The German bass-baritone, Gerd Nienstedt, studied with Otto Köhler in Hannover.
Gerd Nienstedt debuted in 1954 at the Stadttheater Bremerhaven as König Heinrich in Lohengrin, then sang at the Stadttheater Gelsenkirchen (1955-1959), the Staatstheater Wiesbaden (1959-1961) and in the opera houses of Cologne (1961-1972) and Frankfurt a.M. In Cologne he participated in the world premiere of Bernd-Alois Zimmermann's opera Die Soldaten (February 15, 1965). He joined the Wiener Staatsoper in 1964 and stayed until 1973. He proved to be a great interpreter of Wagner roles at Bayreuth, where he was heard every year from 1962 through 1975:as Reinmar in Tannhäuser (1962, 1964), as Biterolf (1965-1967), as Konrad Nachtigall (1963-1964), as Kother in Meistersinger (1968-1970, 1973-1975), as Donner (1965-1975), as Hunding in Walküre (1967), as Fafner (1968), as Gunther in Götterdämmerung (1963-1964), as the Steuermann in Tristan (1966), as the Herald in Lohengrin (1972), as Klingsor (1967-1973) and as one of the knights in Parsifal (1962-1966). Guest roles brought the singer to the important music capitals of the world. He was a guest at La Scala, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Grand Opéra Paris, Opera in Rome, Salzburg festival (1977), Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, at the operas of Geneva, Zürich, Chicago and Montreal, at La Monnaie in Brussels and in San Francisco. He was also very successful as a concert singer.
In 1973 Gerd Nienstedt went to the Stadttheater in Bielefeld (Germany) as inspicient and personal referent of the Artistic Director, than became Artistic Director of the Städtebundtheater in Hof (Bavaria), then in 1985-1987. Artistic Director of the Landestheater Detmold (Germany). He accepted a professorial chair in Vienna.
Recordings: Philips (Parsifal, Tannhäuser, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Walküre and Rheingold from Bayreuth), Karussell, BASF, Wergo (Die Soldaten), HMV-Electrola (Salome).