He celebrated success not only as an actor, but also as a singer, director and artistic director. Today the versatile Volker Lechtenbrink died of a serious illness at the age of 77.

Hamburg (AP) – Actor, singer and director Volker Lechtenbrink died with his family on Monday following a serious illness, as announced by his agency and the Hamburg Ernst-Deutsch-Theater. Lechtenbrink was 77 years old.

He celebrated his big breakthrough at the age of 14 when he played one of the seven boys in Bernhard Wicki’s anti-war film “Die Brücke” (1959) who had to defend a bridge shortly before the end of the war. After working in theaters in Hanover, Cologne, Berlin, Munich and Hamburg, numerous television appearances followed (“Derrick”, “A case for two”). In the 1970s, Lechtenbrink began his career as a musician and entertainer (“Live as I like it”).

Lechtenbrink was born on August 18, 1944 as the son of an employee in Cranz / East Prussia, but grew up in Bremen and Hamburg, where he ended up as a refugee child. At the age of eight, he took on speaker roles at NDR children’s radio. After starring in “Die Brücke” he trained as an actor at the Hamburg University of Fine Arts and at the Hamburg Freese private theater studio. At 26, he had already played about sixty roles in the theater and 50 on television. “I’ve played everything: from murderers to lovers, from criminals to comedians,” he said in an interview with dpa on his 70th birthday.

Lechtenbrink also became known for his unique sonic voice: as a voice actor he used his smoky timbre like the German voice of Kris Kristofferson and Burt Reynolds. In 1995 he also assumed the post of artistic director of the Bad Hersfeld Festival, and in 2004 he took over the management of the Ernst-Deutsch-Theater in Hamburg for three years.