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25 February 2020

Red Noses Clowndoctors 25th Anniversary

Austria: Red Noses Clowndoctors, 25 February 2020. Image from Colnect.


According to Wikipedia,

Rote Nasen Clowndoctors is an Austrian association that has set itself the task of giving sick people hope and courage in life in hospitals and nursing homes by means of specially trained clowns.

The association was founded on November 10, 1994 by Max Friedrich , Monica Culen and Giora Seeliger . The first visits took place with the Mautner Markhof’schen Children’s Hospital and the SMZ Ost in Vienna in the same year. Originally, the work of the association focused exclusively on the care of sick children. However, in 1999 this was extended to geriatric patients, in 2003 to rehabilitation patients and in 2012 to visits by mentally and multiple handicapped children and adolescents.

The clown is particularly capable of weakening and relieving depression, surgical shocks or desperate resistance to painful therapies. It breaks through the closedness of the patients to the environment and awakens the will to live where its absence can become an immediate danger. ” – Website of the Red Nose Clowndoctors

Rote Nasen Clowndoctors are recruited from artists from various areas of the performing arts , e.g. B. Acting, magic, pantomime , acrobatics, etc. These are only accepted into the clowndoctors team after an audition and subsequent trial period with extensive training, including in clown techniques , magic, music, basic medical and psychological knowledge and awareness training.

Visits to hospitals are usually carried out in teams of two, which always work in close cooperation with the nursing staff, and try to bring the patient some joy into the dreary everyday life of the hospital.

Since March 13, 2006, the association has been authorized to use the Austrian donation seal of approval.


The Red Nose Organization Piros Orr was founded in Hungary in 1996, followed by the gradual establishment of professional Red Nose Clowndoctor programs in the Czech Republic , Slovakia , Slovenia , Poland , Lithuania , Germany , Croatia and in Palestine.

In March 2003, the non-profit foundation “Rote Nasen Clowndoctors International” was founded in order to create an organizational structure that manages this artistically and scientifically high-quality care program for over 500,000 patients.

The purposes of this foundation include:

  • Development and coaching of red nose organizations in other countries; these are bound by partnership contracts to Rote Nasen International and their artistic and organizational guidelines, and must comply with the common management and quality standards.
  • International knowledge management of clown work and joint research on the subject of “humor and health”
  • Operation of the International School of Humor “ISH Vienna”, which was founded by the foundation.

The documentary “For a smile …” by German filmmakers Pirmin Styrnol and Till Mayer , which premiered at the Bamberg Short Film Festival in January 2019 , accompanied a group of international clown doctors on their mission to Kiev.

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