet som exempel – detta trots att Torsten sjungit in Brechts visor, och själv, åtminstone officiellt sett – var homofil. ’Du vet när Bertold Brecht kom till Stockholm så hyrde han en villa på Lidingö: Där satte han upp ett tält på gräsmattan, så att han inte skulle störa sin fru – ty – i det där tältet förstår du, hade han orgier med beundrarinnor. Kan du tänka dig det?!’