A young countenor bows out with incurable cancer

A young countenor bows out with incurable cancer


norman lebrecht

May 02, 2022

A courageous message from the fine Australian artist Max Riebl:

‘Hundreds of solo shows around the world. Orchestras, Operas, Renaissance ensembles, Evensong, cabaret and theatre. Spectacular venues. Thousands of hours of practice, radio interviews, photo shoots, extraordinary musicians. Hundreds of hours of travel, uncountable pieces learned and sung. Dozens of competitions. Thunderous applause. Silence and contemplation. Recording sessions. Sleepless nights. Hotel rooms. Loneliness. Laughter. After parties. Tension. Freedom. Bach, Monteverdi, Vivaldi and all things contemporary. Airports. Sacrifice. Sets, costumes, suits worn to a thread and stained with sweat. Difficult to quantify. Difficult to comprehend. An intense, unbearable and mesmeric series of experiences and memories. Some of the greatest and most honorable people I have known. You know who you are and I’ll never forget you.

‘To those unaware, I have been diagnosed with an incurable cancer. The fight has been brutal and relentless and current symptoms make performing and touring impossible at this time. Nothing is set in stone, miracles happen, but for now, thank you for your support, your kindness and appreciation. May the music go on and may the musicians of Australia continue in their brave pursuits, against the odds. With Love. Max’


UPDATE: Hours later, Max died.


    • Tom Booth says:

      How sad – so sudden after his message, which was a beautiful statement in itself, except for the cancer mention. Our lives are a gift!

  • Maria says:

    Dreadful news.

  • Jonathan says:

    Tragically Max died on Saturday

  • Kevin says:

    I’m so very sorry to read this. What a graceful farewell message to the musical world, where he will be sadly missed. I hope his closing days are as peaceful and pain-free as possible. And, yes – I hope for a miracle.

  • Adrian says:

    He has sadly passed away.

  • phf655 says:

    I just did a Google search to learn more about him. I didn’t find any biographical information, but I learned that he passed away today, May 2, and that he was only 30 years old. On the youtube video, linked above, there is a beautiful, pure, voice. A terrible, sad, loss.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      My son’s best friend succumbed to brain cancer at age 25 and that was an unforgettable experience for my son and deeply touched our family.

  • V. Lind says:

    Very sad, and very brave. Good luck to him, and God bless him.

  • OSKAR96799 says:

    Goodnight sweet prince

  • Gordon says:

    How very sad… So young and so talented.

  • amazonian says:

    Truly sad and heartbreaking. A big hug to his family and friends from the other side of the planet.

  • Moya Duffy says:

    How tragic. I saw Max in the Händel Singing competition in London a few years ago- full of life and singing beautifully. He certainly lived his life to the full.

  • Guest says:

    RIP and prayers for your family. Thank you for your recorded performances.

  • Sue Sonata Form says:

    Absolutely diabolical!! Such a tragedy. Thoughts for this still-young man who, Schubert-like, soared briefly.

  • Marie says:

    Bouleversant,magnifique,Quelle belle émotion ,et quelle générosité exemplaire !
    Que Dieu l’aime et le protège !

  • Ambury Hall says:

    May flights of angels take thee to thy rest.

  • Cathy Robinson says:

    Why not try food grade hydrogen peroxide? 35%. It shows great potential to cure cancers.