Dschinghis Khan

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Dschinghis Khan
Dk Moskau live42.jpg
at the Moscow reunion concert 2005
Background information
Also known as Genghis Khan
Origin Munich, West Germany
Genres Disco, pop
Years active 1979–1985,[1] 2005–present
Labels Jupiter Records
Members Henriette Strobel
Edina Pop (Marika Késmárky)
Claus Kupreit (Prince Igei Khan)
Angelika Erlacher (Eltuya Khan)
Benjamin Schobel (Fürst Ögödei Khan)
Past members Steve Bender (deceased)
Louis Hendrik Potgieter (deceased)
Leslie Mándoki
Wolfgang Heichel

Dschinghis Khan (known in some countries as Genghis Khan)[2][3][4][5] is a German pop band originally formed in Munich[6] in 1979 to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest[7] with their song "Dschinghis Khan", which was written and produced by Ralph Siegel with lyrics by Bernd Meinunger.


The band was formed and managed by German producer Ralph Siegel.

The only native Germans in the group were the bald-headed Karl-Heinz "Steve" Bender, and Wolfgang Heichel, who brought his Dutch-born wife Henriette (née Strobel) with him. Louis Hendrik Potgieter, the impersonator of Genghis Khan, was South African. Edina Pop (Marika Késmárky) was a Hungarian who had started her singing career in West Germany in 1969. Leslie Mándoki, also Hungarian, had left Hungary in 1975.

In 1979, the band released the single "Moskau". In 1980, its English-language version topped the charts in Australia for six weeks,[8] largely thanks to Seven Network using the song as the theme music for coverage of the 1980 Summer Olympics. The Australian single was issued in a die-cut Channel 7 sleeve.

In an interview with Russian television presenter Alexandra Glotova, the producer of the group Dschinghis Khan, Heinz Gross, said that in the 1980s, the band was forbidden in the Soviet Union and was accused of anti-communism and nationalism.[9]

Henriette Strobel, Wolfgang Heichel and Edina Pop performing in 2009

The group broke up in 1984 but 1986 saw a brief reunion as Dschinghis Khan Family. Only Henriette Heichel (vocals), Leslie Mándoki (drums) and Louis Potgieter (keyboards) returned from the original lineup. The song "Wir gehör'n zusammen" led them to a national qualifying round of the Eurovision Song Contest, where they finished in second place.

In 1988, Leslie Mándoki and Éva Csepregi, the vocalist of Hungarian pop group Neoton Família, sang the song "Korea" on the opening of the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. Dancer and front man Louis Potgieter died of AIDS in 1993,[10] while singer Karl-Heinz "Steve" Bender died of cancer in 2006.[11]

In 2005, the band members Wolfgang Heichel, Henriette Strobel and Edina Pop started a comeback, supported by a group of younger dancers called "The Legacy of Dschingis Khan".[12] Heichel retired from the group in 2014. In 2018, they re-recorded their song "Moskau" with producer Ralph Siegel and singers Jay Khan, Alexander Malinin and Ustinya Malinin, Jorge Jiménez & Marifer Medrano for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.[13]

Band members

  • Edina Pop (born February 4, 1941 as Marika Késmárky in Budapest, Hungary) (1979–1985, 1995, 2005-present)
  • Henriette Strobel (divorced Heichel) (born November 13, 1953 in Nieuwer Amstel, Netherlands) (1979–1985, 1986, 2005-present)
  • Steve Bender (born November 2, 1946 as Karl-Heinz Bender in Mainz; died May 7, 2006 in München) (1979–1981, 1995, 2005-2006)
  • Wolfgang Heichel (born November 4, 1950 in Meißen) (1979–1985, 2005–2014)
  • Leslie Mándoki (born January 7, 1953 as László Mándoki in Budapest, Hungary) (1979–1985, 1986, 1995)
  • Louis Hendrik Potgieter (born April 4, 1951 in Pretoria, South Africa; died November 12, 1993 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa)[14] (1979–1985, 1986




German releases

Australian release

  • "Moscow" (1980) (#1) (as Genghis Khan)

Dutch release

  • "Kaboutertjes" (1982)

Japanese release

South African release

  • "Rome" by Dschinghis Khan (1981) (#14)[15]


  1. ^ Last single was released in 1984
  2. ^ "Country=France, Genghis Khan* - Moscow (Vinyl)". Discogs website. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  3. ^ "Country=Brazil, Genghis Khan* - Moskau (Vinyl)". Discogs website. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  4. ^ "Country=Colombia, Genghis Khan* - Moscu (Vinyl)". Discogs website. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  5. ^ "Country=Japan, Genghis Khan* - Moskau / Rocking Son Of Dschinghis Khan (Vinyl)". Discogs website. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  6. ^ "Talent in Germany 82: Bringing Home". Billboard. December 26, 1981. Retrieved January 13, 2017. 
  7. ^ Genghis Khan Discography at Discogs
  8. ^ "The biggest hits that never made No. 1 in Australia". Herald Sun. 2 January 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  9. ^ Interview of the band Dschinghis Khan to Russian national channel TV Center on YouTube
  10. ^ Administrator. "Dschinghis Khan - History". www.dschinghis-khan.com. Retrieved 2017-11-26. 
  11. ^ "History". Dschinghis Khan website. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  12. ^ Steppenwind.jimbo.com
  13. ^ Welt.de
  14. ^ Potgieters Sterbedatum auf der Steppenwind-Fanpage, abgerufen 8. Juli 2016
  15. ^ "South African Rock Lists Website - SA Charts 1969 - 1989 Acts (D)". Retrieved 1 January 2014. 

External links

  • Official Site
  • Site fan français
Preceded by
Ireen Sheer
with "Feuer"
Germany in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
Katja Ebstein
with "Theater"
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