|Claudia||(2006 - present)|
Resides in Berlin with his wife Claudia and her daughter.
Winner of five Grammy Awards for "Best Classical Vocal Performance" (2000, 2004, 2006) and "Best Choral Performance" (2008).
After his mother took the drug thalidomide against her morning sickness during pregnancy, he was born with birth defects, so he has phocomelia of the upper extremities with very short or absent long bones.
As he was denied admission to the music conservatory in Hanover due to his physical inability to play the piano, he studied voice privately.
Germany's most noted bass-baritone.
A lot of young singers are pushed in seconds, maybe after one good role or one good concert, into the position of world star. It is very hard to hold the position, not only musically but also in terms of the profession.
For me, my disability is a fact and not a problem. I'm not living the life of a disabled person. For sure, I have to handle some things differently from other people. I am in the lucky position that everyone can see it. If you are never happy, if you are only concerned about money or success, that is in my opinion also a kind of disability.
I am in the good position of not being able to make gestures with my hands, so my voice is the only form of expression that I have. This forces a huge concentration on the part of the audience. If you remain still and have only the face and the voice, the audience has to concentrate, much more so. So maybe it is also an opportunity.
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