1925 - Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, born on the 28th of May in Berlin, Germany. He is regarded by many as the finest Lieder singer of his generation, if not of the last century. He is probably best known for his performances of Schubert's song cycle "Winterreise," which he recorded 10 times over the course of his career. 1947 - He studied under Georg Walter and Hermann Weissenborn, making his professional debut at Freiburg, and joined the Berlin Municipal Opera as a principal baritone. 1949 - He married cellist Irmgard Poppen in Freiburg. The couple had three sons, Mathias (b. 1951) a stage designer, Martin (b. 1954) a conductor, and Manuel (b. 1963) a cellist. Irmgard died in 1963 as a result of complications from childbirth. 1955 - He became one of the foremost interpreters of German Lieder, particularly the song-cycles of Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Wolf, and Mahler, and has also appeared in a wide range of operatic roles, including Count Almaviva in "Le Nozze di Figaro," Mandryka in Richard Strauss's "Arabella," and Barak in Strauss's "Die Frau ohne Schatten," the title role in Verdi's "Falstaff," and Wagner's Wolfram, Amfortas, and Hans Sachs. He also performed many roles in 20th century opera, including Berg's Wozzeck and Doktor Schoen, Hindemith's Mathis der Mahler and Cardillac, and Busoni's Doktor Faust. 1961 - He performed the role of Gregor Mittenhofer in Hans Werner Henze's "Elegy for Young Lovers," a role that was written especially for him. 1962 - He performed in the premier of Britten's A War Requiem. 1965 - He performed as well in the Songs and Proverbs of William Blake which Britten had composed for him. He has also written several books on music. 1967 -Fischer-Dieskau and pianist Gerald Moore recorded the complete Schubert songs and cycles for male voice for DG, a project for which he won 10 international recording prizes. 1977 - He married Romanian soprano Julia Varady, with whom he performed and recorded often. 1978 - He performed the title role in Aribert Reimann's "Lear" in Munich. 1983 - He accepted a professorship at the Hochschule der Kuenste in Berlin, where he gives courses and master classes. 1993 - Retired from the concert hall and dedicated himself to conducting, teaching (especially Lieder), painting, writing books. 1995 - Bruno Monsaingeon released a film called "Fischer-Dieskau: Die Stimme der Seele," documenting his life and containing interview and performance footage. 1999 - "Top Singers of the Century" critics' poll compiled by British Classic CD magazine, he came second, behind Jussi Björling. 2000 - He was named an Honorary Citizen of the city of Berlin. 2002 - He was awarded the Praemium Imperiale (Japan), which is considered to be the equivalent of the Nobel Prize in the arts. 2005- He was awarded the Polar Music Prize by the king of Sweden.
Page last updated: 1:32am, 08