Wikipedia Thomas Quasthoff (born 9 November 1959) is a German bass-baritone. Born with severe birth defects caused by thalidomide, Quasthoff is 1.34 m (4 ft 4 3⁄4 in), and has phocomelia.
Quasthoff was born in Hildesheim with serious birth defects caused by his mother’s exposure during pregnancy to the drug thalidomide, which was prescribed as an antiemetic to combat her morning sickness.
Quasthoff was denied admission to the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover, owing to his physical inability to play the piano, rather than a lack of skill required for entry to the conservatory. In the early stages of his education as a singer, Quasthoff was promoted by Sebastian Peschko. Thus, he chose to study voice privately. He also studied law for three years. Prior to his music career, he worked six years as a radio announcer for NDR. He also did voice-over work for television.