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Karl Wolfram (Baritone)

Born: 1913 (?) - Berlin, Germany
Died: May 1989 - Düsseldorf, Germany

The German baritone, Karl Wolfram, received his training at Musikhochschule Berlin.

Karl Wolfram made his debut in 1936 in a concert in Berlin. In 1937 he won a big international singing competition in Vienna. From 1937 to 1938 he sang at the Stadttheater of Innsbruck, then successively at the Opera Houses of Königsberg (East Prussia, 1938-1941) and Leipzig (1941-1943) and in 1943-1944 at the Deutschen Opernhaus Berlin. After World War II, he belonged from 1946 to 1951 the Berliner Staatsoper, where he appeared successfully, among other things, in 1950 as Golo in Pelléas et Mélisande. From 1951 to 1955 he was engaged at the Opera House of Düsseldorf, and from 1955 to 1959 at the Opera House of Wuppertal. In Wuppertal he could be heard in 1955 in the title role of Alban Bergís Wozzeck. He appeared from 1959 to 1963 at the Stadttheater of Krefeld, and from 1962 to 1964 at the Deutschen Gastspieloper. Expanded appearance activity all around Europe: at Milanís La Scala, at the Grand Opéra Paris, at the Teatro Liceo Barcelona (1954), at the Wiener Staatsoper, in Helsinki and Gent, as well as at the Salzburg festival.

On the stage Karl Wolfram sang a repertoire, which covered altogether 80 roles. He was estimated particularly in roles as: Hans Sachs, Wotan in Der Ring des Nibelungen, Der fliegende Holländer, Amfortas in Parsifal, Kurwenal in Tristan, Scarpia in Tosca, Don Giovanni, Jago in Othello and Pizarro in Fidelio.

In the concert hall Karl Wolfram had great successes in the areas of oratorios as well as Lieder singing. Thus he sang at the Salzburg Festival 1951 the bass-solo in Schöpfung, 1952 in Messiah by George Frideric Handel, in 1957 in a concert with sacred music of Mozart. He was married with the mezzo-soprano Veronica Peuser.

Recordings: On Urania he sings Kurwenal in complete recording of Tristan. Further recordings on Polydor and on HMV (Masses of J.S. Bach).

Source: Operissimo Website, English translation by Aryeh Oron (May 2004)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (May 2004); Manfred Krugmann (Dates, May 2011; Photos 01-02, July 2011)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Helmut Koch


BWV 201. BWV 205 [1st]

Fritz Lehmann


BWV 232

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