German bass-baritone Thomas Quasthoff has announced he is ending his singing career after nearly 40 years due to health issues.
In a statement he said,
“My health no longer allows me to live up the high standard that I have always set for my art and myself. I owe a lot to this wonderful profession and leave without a trace of bitterness. On the contrary, I am looking forward to the new challenges that will now enter my life. I would like to thank all my fellow musicians and colleagues, with whom I stood together on stage, all the organizers, and my audience for their loyalty.”
He will also continue his role as artistic director of biennial song competition, Das Lied, which he created in 2009.
Quasthoff appeared on top-ranked stages and performed under Claudio Abbado, Daniel Barenboim, Christoph Eschenbach, James Levine, Mariss Jansons, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti and other famed conductors.
After making his mark as a Lied singer, he took up opera in 2003, singing the minister from Fidelio at the Salzburg Easter Festival and following the year after with a performance as Amfortas at the Vienna State Opera.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.