Symphony Concert N° 8

Christian Thielemann Conductor
Stephen Gould Waldemar
Camilla Nylund Tove
Christa Mayer Waldtaube
Kwangchul Youn Bauer
Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke Klaus-Narr
Franz Grundheber Sprecher
State Opera Chorus Dresden
MDR Rundfunkchor

Arnold Schönberg

  • »Gurre-Lieder« für Soli, Chor und Orchester

»Behold the sun!«

Between 1900 and 1911 Arnold Schoenberg worked on his late-Romantic »Gurre-Lieder«, afterwards describing this composition as »the key to my entire development«. The roots of the story of King Waldemar and his beloved Tove, who is ultimately murdered by the jealous Queen, can be traced back to the Middle Ages. Schoenberg drew on Jens Peter Jacobsen’s version of the Danish saga to create a monumental work that brilliantly opens up previously unimagined vocal and instrumental vistas.

  • 08.03.2020
    11:00 Uhr
    Ticket price:
    45.00 – 82.00 €
  • 09.03.2020
    20:00 Uhr
    Ticket price:
    23.00 – 67.00 €
  • 10.03.2020
    20:00 Uhr
    Ticket price:
    23.00 – 67.00 €

Christian Thielemann

Principal Conductor

S Since 2012/13 season Christian Thielemann has been Principal Conductor of the Staatskapelle Dresden. Following engagements at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, in Gelsenkirchen, Karlsruhe, Hanover and Dusseldorf, in 1988 he moved to Nuremberg to occupy the post of Generalmusikdirektor. In 1997 he returned to his hometown of Berlin to direct the Deutsche Oper until 2004, when he became Music Director of the Munich Philharmonic, a post he occupied until 2011. In addition to his current position in Dresden, Thielemann has been Artistic Director of the Salzburg Easter Festival since 2013, where the Staatskapelle is resident orchestra.

In previous seasons Christian Thielemann has contributed greatly to the birthday celebrations for Wagner and Strauss. At the same time he has explored a wide range of music from Bach to Henze, Rihm and Gubaidulina in Dresden and on tour. In the Semperoper he recently conducted new productions of »Der Freischütz« and »Ariadne auf Naxos« while for the Salzburg Easter Festival he interpreted »Die Walküre« and »Tosca«.

Christian Thielemann maintains close ties to the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, whose New Year’s Concert he conducted in 2019. Following his debut at the Bayreuth Festival in 2000, he has returned every

year to thrill audiences with benchmark interpretations. After serving five years as the festival’s Musical Advisor, in June 2015 he became its Music Director. In addition, he has been invited to conduct the leading orchestras of Europe, the United States, Israel and Asia.

As a UNITEL exclusive artist, Christian Thielemann has a comprehensive catalogue of recordings. His most recent projects with the Staatskapelle have been to record the symphonies of Johannes Brahms and Anton Bruckner as well as numerous operas.

Christian Thielemann is an honorary member of the Royal Academy of Music in London and holds honorary doctorates from the Franz Liszt University of Music in Weimar and the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. In May 2015 he was awarded the Richard Wagner Prize by the Richard Wagner Society of the city of Leipzig, followed by the Prize of the Semperoper Trust in October 2016. He is patron of the Richard-Wagner-Stätten in Graupa as well as the 49th International youth competition »jugend creativ« of the Volksbanken and Raiffeisenbanken. In 2019 he was awarded honorary membership of the Gustav Mahler Society in Hamburg. His recordings have been showered with awards.

Camilla Nylund

Camilla Nylund, born in Vaasa (Finland), first studied with Eva Illes, later in the opera and song class at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. In December 1995 the International Mozarteum Foundation awarded her the Lilli Lehmann Medal for her outstanding achievements.

After a permanent engagement in Hanover, Camilla Nylund belonged to the ensemble of the Semperoper Dresden during the seasons 1999/2000 to 2001/2002. In addition to her Dresden engagements, she became more and more a sought-after guest at the most important opera houses. She has sung in Venice, Hamburg, Zurich, Salzburg, Cologne and Vienna.

This was followed by Camilla Nylund's debut at the Vienna State Opera, the Scala in Milan and in Chicago, under Sir Simon Rattle at the Berlin Philharmonie, with Henze's »Floss der Medusa«, at the New National Theatre Tokyo, her debut at the Salzburg Festival and at the Bastille in Paris, Berlin and Valencia under

Zubin Mehta. In summer 2011 Camilla Nylund made her debut at the Bayreuth Festival, followed by invitations for this role at the 2013 and 2014 Festivals. In 2013 she made her highly acclaimed role debut as Sieglinde in »Die Walküre« at the Wiener Staatsoper – she also interpreted this role later at the Bayreuth Festival in 2017.

Recent engagements include last year's debut in »Der Rosenkavalier« at the Metropolitan Opera New York, as Kaiserin in »Die Frau ohne Schatten« at Wiener Staatsoper under the baton of Christian Thielemann and as Eva in »Die Meistersinger« at Salzburg Easter Festival and in Dresden.

Camilla Nylund also sings regularly on important concert stages with leading conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Sir Simon Rattle, Marek Janowski, Fabio Luisi, Ingo Metzmacher and Yakov Kreizberg.

Christa Mayer

Christa Mayer was born in Sulzbach-Rosenberg and studied singing at the Bayerische Singakademie and the Musikhochschule München. The ARD prizewinner has been a member of the Semperoper Dresden ensemble since 2001. Here she sings roles such as Ottavia (»L'incoronazione di Poppea«), Orlando (»Orlando«), Cornelia (»Giulio Cesare«), Fenena (»Nabucco«), Mrs. Quickly (»Falstaff«), Suzuki (»Madama Butterfly«), Erda, Fricka and Waltraute (»Der Ring des Nibelungen«), Brangäne (»Tristan und Isolde«), Gaea (»Daphne«), Gräfin Geschwitz (»Lulu«) and Auntie (»Peter Grimes«). In 2005 Christa Mayer was awarded the Christel Goltz Prize of the Foundation for the Promotion of the Semper Opera.

Guest performances led the artist to the opera houses in Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Venice, Florence, Barcelona, Bilbao and Seville, to the Rheingau Music Festival and to the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival as well as to the Lucerne Festival. In 2007 Christa Mayer performed in La Fura dels Baus's »Ring«-production in Valencia under the baton of Zubin Mehta. In 2008 she made her debut as Erda and Waltraute at the Bayreuth Festival under the direction of Christian Thielemann and has been a regular guest in Bayreuth ever since. In the summer of 2018 she sang

Brangäne in »Tristan und Isolde« and Mary in »Der fliegende Holländer«.

In concert performances she worked regularly with conductors such as Christian Thielemann, Herbert Blomstedt, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Chailly, Fabio Luisi, Ingo Metzmacher, Marek Janowski, Jonathan Nott, Sir Charles Mackerras, Sir Colin Davis and Simone Young. In 2015, Christa Mayer made her debut at the New National Theatre in Tokyo as Erda in »Das Rheingold« and was on the Easter tour of the Gustav Mahler Jungendorchester with Gustav Mahler's »Resurrection Symphony« conducted by Jonathan Nott in Lisbon, Madrid, Aix-en-Provence and Vienna. In 2018 she made her US-debut with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra under Jaap van Zweden.

Highlights of the 2016/17 season were Herodias in the new production »Salome« at the Semperoper, Erda in »Siegfried« at the NNT Tokyo and Fricka in »Die Walküre« at the Salzburg Easter Festival. In 2017/18 she appeared at the Semperoper as Didon in the new production »Les Troyens« as well as Brigitta in »Die tote Stadt« and in the cyclical performance of Wagner's »Ring« under Christian Thielemann as Fricka, Erda and Waltraute.

Kwangchul Youn

Der koreanische Sänger war von 1993 bis 2004 Mitglied der Berliner Staatsoper, wo er viele Rollen seines breit gefächerten Repertoires erarbeitete. 2018 wurde ihm hier der Titel „Kammersänger“ verliehen.

Zu den Verpflichtungen der Saison 2018/19 zählen Trovatore (Ferrando) an der Bayerischen Staatsoper München, Lohengrin (König Heinrich), Simone Boccanegra an der Wiener Staatsoper, Zauberflöte (Sarastro) und Meistersinger (Pogner) an der Berliner Staatsoper sowie Parsifal (Gurnemanz) an der Staatsoper Hamburg. Unter der Leitung von Kirill Petrenko wird er in Mahlers Symphonie Nr.8 in Bregenz singen.

In den letzten Jahren war der gefragte Bassist an allen renommierten Opernhäusern in Europa und Übersee zu hören, u.a. an der Wiener Staatsoper (Faust, Zauberflöte, Parsifal, Don Carlo, Tristan, Tannhäuser), Berliner Staatsoper (Simon Boccanegra, Lohengrin, Rheingold, Eugen Onegin, Tannhäuser), am Teatro alla Scala (Rheingold, Don Giovanni, Il Trovatore, Fidelio), an der Metropolitan Opera (Lucia di Lammermoor, Les Troyens, Maria Stuarda, Don Giovanni, Guillaume Tell), Bayerischen Staatsoper München (Parsifal, Der fliegende Holländer, Tristan und Isolde, Il Trovatore), Semperoper Dresden (Simon Boccanegra, Lohengrin), dem Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London (Lohengrin, Lucia di Lammermoor), dem Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona (Tristan und Isolde), der Opéra National de Paris (La Forza del Destino, Luisa Miller,

Aida, Rigoletto), Oper Frankfurt (Don Carlos), Lyric Opera Chicago (Parsifal) und am Teatro Regio in Turin (Tannhäuser, Parsifal). Außerdem gastierte er bei den Bayreuther Festspielen (Tristan, Parsifal, Die Walküre, Der fliegende Holländer), den Salzburger Festspielen, den Osterfestspielen Salzburg, den Dresdner Musikfestspielen, Ludwigsburger Schlossfestspiele, American Ravina Festival, Klangbogen Wien und dem Beethovenfest Bonn.

Neben seiner Operntätigkeit tritt Kwangchul Youn kontinuierlich als Konzertsänger mit großen Orchestern wie den Berliner Philharmonikern, Wiener Symphonikern, dem Rundfunk Symphonie Orchester Berlin, der Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rom, VARA Radio Amsterdam, Gulbenkian Foundation Lissabon, dem Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona, Monte Carlo Orchestre Philharmonie, dem Orchester der Mailänder Scala, Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Köln, dem NHK Symphony Orchestra Tokyo, dem Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, RAI Turin und bei den BBC Proms auf.

Er ist Mitwirkender auf CD-Produktionen wie Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg der Bayreuther Festspiele unter Daniel Barenboim (Teldec), bei Croesus unter Rene Jacobs (harmonia mundi), in Fidelio (Teldec) und Le nozze di Figaro, Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni und Tiefland unter Bertrand de Billy (Arte Nova), sowie bei Daphne mit dem WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln unter Semyon Bychkov (Decca; Grammy-Nominierung als beste Opernproduktion bei den Grammy Awards 2006).

Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke

Born in Austria, Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke studied at the Musikhochschule in Vienna with Gerhard Kahry and Kurt Equiluz. He made his début at the Opéra National de Paris in 1997 and subsequently is invited to do Goro (»Madame Butterfly«), Monostatos (with Bob Wilson and Fura del Baus) as well as 1st Geharnischter (»Zauberflöte«), Capito (»Mathis der Maler«), Mime (»Ring des Nibelungen«) and also participated at the world premiere of Philippe Manoury’s »K...«.

At the Glyndebourne Festival Opera he sung in more than 130 performances. Other important commitments included at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the Festspiele Baden-Baden, Lucerne Festival, Salzburg Festival, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées Paris as well as the opera houses in Vienna, Munich, Venice, Stuttgart, Milano, Zurich, London, Berlin

und Lyon. Recently he has performed Aegisth (»Elektra») at Staatsoper Wien, Shabby Peasant (»Lady Macbeth of Mszensk«) at Opéra national de Paris, Wenzel (»Bartered Bride«), Franz I./Karl V. (»Krenek«) and Herod (»Salome«) at Bayerische Staatsoper and Münchner Opernfestspiele

He works with conductors such as Kirill Petrenko, Daniel Barenboim, Franz Welser-Möst, Daniele Gatti, Kent Nagano, Christian Thielemann, Robin Ticciati, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir Antonio Pappano, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Vladimir Jurowski.

Future engagements include the Bavarian State Opera, the Zurich Opera House, the Berlin State Opera, »Gurre-Lieder« at the Helsinki Festival, the Bergen Festival and the Philharmonie de Paris.

State Opera Chorus Dresden

Had it not been for Carl Maria von Weber, Dresden’s opera chorus would not have been founded, or at least not on October 8, 1817. It was Weber who obtained royal approval for this initiative; after all, it was his artistic mission (and personal ambition) to establish a German opera company alongside the tradition-steeped Italian opera. Besides suggesting other reforms for the staging of opera, he argued that it was now essential to have a regular choir. The choir started to participate in the traditional Palm Sunday concerts as early as 1827. Major landmarks in its history include the performances in 1846, 1847 and 1849 of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony under the later Kapellmeister Richard Wagner, who was forced to flee Dresden shortly after the last-mentioned performance.

Currently comprising 89 singers, the Dresden State Opera Chorus has now become one of Europe’s finest opera choruses and has been acclaimed as such in virtually every premiere review in recent years. This preservation of tradition, coupled with a growing awareness of quality, is indebted to such artists as Joseph Metzner, Wilhelm Fischer, Karl Maria Pembaur, Ernst Hintze, Gerhart Wüstner, Franz Peter Müller-Sybel, Hans-Dieter Pflüger, Matthias Brauer and Pablo Assante, who have led the choir through difficult times to the present day. The Dresden State Opera Chorus is currently directed by Jörn Hinnerk Andresen, who since assuming his post in 2014 has maintained and developed such qualities as tonal coherence, refinement and reliably consistent precision.

The State Opera Chorus of today has to a significant degree been shaped by its collaboration with the conductor Giuseppe Sinopoli, who died far too early and dedicated much time and effort to developing the choir’s artistic potential. Nowadays, the choir frequently demonstrates its qualities in operatic productions and concert performances. Radio, television and CD recordings bear further testimony to the immense prowess on account of which the State Opera Chorus is much sought after in many places besides Dresden: the choir receives invitations to perform at festivals, on tours and in concerts and has since 2013 worked together with the Staatskapelle Dresden at the Salzburg Easter Festival, which has been directed by Christian Thielemann ever since. October 8, 2017 marks the 200th anniversary of the founding of the Dresden State Opera Chorus. 

MDR Rundfunkchor

The MDR Radio Choir has long been one of Europe’s top vocal ensembles. Enjoying a wealth of tradition and experience, it is the largest publically funded radio choir, and generally regarded by experts as one of the best. Its repertoire encompasses choral and symphonic works, both sacred and secular,
spanning nearly a thousand years of musical history. Howard Arman was the ensemble’s artistic director from 1998 to 2013, following a distinguished line of former directors that includes Herbert Kegel, Wolf-Dieter Hauschild, Jörg-Peter Weigle and Gert Frischmuth. Over the 60 and more years of its existence the MDR Radio Choir has released around 200 albums and CDs. And for several decades it has collaborated closely in concert and in the recording studio with the Staatskapelle Dresden.


Neben den internationalen Auftritten tragen preisgekrönte CD-Einspielungen sowie zahlreiche Ur- und Erstaufführungen zum Renommee des traditionsreichen Chores bei. In der Nachfolge von Howard Arman übernahm mit Beginn der Spielzeit 2015/2016 Risto Joost die künstlerische Leitung des Chores.