MADISON LYRIC STAGE, an award-winning, professional theater company serving the Connecticut Shoreline, recently presented the world premiere of We Lived Only for the Music: Max Lorenz and the Third Reich, a new one-man show written and performed by international Wagnerian tenor Marc Deaton. The premiere performances took place at the historic Deacon John Grave House in Madison, Connecticut.
We Lived Only for the Music is a spoken play with musical selections that follows the legendary career of Max Lorenz, one of the leading German Wagnerian tenors of his time. Lorenz had an operatic and recital career that began in the early 1930s and spanned three decades. Max Lorenz sang all the leading parts in the operas of Richard Wagner, including Siegfried, Tristan, and Parsifal; and he was the star of Bayreuth Festival, dedicated to the operas of Wagner. He was known as Hitler’s favorite tenor, who considered Lorenz an ideal performer of Wagner’s heroic tenor roles.
However, he was in constant proximity to danger with the rise of Nazism because of his Jewish wife and his hidden homosexuality. It was only his association with the Festival, and particularly with Winifred Wagner, that saved him and his family from the terror of the time. But survival came with a heavy personal cost.
The play depicts the dramatic intersection of the worlds of Wagner and his magnificent operas, and the vicious obsession of the Third Reich with eradicating ‘non-Aryan’ elements from German society and culture. It is a story of survival, and of the power of art and music to transform and heal. Musical excerpts from Tristan und Isolde, Siegfried, Lohengrin, Parsifal, Aïda, and Otello are performed by Mr. Deaton within the narrative of the play, which features projections from the life of Lorenz and the times he lived in.
This play is currently being developed for performances throughout the United States. If you are interested in producing or presenting this exciting new work, please contact Marc Deaton at email@example.com.