This is a wonderfully enjoyable 1988 Danish Broadcasting Corporation interview (in English with Danish subtitles) that offers trivia, insights, entertainment (including a host flummoxed by Leonard Cohen’s unanticipated answers to her queries), and even a bit or two of wisdom. Specific items discussed include the following:
- The origins and significance of the I’m Your Man album cover art
- The meaning of “They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom for trying to change the system from within” in First We Take Manhattan
- Leonard’s favorite color: Yellow
- Leonard’s favorite writer: Robertson Davies1
- The impact of Federico García Lorca on Leonard Cohen
- Leonard’s favorite game: Thumb-wrestling
- The feelings embedded in The Favourite Game by Leonard Cohen
- Leonard’s notion of the title “poet”
- Leonard’s assertion that wisdom comes with laughter or a sense of entertainment (e.g., the Sermon on the Mount had to be expressed with drama)
Viewing The Video
The video cannot be embedded and, indeed, is difficult to locate, especially if one doesn’t read Danish. To find it
- Go to VIDEO Leonard Cohen ”tommel-bryder” DR-vært under 1988-interview, a screenshot of which is shown below. The large video at the top offers only the thumb-wrestling portion of the interview.
- To see the full interview, scroll down the page and click on the the video circled below in red.
The Leonard Cohen Reading List
Fifth Business by Robertson Davies is the latest entry to the Leonard Cohen Reading List, a compilation of books commended by the Canadian singer-songwriter. While Leonard doesn’t name a specific work by Davies, naming him his favorite writer seems to mandate an addition to the Leonard Cohen Reading List so I’ve chosen a representative novel.
All entries in the Leonard Cohen Reading List can be found at
I am republishing selected posts from my former Leonard Cohen site, Cohencentric, here on AllanShowalter.com (these posts can be found at Leonard Cohen). This entry was originally posted Dec 29, 2016.
- A personal favorite of DrHGuy; see Elegant Eulogies: Robertson Davies On “The Great Theatre of Life”