Lenya: A Life by Donald Spoto
Born in Vienna in the last years of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, growing up in Berlin during the 20s and early 30s, and dying in New York in 1981, Lotte Lenya's life spanned most of the great intellectual artistic currents of the twentieth century. This biography describes her marriage to Kurt Weill, one of the century's major composers, and her later three husbands a writer, a painter and a movie producer. Her numerous lovers included the painter Max Ernst and the Secretary General of the United Nations, Dag Hammerskjold, as well as numerous women. From an obscure childhood of grinding poverty she graduated in post-war America to a world of stardom and celebrity on Broadway and in the movies, though it is perhaps her musical collaborations with Brecht and Weill for which she is most famous.