Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon

To advanced search

For more advanced searches and combinations please use the Språkbanken tool Karp. This is particularly relevant for researchers seeking to analyse the information contained in SKBL (Biographical Dictionary of Swedish Women).

  To Karp (External link)

Eva Christina Säfström


Actor, singer

Eva Säfström was an actor and a singer in Stockholm.

Eva Christina Säfström and her twin sister Eleonora Säfström were born in Stockholm in 1770. Their parents were Johan Fredrik Säfström, a factory inspector, and Brita Christina Lindholm. The sisters grew up in Stockholm and they both began their careers as members of the choir at Kungliga Teatern (now Kungliga Operan). A mademoiselle Säfström is already listed in 1985 in Kongl. Svenska Theaterns Almanach för 1785 amongst those receiving a salary in the choir. It is impossible to tell which of the twin sisters this referred to. The following year both sisters appear but for the period of 1787–1789 only Eva Säfström is noted. Her twin had at that point decided to transfer to the Stenborg theatre. Eva Säfström was at this time appearing on both stages. She apparently remained at the opera until 1794, and was at Stenborg theatre for the same length of time.

In 1787 she joined Antonio Bartolomeo Spinacuta’s troupe of actors and went on tour with them. Many of these travelling actors were employed at the Stenborg theatre so Eva Säfström must have already been acquainted with and possibly even working for Stenborg. Spinacuta, as he tended to be known, was a Venetian who had performed on Stenborg’s stage at Eriksbergsteatern in 1783. His talents included being a ballet dancer, a tightrope walker, a singer, a musician, an actor and a mime artist. One of the places that the travelling troupe performed at was Spektakelhuset in Gävle, which put on a production of the tragedy called Beverlei where the two lead roles were played by Spinacuta’s wife Helena Spinacuta and Johan Petter Lindskog.

Eva Säfström made her debut at the Stenborg Teater in 1788 when she appeared in Charles Simon Favart’s operetta entitled Bajocco och Serpilla, translated by Carl Envallsson. She and her twin sister – who was playing the lead role – both appeared in this production. Eva Säfström does not seem to have particularly excelled or have gained particular attention from the audience, although she seems to have been a reliable actor.

At some point between 1794 and 1796 Eva Säfström moved to Ystad. She had presumably already met the man she would marry, namely Vilhelm Ludvig von Kaulbars, a captain in the cavalry in the Mörnerska husarregementet. The couple had a daughter, born in June 1796, and in 1800 they are registered as living in the same household. In 1802 their son was born. It was not until April 1820, however, that the couple got married. There are several potential reasons for such a late marriage, but Eva Säfström’s experience of living with a man and bearing him children whilst not married to him was common to many female actors at that time. Ludvig von Kaulbars had apparently promised to marry another woman and it was not until Lund cathedral chapter released him from that promise that he could marry Eva Säfström. He died just a year later. Eva Säfström’s sister, who had already been living in Ystad for some time, then moved in with her twin and they lived together until Eva Säfström’s death in 1831.

Marie Steinrud
(Translated by Alexia Grosjean)

Published 2020-09-24

You are welcome to cite this article but always provide the author’s name as follows:

Eva Christina Säfström,, Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon (article by Marie Steinrud), retrieved 2024-06-15.

Family Relationships

Civil Status: Widow
  • Mother: Brita Christina Lindholm
  • Father: Johan Fredric Säfström
  • Sister: Ulrika Eleonora, kallad Nora, Säfström
more ...


  • Profession: Korsångare, Kungliga Operan
  • Profession: Skådespelare, Stenborgs teater


  • Colleague: Lisette Stenberg
  • Colleague: Carl Schylander
  • Colleague: Carl Stenborg
more ...


  • Birthplace: Stockholm
  • Stockholm
  • Ystad
  • Place of death: Ystad


  • Daglig Allehanda, 1788-05-23

  • Dahlgren, Fredrik August, Förteckning öfver svenska skådespel uppförda på Stockholms theatrar 1737-1863 och Kongl. theatrarnes personal 1773-1863 med flera anteckningar, Norstedt, Stockholm, 1866

  • Flodmark, Johan, Stenborgska skådebanorna: bidrag till Stockholms teaterhistoria, Norstedt, Stockholm, 1893

  • Kexél, Olof (red.), Kongl. svenska theaterns almanach, för år 1785. Utgifven med kongl. maj:ts allernådigste tilstånd, Stockholm, tryckt hos Johan C. Holmberg., Stockholm, 1784

  • Marin, Sven, 'En gustaviansk landsortsteater: några anteckningar om det s.k. Operahuset i Gävle, dess tillkomst och skiftande öden', Från Gästrikland, 1960, s. 5-[47]

  • Nordensvan, Georg, Svensk teater och svenska skådespelare från Gustav III till våra dagar. Förra delen 1772-1842, Bonnier, Stockholm, 1917

  • Personne, Nils, Svenska teatern: några anteckningar. 2 Från Gustaf III:s död till Karl XIV Johans ankomst till Sverige : 1792-1810, Wahlström & Widstrand, Stockholm, 1914

  • Elgenstierna, Gustaf (red.), Den introducerade svenska adelns ättartavlor. 4 Igelström-Lillietopp, Sveriges släktforskarförb., Stockholm, 1998

Further References

  • Nordin Hennel, Ingeborg, Mod och försakelse: livs- och yrkesbetingelser för Konglig Theaterns skådespelerskor 1813-1863, Gidlund, Stockholm, 1997