The 2019/20 season at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden

The Staatsoper Unter den Linden is pleased to present the program for the 2019/20 season. Special highlights are seven premieres on the main stage, the format LINDEN 21 (featuring two world premieres, one German premiere and two revivals), the second BAROCKTAGE festival (1 to 10 November 2019, with a focus on Scarlatti and Purcell) and the 25th FESTTAGE festival (4 to 12 April 2020, with a new Mozart-Da-Ponte cycle being launched and with the cyclic performance of all of Beethoven’s symphonies). The program includes 28 revivals of opera works as well as more than 70 concerts. In the 2019/20 season you can look forward to more than 300 performances plus a large number of projects undertaken by the Junge Staatsoper. Furthermore, the Staatskapelle Berlin celebrates its 450th anniversary in 2020. A special birthday, which will be placed centre stage in the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons.


Out of the seven premieres in the 2019/20 season, six will be Staatsoper staging debuts: For the first time David Bösch, Romeo Castellucci, Damián Szifron (opera debut), André Heller (opera debut), David McVicar and Vincent Huguet will stage works at the Staatsoper. The seventh premiere will be staged by Claus Guth, who presents his sixth work for the Staatsoper. In addition, for the premieres of LINDEN 21, Letizia Renzini, Pauline Beaulieu and Thom Luz will have their debut at Staatsoper Unter den Linden.

In the 2019/20 season, Daniel Barenboim will conduct the opening premiere of Otto Nicolais DIE LUSTIGEN WEIBER VON WINDSOR on 3 October directed by David Bösch. This work had its world premiere at the Staatsoper Berlin (at that time Königliche Hofoper Berlin) in 1849 and now returns to the opera house more than 30 years after its last staging. René Pape gives his debut with the role of Sir John Falstaff, and the further cast features Michael Volle, Pavol Breslik and Anna Prohaska. The theme of »Falstaff« will also recur in the remaining program, with the revival of Verdi’s FALSTAFF and in one of the symphony concerts (Abonnementkonzerte) presenting Elgar’s Symphonic Study »Falstaff«.

Argentine film director Damián Szifron, who was nominated for an Oscar in 2015 as the Best Foreign Language Film with his work »Wild Tales«, will stage his first opera in the upcoming season. Together with Daniel Barenboim he will work on Camille Saint-Saënsʼ SAMSON ET DALILA (24 November 2019) – with Brandon Jovanovich, who will give his role and house debut, and Elīna Garanča in the title roles.

The FESTTAGE premiere with Daniel Barenboim as the musical director, will be Mozarts COSÌ FAN TUTTE on 5 April 2020. This new production launches a Mozart-Da-Ponte cycle to be performed on the occasion of the 2020 to 2022 FESTTAGE, which Daniel Barenboim will present together with the French director Vincent Huguet. The cast features Elsa Dreisig (role debut as Fiordiligi), Marianne Crebassa (role debut as Dorabella), Paolo Fanale (Ferrando), Gyula Orendt (Guglielmo), Ferruccio Furlanetto (Don Alfonso) and Barbara Frittoli (role debut as Despina).

Furthermore, Daniel Barenboim will conduct Wagner’s RING tetralogy twice, which will can be experienced Unter den Linden for the first time in the staging by Guy Cassiers, as well as the revivals of Verdi’s FALSTAFF (January / February 2020) and Bizet’s CARMEN (March 2020), in the production Martin Kušej, which will be performed for the first time in nine years. In the concert program the GMD will conduct four symphony concerts of the Staatskapelle Berlin. In addition to this, he will conduct the Beethoven cycle during the FESTTAGE, the concerts at the turn of the year as well as guest concerts of the Staatskapelle Berlin in Paris.

Besides COSÌ FAN TUTTE there will be another new Mozart production in the next season, namely IDOMENEO (22 March 2020), conducted by Simon Rattle, who counts this opera among his favourite works. For the first time ever, Rattle will work with director David McVicar. The protagonists are, among others, Andrew Staples (Idomeneo), Magdalena Kožená (Idamante), Anna Prohaska (role debut as Ilia) and Olga Peretyatko (role debut as Elettra). An increased focus on Mozart is also visible in the remaining program, with the revivals of DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE, DON GIOVANNI, LE NOZZE DI FIGARO as well as in the children and youth program.

Richard Straussʼ DER ROSENKAVALIER (9 February 2020) will be the first opera ever staged by multimedia artist André Heller. The musical director will be the honorary conductor of the Staatskapelle Berlin, Zubin Mehta. Austrian fashion designer Arthur Arbesser will be the costume designer. René Pape gives his debut in the role of Baron Ochs auf Lerchenau. The further cast includes Camilla Nylund (The Marschallin), Michèle Losier (role debut as Octavian), Roman Trekel (Herr von Faninal) and Nadine Sierra (role debut as Sophie).
A focus in the 2019/20 season is dedicated to the composer and conductor Richard Strauss, who worked as the court conductor and musical director of the Berlin court opera for 20 years, which covers the new production of DER ROSENKAVALIER and comprises the revival of SALOME as well as concerts, in
particular chamber music works.

CHOWANSCHTSCHINA by Modest Mussorgsky is an opera from the Russian repertoire which premieres at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden for the first time since 1958. Vladimir Jurowski, the Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin and the future Chief Musical Director of the Bayerische Staatsoper, will give his Staatsoper debut with this new production, conducting the Staatskapelle Berlin for the first time. The work will be directed by Claus Guth (7 June 2020), featuring, among others, Mika Kares (role debut as Fürst Iwan Chowanski), Sergey Skorokhodov (Fürst Andrei Chowanski), John Daszak (Fürst Wassili Golizyn), Vladislav Sulimsky (Bojar Schaklowity), Alexey Tikhomirov (Dosifei), Marina Prudenskaya (Marfa), Andrea Danková (Susanna), Gerhard Siegel (Schreiber) and Anna Samuil (Emma).

IL PRIMO OMICIDIO by Alessandro Scarlatti will be the BAROCKTAGE premiere on 1 November 2019. This will be the 27th new production that René Jacobs conducts at the Staatsoper. This year he will lead the Belgian ensemble BROCK ORCHESTRA, which performs at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden for the first time. This production will be the Berlin opera debut for stage director Romeo Castellucci. The ensemble members are Kristina Hammarström (Caino), Olivia Vermeulen (Abel), Brigitte Christensen (Eva), Thomas Walker (Adamo), Benno Schachtner (Voce di Dio) and Arttu Kataja (Voce di Lucifero). The premiere is a co-production with the Opéra national de Paris and the Teatro Massimo, Palermo.

The 2019 BAROCKTAGE festival takes place from 1 to 10 November, the second year will focus on Alessandro Scarlatti and Henry Purcell in the realm between Italian and English Baroque. In addition to the premiere, you can look forward to revivals of Purcell’s DIDO & AENEAS and KING ARTHUR as well as the LINDEN 21 world premiere of LOVE, YOU SON OF A BITCH – a work developed by Letizia Renzini, where music by Alessandro and Domenico Scarlatti merge with live electronics (world premiere: 25 October, more performances in October and during the Barocktage). The program furthermore comprises a round table discussion and 16 concerts also focused on the two composers Scarlatti and Purcell Among the guests of the festival are the Akademie für Alte Musik conducted by Fabio Biondi with Raffaella Milanesi, Roberta Invernizzi, Sonia Prina and Aaron Sheehan as soloists performing Scarlatti’s oratorio »La Vergine addolorata«, Le Concert des Nations under the musical direction of Jordi Savall, the RIAS Kammerchor with Robert Hollingworth, The Talis Scholars with Peter Phillips, the Accademia Bizantina conducted by Ottavio Dantone with Serena Sáenz Molinero and Delphine Galou as soloists as well as Christian Zacharias, Dorothee Oberlinger, Margret Köll and Jean Rondeau.

LINDEN 21 covers the productions and projects of the program which try to find new forms of performance and response for contemporary music theatre. In 2019/20 there will be two world premieres, one German premiere as well as two revivals – USHER by Claude Debussy / Annelies Van Parys, directed by Philipp Quesne and HIMMELERDE, a music theatre with masks by Familie Flöz and Musicbanda Franui.
The first Linden 21 production of the new season will be the world premiere of LOVE, YOU SON OF A BITCH on 25 October 2019 in the Alter Orchesterprobensaal, a work developed by Letizia Renzini. Her works were performed for example at the Biennale di Venezia, at the Tanzeshus Stockholm, the Royal Opera House London and the Philharmonie Luxembourg.
Although Hans Werner Henze and Hans Magnus Enzensberger discussed quite a lot about a small version of their television opera LA CUBANA which was first performed in 1974, the implementation of this project did not come to pass before Henze’s death in 2012. LA PICCOLA CUBANA (German premiere on 28 April 2020, Alter Orchesterprobensaal) is now the chamber-music version of this work – about variety singer Rachel against the backdrop of social changes in pre-revolutionary Cuba – which is performed for the first time in a version by Jobst Liebrecht,conducted by Peter Ruzicka and directed by Pauline Beaulieu. LA PICCOLA CUBANA is a coproduction with the Osterfestspiele Salzburg where the work will have its world premiere at the beginning of April 2020.

Thom Luz, invited to the Berlin Theatertreffen for the third time this year and having been elected the most promising young director in 2014 by “Theater heute”, crosses the borders between spoken and music theatre. It was together with musician and arranger Mathias Weibel that Luz developed a theatrical language combining silence, movement, text and music into a close-knot atmospheric spatial composition. The basics for the well-tempered piano tuning formulated in 1682 by the musician and music theorist Andreas Werckmeister become the starting point for her first work at the Staatsoper, in which under the title WERCKMEISTER HARMONIEN (world premiere: 19 June 2020, Apollosaal) they deal with the creation and dissolution of orders and searches for a truth in doubt, in the space between the black and white keys. The production takes place in cooperation with the Theater Gessnerallee Zürich.


Next year, the Staatskapelle Berlin will look back on 450 years of existence. Reason enough to celebrate this anniversary in 2020 - over the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons. The turn of the year concerts on 31 December 2019 and 1 January 2020 herald the anniversary year which culminates in a FESTWOCHE in September at the beginning of the 2020/21 season - among other events, there will be special concerts like STAATSOPER FÜR ALLE, the KONZERT FÜR BERLIN in cooperation with the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe as well as a birthday celebration in the Staatsoper Unter den Linden. In addition to the performances, the anniversary will be celebrated with a book publication, a CD edition as well as an exhibition on the history of the Staatskapelle. Furthermore, the symposium series »450 years Staatskapelle Berlin« will come to its conclusion in February 2020.


Staatskapelle Berlin will perform 16 symphony concerts with eight programs in Berlin – in the opera house Unter den Linden as well as in the Philharmonie. Four of them will be conducted by Daniel Barenboim. The conductors of the other concerts will be Zubin Mehta, Antonio Pappano, Herbert Blomstedt and Lahav Shani, who will also perform as a soloist in the first concert under the musical direction of Daniel Barenboim. Other soloists are Lisa Batiashvili (violin), Martha Argerich (piano), Yuja Wang (piano), Pinchas Zukerman (violin), Renaud Capuçon (violin), Christian Schmitt (organ) and mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča. The symphony concerts repeatedly establish links to the opera program, e.g. with Edward Elgar’s Symphonic Study »Falstaff«, with a program dedicated to Camille Saint-Saëns, with Modest Mussorgsky’s »Pictures at an Exhibition« and several works by Mozart. In the VII symphony concert, Benjamin Attahir’s violin concert with Renaud Capuçon will have its world premiere - a work commissioned by the Daniel Barenboim Stiftung.

On the occasion of the Beethoven Year, the Staatskapelle Berlin and Daniel Barenboim will perform a cycle of all of his nine symphonies on four days during the FESTTAGE 2020 festival. The concert programme is completed by a piano recital with András Schiff, focusing on Beethoven and Mozart. Besides, the Opernkinderorchester (children’s opera orchestra) will perform during the FESTTAGE festival. Conducted by Max Renne, the children will play excerpts from the 2019/20 premieres of IDOMENEO, COSÌ FAN TUTTE and SAMSON ET DALILA as well as from CARMEN.

The 16 BAROCKTAGE concerts (1 to 10 November) focus on the composers Scarlatti and Purcell. Among the guests of the festival are the Akademie für Alte Musik conducted by Fabio Biondi with Raffaella Milanesi, Roberta Invernizzi, Sonia Prina and Aaron Sheehan as soloists performing Scarlatti’s oratorio »La Vergine addolorata«, Le Concert des Nations under the musical direction of Jordi Savall, the RIAS Kammerchor with Robert Hollingworth, The Talis Scholars with Peter Phillips, the Accademia Bizantina conducted by Ottavio Dantone with Serena Sáenz Molinero and Delphine Galou as soloists as well as Christian Zacharias, Dorothee Oberlinger, Margret Köll and Jean Rondeau. Under the musical direction of Matthias Wilke members of the Staatskapelle Berlin will perform two concerts as part of the Preußens Hofmusik (Prussian court music) series featuring works by Purcell. For young persons aged between 6 and 9, there will be a childrens’ concert with members of the Akademie für Alte Musik. The concerts will be held in the Apollosaal, in the Großer Saal and in the Pierre Boulez Saal.

In November 2019, the orchestra and its Chief Musical Director will be guests performing the four Brahms symphonies in the Philharmonie de Paris.

The Turn of the year concerts on 31 December 2019 and on 1 January 2020 feature Beethoven’s symphony No. 9 conducted by Daniel Barenboim, with Elena Stikhina, Marina Prudenskaya, Andreas Schager and René Pape as soloists and with the Staatsopernchor. Furthermore, Mozart’s piano concert in B-flat major KV 450 will prelude the anniversary year »450 Jahre Staatskapelle Berlin«, which will be celebrated in 2020 and culminate at the beginning of the 2020/21 season with a FESTWOCHE.

The Staatskapelle Berlin, conducted by Ilan Volkov, will perform the Staatsballett world premiere of Georg Friedrich Haasʼ SYM-PHONIE MMXX choreographed by Sasha Waltz (world premiere on 25 April 2020).

The ten chamber concerts performed by members of the Staatskapelle Berlin in 2019/20 are dedicated to the chamber music works by Richard Strauss, who is closely associated with the history of the Staatskapelle Berlin and has conducted the orchestra as court conductor and general music director over 1000 times in opera and concert. These compositions, which are performed only rarely and thus not so well-known, are correlated to works by his contemporaries and the persons he sees as his examples.

Further concerts to be heard are the Klimakonzert (climate concert) by the Orchester des Wandels, the Advent concert with the Kinderchor, concerts in the Pierre Boulez Saal, the concert series Prussian Court Concerts, the museum concerts in the Bode-Museum, children’s concerts, concerts with the International Opera Studio and the Orchestra Academy at the Staatskapelle Berlin, choir concerts as well as special programmes with guest stars.

In 2019/20, song recitals, among others with Angela Gheorghiu, Philippe Jaroussky and Renée Fleming will be held in the Großes Haus as well as with ensemble soloists of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in the Apollosaal.


From February 2018 on, 88 children aged between 7 and 12 have been members of the Opernkinderorchester (children’s opera orchestra). It is in close cooperation with the Berlin music schools that the Staatsoper and the Staatskapelle Berlin enable children to have the possibility to participate in professional opera activities, supporting their development. The children participate in joint assessment twice a month with music pedagogues and musicians from Staatskapelle Berlin and in orchestra auditions held by Max Renne. Under his musical conduction, the young musicians will in 2020 create a link to the 2019/20 opera program by performing excerpts from IDOMENEO, COSÌ FAN TUTTE, CARMEN and SAMSON ET DALILA (12 April as part of the FESTTAGE programme as well as on 21 and 26 April 2020).
The Opernkinderorchester(children’s opera orchestra) is supported by the Heinz und Heide Dürr Stiftung and the Karl Schlecht Stiftung.

The Kinderopernhaus Berlin (childrens’opera house Berlin), which has become a firm staple of many schools, is a central part of the educational work of the Staatsoper, as is the Opernkinderorchester(children’s opera orchestra). In the original Berlin district of Lichtenberg, but just as well in Marzahn and Reinickendorf, there are regional centres, as many as ten school groups were initiated, with the Staatsoper Unter den Linden apulled the strings since the 2018/19 season. All in all, hundreds of children in all Berlin districts can participate who, for the first time in their life, have come in contact with the art form of an opera. In the 2019/20 season, the Kinderopernhaus Berlin (childrensopera house Berlin) focuses on young Mozart. Under the guidance of experienced professionals from the opera world, the children themselves develop an opera, guided by and using Mozarts music. This production will premiere on 29 May 2020 in the Alter Ochesterprobensaal under the title of FINTA MIT FINTEN DER JUNGE MOZART KOMPONIERT.
The Kinderopernhaus Berlin (childrens’
opera house Berlin) is supported by the Projektfond Kulturelle Bildung and by the participating districts of Berlin.

The children’s opera production to be restaged will be SCHNEEWITTCHEN by Wolfgang Mitterer based on Engelbert Humperdinck, directed by Constanze Albert (revival: 13 March 2020).

In their joint production HOMO DEUS, the Jugendklub (youth club) and the Jugendchor (youth choir) deal with biotechnology, cyborgs and artificial intelligence and search for the absurdity and poetry in the world of the future (premiere: 15 May 2020).

Children’s concerts are offered for the age groups of 3 to 5, 6 to 9 and 10 to 12, and are integrated in festivals like the BAROCKTAGE. The offers further include workshops, rehearsal visits, composition workshops, projects such as »Rhapsody in School« or TUSCH – Theatre and School, an opera reporter project, the youth club as well as the youth choir.

The new main sponsor of the children and youth program of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden is the Hilti Foundation, Liechtenstein, as part of its funding priority »Community Arts & Culture«.

Programs like the International Opera Studio supported by the Liz Mohn Kultur- und Musikstiftung or the Orchestra Academy at the Staatskapelle Berlin, support young professional singers and musicians at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden.

Starting on 26 June 2020, the Staatsoper Unter den Linden again invites you to the oper nights OPERNNÄCHTE (opera nights): With public screenings of stagings from the past season and from former years shown on the big screen.

The ticket sales for all performances of the 2019/20 season begin on Saturday, 4 May 2019 from 10am. Ticket sales for subscriptions and the FESTTAGE cycles start as early as on 13 April 2019. Friends of the Staatsoper, subscribers and holders of a StaatsopernCard are entitled to buy tickets for all performances early, starting on 27 April 2019. For more information, please refer to

From the beginning of the 2019/2020 season on, the Hilti Foundation is the main sponsor of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden. Since the 2018/19 season, BMW and UBS have been main sponsors of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden.