Partner Wim Sonneveld
Singel 86, 1015 AD Amsterdam, Netherlands
Westermarkt 9, 1016 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Prinsengracht 826, 1017 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Roman-Catholic Cemetery Buitenveldert, Fred. Roeskestraat 103, 1076 EE Amsterdam, Netherlands
Hubert "Huub" Wilhelmus Jacobus Janssen (March 7, 1910 – December 26, 1984) was the son of Wilhelmus Marie Janssen and Jacoba Maria Wilhelmina Favier. He had a brother Wim, who died unmarried and childless in the WWII and a sister Maria. She married at a later age with Mr. van Riet, with whom she had no children.
The father of Huub was born in Rotterdam and had a bicycle shop in Utrecht.
In 1925 he leaves for Utrecht, probably to enter a Trappist monastery there. He retires after five years. In his autobiographically tinted novel De Suikerzoete Madonna he tells that there is a sublimated passion between him and another boy. This other boy suddenly turns out to disappear overnight, the world of the protagonist collapses completely. "It's no longer useful," he says to his superiors. Huub himself would have been sent away after he had told that he was in love with a father.
The contacts between the church and the Utrecht press gave Huub a "very small job" as a reporter at a newspaper in Utrecht. He had to report on a performance of an amateur performance in Tivoli.
"I had never seen theater in my life, and in the break of that performance a young man performed with a guitar and I sang a nice English song with a delightful voice, Blue moon or something. I thought: Oh, I'm going to that dressing room, trembling with fear, I went there, and I did not speak to that theater company at the time, but to that young man who had hit me like that. He said his name was Wim Sonneveld so I knew that for the rest of my life, we felt that we fit together, that we belonged together, it's just ordinary, you love each other and that will stay that way. "
In the summer of July 1935 Huub and Wim travel through France. Huub then goes to live in Amsterdam on the Singel 86. He finds a job at the advertising agency Pätz and immerses himself in the evening at Café Reynders in the circle of journalists, writers and painters. Here he meets Albert Mol, among others.
Wim went back home where his father prevented him from going to the sultry sinful Amsterdam as well. But at the advertising agency, Huub had stationery from various companies within reach, so that he could invite Sonneveld for a job interview under various names.
The masquerade lasted half a year, in January 1936 the eighteen-year-old Wim went out of the house to settle in the city center of Amsterdam.
At the beginning of January 1936 he moved to Amsterdam, where he found a room at Els Wielinga who lives at Westermarkt 9. Half a year later, on 29 September, he and Huub moved into one storey on the floor of Prinsengracht number 826. According to the Amsterdam archive this is with Mr Gaalman, in other sources the Berndsen family is mentioned.
Huub starts an impersonation under the pseudonym Han Hal, which meant only the intention to promote Wim in his career. The pseudonym was not to get the ridicule of his artistic acquaintances from the cafe on his neck.
"Han Hal, special address for arranging party nights, parties, etc. for artists, bands, strings, variety numbers, revues, songs, occasional poems (special composing on request) etc. for lectures, recitals and films on any subject, for written course church latin. "
Living together with Huub was not always possible. Amsterdam seemed tolerant but open-hearted homophilia gave offense. Elsewhere in the city, a group of artists founded the Shakespearean Society, the cover for a gay society.
The two rarely did cohabitation. There was a story (told by a later family friend) that they had ever been put on the street after the landlady caught them in the act.
The relationship is less intense, both of them sometimes have other lovers, of which Wim Ibo is a short-lived affair of Wim. But all friends come and disappear again, until Wim meets Friso Wiegersma. This will be his new love. Huub then slowly becomes a problem, because Wim does not want to put him aside. Whether this is due to his faithful nature or that he was blackmailed by Huub (as, for example, Wim's brothers think), will remain a mystery.
Wim buys a house in France and Huub is going to live there, so Friso is finally freed from his 'resident mother-in-law'. Huub writes his books there and is kept busy by young men who sometimes do so at the request of Wim.
When Sonneveld dies, Huub thinks he will continue his life just like before, with Friso, but is disappointed. Friso breaks with him.
Huub writes two books about Sonneveld and he has a relationship with Dirk Jan Paarlberg.
On January 2, 1985, Huub died of a heart attack at the Gare du Nord in Paris. Part of the Sonneveld archive ended up in the Nederlands Theater Instituut, another part is in the hands of the friend to whom he had left his possessions.
Huub is buried with Wim.
Huub Janssen wrote several novels, of which 'De suikerzoete Madonna' showed strong autobiographical characteristics. It is the story of the isolation of a man who went into the monastery at a young age and struggled with problems that caused him to give up his calling after five years.
BACK TO HOME PAGE