Large song dictionary

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Cover of the first volume of the 1993 edition

The Great Singer Lexicon (usually briefly quoted as Kutsch / Riemens ) is the world's most extensive specialist dictionary on singers of classical music . The careers of singers in the fields of opera, operetta, oratorio and art song are traced.


The fourth edition of the reference work contains around 20,000 biographies of singers from the 16th century to the present day. The individual articles mostly contain "the artist and civil name, the vocal subject, the life dates as well as information on origin, education, biographically significant stations, places of activity and development of the repertoire ". In addition, “ family trees of widely ramified families of singers are [shown], important information about sound carriers with recordings of the artist and further references [...] as well as the date and cast of the premiere for numerous operas and operettas ”.

The lexicon was started by the general practitioner Karl-Josef Kutsch (* 1924), a collector of records and singer biographies, and the Dutch musicologist Leo Riemens (1910–1985). High school teacher Hansjörg Rost (* 1942) has been involved since Riemens' death , and has been co-editor since 1994.

The third edition (with the exception of the second supplementary volume) was also published as a CD-ROM with searchable full text. The fourth edition will be delivered as a print edition with an additional e-book.


Immortal voices. Small lexicon of singers

  • 1st edition. Francke, Bern and Munich 1962, 429 pp.
  • 2nd, revised and greatly expanded edition. Francke, Bern and Munich 1966, 555 pp.

Immortal voices. Singer lexicon

Large song dictionary

  • 2nd, unchanged edition:
    • Cardboard edition of the 3 volumes of the 1st edition published up to 1991: Saur, Bern 1993, ISBN 3-907820-70-3


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Compare the book presentation at De Gruyter (see under the section web links )
  2. Kutsch, Karl-Josef / Riemens, Leo / Großes Sängerlexikon , product presentation on , last accessed on January 11, 2014
  3. a b Information on the page of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek München , last accessed on January 12, 2014
  4. Review by Jutta Lambrecht