Why opera singer Clemens Unterreiner doesn’t want to celebrate his 50s

“I always say 40 plus VAT,” laughs the baritone Clemens Unterreiner in the KURIER conversation. We can reveal that today, Friday, he’s celebrating his 50th – although it’s not really being celebrated, because “my birthday can wait for now. Now it’s not about me, but the order of the day is simply giving up and helping people in need. I just feel better that way. I’m going to make dinner in a very small family group, just at my mother’s house with my sister. And I postpone everything else. If the Queen of England can do it, I can do it too,” he says.

“Now this war has also come and that has affected me a lot, because I work together with so many Russian and Ukrainian colleagues in peace every day,” says Unterreiner, who wants to make his contribution with his association “Helping Tones”.

“If people die on my birthday, just 600 kilometers from Vienna, then I just can’t have a happy-peppy party.” He therefore asked for donations to support Ukrainian war victims. So far, 10,000 euros have been collected – the baritone has also reached into his own pocket.

On June 11, he is also planning a big birthday concert at Schloss Thalheim (Lower Austria), “Unterreiner and Friends”, – also in the service of a good cause.

The castle owner is Ukrainian and the director of “Schloss Thalheim Classic”, Lidia Baich, Russian. “I can celebrate with my friends, toast, eat and present the most beautiful melodies from operas and operettas, but also melodies from Vienna to Hollywood, in the open air.

By the way, he doesn’t have a problem with aging. “For me as an artist, I am both the young lover and the old king on the stage. I am once young and made up pretty, and once old and made up ugly. I actually find it very exciting to be timeless,” he laughs.

“I don’t give a fuck about the age on the birthday cake. I’m more happy about the number on the donation check and I don’t care if people think I’m 40 or 60. I’m happy when they love my art and music or appreciate my voice.”

Anyone who would like to support Clemens Unterreiner in collecting donations can register at www.hilfstoene.at inform about the association and what happens with the funds – and donate.