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From the desk to the big stage

Employees Sarah Nonnenmacher and Katharina Glaser sang along with Peter Maffay at the Works Council meeting.

When talking to Sarah Nonnenmacher and Katharina Glaser, you can’t imagine what powerful voices the young employees at the Wolfsburg plant have. More than 10,000 employees got a chance to hear them during the most recent Works Council meeting. Together with the Philharmonic Volkswagen Orchestra, they sang Peter Maffay's hit “Growing up was never for me” (“Ich wollte nie erwachsen sein”).

Sarah Nonnenmacher has been active as a youth and apprentice representative in the shop stewards leadership body since 2015 and originally came from the gear production facility. Katharina Glaser works as a division management secretary in Group Sales Management. Initially she was supposed to perform on her own. Nonnenmacher spontaneously got the idea to join her after hearing about the planned performance. 

The young women only found out shortly before that Peter Maffay would also be there. “I was excited. Everything went wrong at the dress rehearsal and we only rehearsed with the orchestra twice,” says Sarah Nonnenmacher. But a bad dress rehearsal means a good performance – at least according to the old adage among performers. Attendees of the Works Council meeting would certainly confirm that.

"I was excited. Everything went wrong at the dress rehearsal and we only rehearsed with the orchestra twice"

Sarah Nonnemacher

The two employees had already shared a stage several times previously. Sarah Nonnenmacher's biggest performance so far was during a demonstration in front of about 4,000 attendees. And Katharina Glaser knows what it is like to stand in front of an audience through her work with the KathiCo acoustic trio. But the dimensions of the Works Council meeting were quite a different matter. “I've never performed for so many people before. It makes a difference whether it is 1,000 or 10,000,” Glaser admits.

And what was it like to sing with Peter Maffay, who suddenly started singing in the chorus? “Totally cool,” says Nonnenmacher. She was delighted that the performance was also well received by her colleagues. “Someone on our Facebook page commented that our performance at the Works Council meeting was especially nice in these turbulent times.” Glaser also received only positive feedback: “A lot of people said the performance was really terrific.”

Growing up was never for me

1st Verse:

Growing up was never for me,
I fought it all for gain and again.
On the surface I was hard as can be
but underneath I felt the pain.
Somewhere far inside
the child in me is still breathing.
Only then, when that tiny pulse should end,
for me,
it’ll be too late.
Too late. Too “spät.”


Lyrics: Peter Maffay and Rolf Zuckowski, as translated by Duncan Townsend
© Universal Music Publishing Group