Katrin Laur

Katrin Laur (born 29 April 1955 as Katrin Poola) is a writer, film director, lecturer and journalist.

Laur was born in Tartu. She grew up in Tallinn and completed Tallinn Secondary School No. 7 in 1973. From 1977–1982, Katrin Laur studied feature film directing at the All-Union State Institute of Cinematography in Moscow and finished her studies cum laude. After graduating from the institute, she went to West Germany with her Colombian husband and daughter and asked for political asylum there. Laur lived and worked in Munich and also studied German language and literature at Munich Ludwig Maximilian University. From 1986–1994, Laur worked as a journalist for Radio Free Europe. From 1994, she lived in Berlin and participated in filmmaking, studying also scriptwriting and analysis. Thereafter, she lived in Zürich, Switzerland, for some years.

From the early 2000s, Katrin Laur lived and worked in Estonia again. She supervised seminars for film students in Tallinn. In 2008–2011, she was associate professor of scriptwriting at the Baltic Film and Media School, in 2011–2021, professor of dramaturgy and scriptwriting at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne in Germany.

In 1993, the publishing company Kunst published Katrin Laur’s poetry collection Sõnad (‘Words’). In 2022, Laur published the historical novel Tunnistaja (‘Witness’). The book provides a thorough look into Estonian history and culture from an unexpected viewpoint — through the eyes of the Catholic priest Eduard Profittlich.  The events described in the book happen in Estonia, Germany and Vatican in 1930–1942. In 2023, Katrin Laur was awarded the Jaan Kross Literary Prize for the novel. She has been a member of the Estonian Writers’ Union from 2022.

L. P. (Translated by I. A.)

Books in Estonian

Tunnistaja: ajalooline romaan. Tallinn: Hea Lugu, 2022.
829 lk.

Sõnad: luuletusi 1987–1990. Tallinn: Kunst, 1993. 94 lk.