Born Horst Rüdiger Neumeier, he studied music in Munich from 1960 to 1965, and took private voice lessons with Rudolf Laubenthal – he was not only Laubenthal's only pupil ever, but Laubenthal
even him, hence the new family name.
He made his debut in 1967 as Don Ottavio at the Mozart Festival Würzburg. As for the next years of his career, every
source gives different information, it's impossible to figure out what's true and what not. He was definitely a member of the
Stuttgart Staatsoper and the Deutsche Oper Berlin, perhaps also of the theaters in Basel and Zürich; when exactly: see
above, impossible to figure out. In any case, he made his debut at the Salzburg Festival in 1968, at the Bayreuth Festival
(as Steuermann) in 1970, and at the Glyndebourne Festival in 1972.
In the 1970s and well into the 1980s, he made an excellent international career: Staatsoper Vienna, Hamburg, Munich,
Teatro Colón, Paris Opéra, Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, Lisbon, Madrid... He specialized in Mozart, and in 20th
century opera; also very active as a concert singer.
After his career, he taught voice in Würzburg.
On a personal note, Horst Laubenthal was the lead tenor in the very first opera performance that I saw in my life, Così
fan tutte at the Vienna Staatsoper. He did not do anything wrong, he did not rouse any enthusiasm; small-voiced, decent, far
from disturbing in any way, he was nevertheless not the reason why I grew into a regular operagoer.
Reference 2 and picture source
Reference 4: Kutsch & Riemens