TUM alumnus Anton Klotzner.

TUM Alumnus Anton Klotzner is a successful bridge-builder in both senses of the word: as an experienced graduate engineer and as a sought-after heroic tenor (Image: private).

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Bridge-builder Anton Klotzner
“It Is Your Duty to Use Your Talents”
03. Apr 2018  |  
Reading time Min.
Anton Klotzner was born with many talents: He was several times Italian badminton champion and as a TUM Alumnus he has acquired an excellent reputation as a bridge-builder. Today he excels as a sought-after concert singer and heroic tenor.
In contrast to Robert Musil’s famous hero Ulrich, Anton Klotzner is a man with many qualities. Since his childhood, the South Tyrolean has been as constant as he has been successful in moving between different worlds. Technology played an important role here early on, as did the power of singing or the sound of an instrument.

The man from Obermais had a great weakness for statics and construction, which came straight from his parental home: “My father was a civil engineer and had also studied at the TUM. We were eight children. I grew up very down to earth and learned a lot of about understanding technology from him,” Anton Klotzner recalls. Mathematics was a favorite subject at school early on. And as a small boy he was also otherwise enthusiastic “about all things physical”. He already toyed with the idea of following in his father’s professional footsteps when he was a teenager.

A marked technology gene in the family

It was only logical that he go on to study Civil Engineering in Germany, at the renowned TUM, the South Tyrolean explains. In 1986 he came to Munich – and has remained there to this day. After writing his degree thesis under Prof. Dr. Gerhard Müller, in which he dealt with the dynamic sound forms of the violin in 1992, and after graduating, Anton Klotzner soon acquired an excellent reputation as a bridge-builder. As a structural engineer at the internationally renowned SSF-Ingenieure AG in Munich, he worked on major projects such as the first mono-bend road bridge in Germany near Wittenberg, the Crystal Hall in Baku built especially for the Eurovision Song Contest or the taxiway bridges at Munich Airport.

Anton Klotzner not only impresses with his technical know-how, but also with his striking singing voice (Image: private).

An artist in two worlds

In addition, at a very early age he was – “actually the only one in our family” – enthusiastic about the world of art, especially about the magic of music. “I played at home in the Obermais community band,” he says. With the support of his parents, he quickly received his first musical training – in the French horn.

It suddenly became clear to me, more than anything I wanted to be a singer!

Anton Klotzner

That is, in the same instrument that originally brought Fritz Wunderlich, the most famous of all German tenors, to music. “Another key experience for me was the famous La Traviata production by Franco Zeffirelli, which I had seen on television alone at home as a teenager. It suddenly became clear to me, more than anything I wanted to be a singer!” And so, Anton Klotzner’s next career soon took on definite shape. “Inspired by my opera-mad aunt, with whom I lived in Munich at the time,” he first sang to the University of Music and Theater, where the then singing professor was full of praise: “You absolutely have to study singing,” was her immediate advice. After private singing lessons and various master classes (among others with William Reimer and Kurt Widmer), today’s heroic tenor has been performing regularly since 1998.

Personal freedom is what is most important to him

Händel, Donizetti and Verdi as well as major operetta roles are now part of his broad repertoire as a “singer-actor”, as he describes himself. His previous highlight was a solo concert with the New Philharmonic Orchestra of Hong Kong, where he sang great Puccini arias and the famous tenor solo part from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony to 3,500 enthusiastic listeners.

Since then Anton Klotzner has been performing exclusively at least six months a year as a concert and opera singer: “This is my absolute dream job! It’s where I’m free, not employed, that’s what I like best.” He also works regularly as a freelancer on major construction projects, because for him “the work of a construction engineer is just as creative as that of an artist”. Anton Klotzner has also passed on his family’s technical gene: his son Oliver has already earned a Bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and plans to begin a master’s degree at the TUM in the fall. Everything has come full circle.

TUM alumnus Anton Klotzner.

Anton Klotzner (Image: private).

Anton Klotzner

Degree in Civil Engineering, 1992


Anton Klotzner had already inherited the engineering gene from his father. Together with seven siblings, the native South Tyrolean grew up as the son of a civil engineer near Merano.

He already showed great interest in Mathematics and Physics while at school and studied Civil Engineering at the TUM from 1986 to 1992. After graduating, Anton Klotzner worked for many years as a bridge construction specialist for the Munich engineering office SSF-Ingenieure AG, until he decided in 2005 to place his main professional focus on his own singing career.

Since then, the Munich-based heroic tenor has been a busy singer at various concert series and operetta festivals throughout the Alps. He already wrote in his degree thesis: “There are two types of truth: the truth that lights up the way ahead, and the truth that warms the heart. The one is science, the other is art. And they only find meaning when you have both of them together.”