Lorenz, Max

BORN 10 May 1901, Düsseldorf, Nordrhein-Westfalen - DIED 11 Jan 1975, Salzburg
BIRTH NAME Sülzenfuss, Max
GRAVE LOCATION Wien: Zentralfriedhof, Simmeringer Hauptstraße 234, Simmering (Gruppe 40, Nummer 037)

Tenor Max Lorenz studied with Ernst Grenzebach in Berlin during the 1920s. He debuted in Desden in 1927 at the Semperoper. From 1929 until 1944 he was engaged at the Staatsoper in Berlin and between 1933 and 1939 he sang the toughests parts at the Festspiele in Bayreuth. In 1937 he performed during the crowning ceremony of king George VI.

Lorenz was homosexual but in 1932 he had married the Jewish Charlotte Appel, who hardly left his side to escape from being arrested by the nazis. In 1943 she and her mother were almost arrested but Lotte Lorenz managed to call Hermann Göring's sister and Göring ordered the SS to leave the women alone. Göring offered Lorenz and his family his personal protection afterwards.

From 1941 until 1962 he held an engagement at the Staatsoper in Vienna, where he was very successfull in Wagner parts. After the war he supported Winnifred Wagner during her de-Nazification trial because she had supported him when he was in danger because of his homosexuality.

In 1950 he sang the part of Siegfried in "Götterdämerung" at La Scala in Milan, conducted by Wilhelm Fürtwangler. Some of his performances were recorded and have survived.

Related persons
• cooperated with Furtwängler, Wilhelm
• cooperated with Konetzni, Hilde
• performed work of Wagner, Richard
• cooperated with Wagner-Williams, Winnifred


The grave of Max Lorenz at the Zentralfriedhof, Vienna.
Picture by Androom (25 Aug 2005)


• Budig, Robert S. et al, Ehrengräber am Wiener Zentralfriedhof, Compress Verlag Wien, Wien
Wikipedia (EN): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Max_Lorenz_(tenor)

Lortel, Lucille

Published: 21 Dec 2008
Last update: 16 Jan 2022