Berlin’s Staatsoper Unter den Linden in 2023-24

Highlights in the 2023/24 Season at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden

  • A world premiere and four additional premieres in the main hall (see PREMIERES section).
  • LINDEN 21 format with two world premieres and one revival (see section LINDEN 21).
  • BAROCKTAGE (17 to 26 November 2023), with no less than three different works revolving around the subject of »Medea« In addition to the premiere of Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s late 17th-century French tragédie en musique MÉDÉE (music director: Simon Rattle, stage director: Peter Sellars, stage design: Frank O. Gehry), there will be a reencounter with Luigi Cherubini’s MEDEA directed by Andrea Breth (performed for the first time by an »early music« ensemble), as well as a melodrama by Mozart contemporary Georg Anton Benda. Accompanying Mozart’s MITRIDATE, RE DI PONTO as well as numerous concerts can be experienced.
  • The FESTTAGE (18 March to 1 April 2024) with the revival of Wagner’s RING tetralogy directed by Dmitri Tcherniakov, conducted for the first time by Philippe Jordan at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, complemented by concerts with the Staatskapelle Berlin and the Opera Children’s Orchestra.
  • 28 opera revivals – including Peter Eötvösʼs SLEEPLESS and Beat Furrer’s VIOLETTER SCHNEE, which together with the premiere of Marc-André Dalbavie’s MELANCHOLIE DES WIDERSTANDS form a »trilogy of world premieres« of recent years.
  • In addition, there will be around 100 concerts in Berlin, including 16 symphony concerts (with eight programs) and other special concerts by the Staatskapelle Berlin. Furthermore, a Canada and USA tour of the Staatskapelle Berlin under the baton of Daniel Barenboim (25 November to 6 December 2023) will take the orchestra to five major music centres.
  • The concert program for the 2023/24 season will focus on the composer Antonín Dvořák in both the symphony and chamber concerts. But several works by Anton Bruckner, whose 200th birthday will be celebrated in 2024, are also represented in the Staatskapelle’s symphony concerts, as are Gustav Mahler’s Symphonies Nos. 1, 5 and 7. Works by the South Korean composer Unsuk Chin, who lives in Berlin, will be heard in two subscription concerts, as will the two violin concertos by Béla Bartók.
  • In total, the Staatsoper Unter den Linden will present more than 320 events in 2023/24, STAATSOPER FÜR ALLE in July 2024 with an open-air concert by the Staatskapelle Berlin, conducted by Christian Thielemann, as well as numerous projects by the Junge Staatsoper, including performances by the Opera Children’s Orchestra and the Children’s Opera House Unter den Linden.
  • We also devote special attention to the topic of sustainability with a special concert project by the Orchester des Wandels (Orchestra of Change) of the Staatskapelle Berlin at Kraftwerk Mitte and the SUSTAINABLE LISTENING series.
  • Conductors who can be experienced for the first time at the Staatsoper and with the Staatskapelle Berlin: Elim Chan, Pierre Dumoussand, Iván Fischer, Marie Jacquot, Nicola Luisotti, Joana Mallwitz, Rafael Payare, Giedré Šlekytė (debut concert), Robin Ticciati, Jaap van Zweden.
  • Directed new productions: Calixto Bieito, Silvia Costa (house debut), Claus Guth, Julia Lwowski (house debut), David Marton (house debut), Kornél Mundruczó, Peter Sellars (house debut).
  • Dani Juris will be the new chorus director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden from the 2023/24 season.
  • The new season will kick off with an opening celebration on 9 September 2023.

PRESALE DATES: FESTTAGE 2024 (RING cycles and concerts): Tuesday, 4 April 2023 at 12pm.

Subscriptions 2023/24: Tuesday, 11 April 2023 at 12pm.

All performances of the 2023/24 season: Saturday, 29 April 2023 at 12pm.

ADVANCED PRESALE (For members of the Friends, subscribers and holders of a Staatsoper Card) for all performances of the 2023/24 season: Saturday, 22 April 2023 at 12noon.

Read the 2023/24 brochure by clicking here.

PREMIERES: The opening of the 2023/24 season at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden is all about Verdi, with revivals of MACBETH and DON CARLO in September, ahead of the season-opening premiere with AIDA on 3 October 2023, directed by Calixto Bieito (whose production of Wagner’s LOHENGRIN also returns to the repertory). Nicola Luisotti will be the musical director. The proven Verdi expert is appearing for the first time with the Staatskapelle Berlin and the Staatsopernchor. In his production, Bieito focuses on the chamber-play-like moments in AIDA as well as the tense relationship between the political events of the time the piece was written and our present. Featuring Marina Rebeka (title role / role debut), Elīna Garanča, Yusif Eyvazov and René Pape, among others.

On 19 November 2023, the BAROCKTAGE premiere will be Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s MÉDÉE, conducted by Simon Rattle and directed by Peter Sellars, who is working on his first opera at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden. The stage design is by Frank O. Gehry. The cast includes Magdalena Kožená (in the title role), Reinoud Van Mechelen (Jason), Luca Tittoto, Carolyn Sampson, Angela Hicks, Gyula Orendt and the Staatsopernchor. The Freiburg Baroque Orchestra plays.

The Medea theme is the focus of the BAROCKTAGE, which will take place in 2023 from 17 to 26 November: The premiere of Charpentier’s version of the mythical character and story will be juxtaposed with Luigi Cherubini’s MEDEA, directed by Andrea Breth, conducted by Christophe Rousset, performed for the first time by the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. The focus is complemented by Georg Anton Benda’s melodrama MEDEA, also with the Akademie für Alte Musik and Meike Droste and Max Urlacher as Speaker in the Pierre Boulez Saal. In addition, the program of the ten-day festival includes the revival of Mozart’s MITRIDATE, RE DI PONTO, in which ensemble member Siyabonga Maqungo makes his role debut in the title role, concerts around Charpentier and his contemporaries, a round table, and offerings for children, such as the mobile opera THESEUS’ JOURNEY TO THE UNDERWORLD.

With Antonín Dvořák’s RUSALKA (premiere: 4 February 2024), Kornél Mundruczó returns to the Staatsoper after his production of Eötvösʼs SLEEPLESS, named ‘World Premiere of the Year’ by Opernwelt magazine in 2021. The new production is conducted by Robin Ticciati, who thus makes his first appearance on the podium of the Staatskapelle Berlin. Christiane Karg makes her role debut in the title role. In his reading, Mundruczó emphasizes the topicality of the material: it is the soul drama of a woman and at the same time a modern fairy tale that raises questions about identity and corporeality. In addition to the premiere, Mundruczó’s production of SLEEPLESS will also be seen again in 2023/24, as part of the ‘premiere trilogy’ (MELANCHOLIE DES WIDERSTANDS, VIOLET SNOW, SLEEPLESS). Dvořák will be musically illuminated not only in the opera program: the Staatskapelle Berlin will devote special attention to this composer in 2023/24 in both the symphony and chamber concerts.

On 2 June 2024, Modest Mussorgsky’s KHOVANSHCHINA will premiere, directed by Claus Guth and conducted by Simone Young (who will also musically lead the revival of Puccini’s LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST). In the years between 1682 and 1687, Moscow becomes the scene of chaotic political conditions, the outcome of which sees the energetic Tsarevich Peter (later known as Tsar ‘the Great’) take power. The most diverse parties fight brutal battles for the throne: fanatical sectarians, so-called ‘Old Believers’, the Strelitzes – the tsars’ bodyguard -, anarchist lone wolves and convinced supporters of Peter. The real protagonist of the opera, however, is the people. In the draft for his five-act opera Khovanshchina (The Khovansky Affair), Modest Mussorgsky was not concerned with recreating political events and brutal power games in detail, but rather with depicting ‘the past in the present’ in a massive collage of historical documents – a kind of meditation on history using the means of opera. Claus Guth, as a director interested in a contoured drawing of the characters in their respective lives, will take on Mussorgsky’s unfinished stage work. The version created by Dmitri Shostakovich will be performed, with the finale by Igor Stravinsky. In addition to this premiere, Guth’s production of VIOLETTER SCHNEE will also return in 2023/24.

To close the season, the Staatsoper Unter den Linden presents the world premiere of Marc-André Dalbavie’s opera MELANCHOLIE DES WIDERSTANDS, a work commissioned by the Staatsoper Unter den Linden. The musical direction will be taken by conductor Marie Jacquot, born in Paris in 1990, who will become Principal Guest Conductor of the Vienna Symphony Orchestra from the 2023/24 season and Chief Conductor of the Royal Danish Theatre in Copenhagen from the 2024/25 season. The world premiere will be staged by David Marton, who is working at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden for the first time. The Hungarian-born theatre and opera director and trained pianist and conductor began his career as a theatre musician for directors such as Christoph Marthaler and Frank Castorf. He has directed at independent venues such as Berlin’s Sophiensaele as well as at houses such as the Schaubühne Berlin, the Volksbühne Berlin, the Burgtheater Vienna, the Royal Playhouse in Copenhagen, the Staatsschauspiel Stuttgart, at the MC93 in Paris and at the Munich Kammerspiele, where he founded the ‘Opera House of the Kammerspiele’ Opera work has taken him to the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, the Opéra National de Lyon and the La Monnaie Opera House in Brussels, among others.

The world premiere, with a libretto by Guillaume Métayer, is based on the novel of the same name by the Hungarian writer László Krasznahorkai, who, as a narrative master of the apocalypse, has created a black parable on the current situation in Eastern Europe with his novel. The French composer Marc-André Dalbavie is considered a representative of spectral music. His works mark the opening of contemporary music to different musical sound languages. Characteristic of his orchestral works is the importance of timbres as well as the sensual experience that is at the centre of his works. The world premiere will take place on 30 June 2024.

FOCUS ON WORLD PREMIERES  Apocalyptic, dystopian, utopian: Three major and impressive world premieres in the form of commissioned works by the Staatsoper Unter den Linden have been created for the big stage between 2019 and 2024: VIOLETTER SCHNEE by Beat Furrer, 2019 (director: Claus Guth), SLEEPLESS by Peter Eötvös, awarded ‘World Premiere of the Year 2021’ (director: Kornél Mundruczó), and MELANCHOLIE DES WIDERSTANDS by Marc-André Dalbavie (director: David Marton), with which Matthias Schulz bids farewell to the Staatsoper as artistic director and at the same time sends a signal towards the future. Promoting contemporary music in the form of commissioned works means taking seriously the task of opera houses to continue their commitment as ‘commissioners’ on an ongoing basis and to create spaces for new works alongside established works from various eras, which are questioned as to their topicality, in order to leave their mark on the present and to help shape the renewal of the repertoire. All three contemporary operas will be on the program in the 2023/24 season.

The LINDEN 21 format includes play developments as well as the productions and projects in the repertory that trace the diverse forms of contemporary music theatre. In 2023/24, two world premieres and one revival are on the program here:

With the world premiere of DON’T YOU NOMI?, director Julia Lwowski, who was nominated for the German theatre prize DER FAUST in 2022 with the music theatre collective Hauen und Stechen, develops together with her team a tribute to the exceptional artist and pioneer of crossover Klaus Nomi. The premiere will take place on 7 October 2023, just a few weeks after the 40th anniversary of Nomi’s death (6 August 1983). Roman Lemberg will be the musical director. Nomi is embodied by countertenor Nils Wanderer, among others. Misjudged as a singer, Klaus Nomi, who comes from the Allgäu, was drawn to New York. The visionary German countertenor stood across borders and genres. With his crossover of opera, pop and new wave, he was ahead of his time and became an underground attraction with his extraordinary appearance as a retro-futuristic art figure. David Bowie was inspired by Nomi and hired him for an appearance on the NBC show »Saturday Night Live«, thus helping him to achieve his breakthrough. Even before he could experience his unswervingly pursued artistic path to becoming a valued artist, financed as a seat attendant and pastry chef, Nomi tragically died in poverty and loneliness in a New York hospital as one of the first prominent AIDS victims.

In the world premiere THE TIMELESS MOMENT, also a piece development, the Italian director, performer and set designer Silvia Costa (staging, set design, costumes) and Alain Franco (musical concept, piano) invite you to a sensual, installative listening experience with sound worlds of Claude Debussy and Tristan Murail in the Old Orchestra Rehearsal Hall. The encounter between the two composers addresses the question of what we perceive when we listen. The audience is immersed in the world of darkness and experiences the music with all their senses. Sounds become visual landscapes that move beyond the preconceptions of sight into an inner world. World premiere on 6 January 2024.

Complementing the world premiere of MELANCHOLIE DES WIDERSTANDS on the main stage, Thom Luz’s play development WERCKMEISTER HARMONIEN returns to Apollosaal (July 2024). Both productions take up the basic principles of well-tempered piano tuning formulated in 1682 by musician and music theorist Andreas Werckmeister. WERCKMEISTER HARMONIEN focuses on the profession of the piano tuner, which is usually ignored by the public. The latter is searching for perfect tuning, just as the musician and music theorist Andreas Werckmeister tried to find a new order of pitches and relationships and fixed the foundations for the equal-tempered piano tuning that is common today. The music theatre performance thereby thematizes the human striving for systems of order and perfection.


  • Revival of the RING cycle at FESTTAGE 2024, conducted by Philippe Jordan.
    • Strauss’s ELEKTRA, in Patrice Chéreau’s production, with Ricarda Merbeth in the title role and Waltraud Meier as Clytemnestra, giving her stage farewell (October 2023).
    • Mozart’s DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE in a production by Yuval Sharon, conducted by Kristiina Poska and Giuseppe Mentuccia (November / December 2023 and January / April / May 2024).
    • Strauss’s DER ROSENKAVALIER conducted by Joana Mallwitz who makes her debut at the house. With Julia Kleiter as Feldmarschallin, Golda Schultz as Sophie and Günther Groissböck, as in the premiere series, as Baron Ochs (December 2023 / January 2024).
    • Speranza Scappucci conducts Verdi’s LA TRAVIATA with Pretty Yende as Violetta Valéry (January 2024). There will be a Verdi focus at Staatsoper Unter den Linden in 2023/24 with the premiere of AIDA and revivals of LA TRAVIATA, MACBETH, DON CARLO, and RIGOLETTO (with Pene Pati as the Duke of Mantua).
    • Puccini’s LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST returns in June and July 2024, staged by Lydia Steier and conducted by Simone Young, who can also be seen conducting the Staatskapelle Berlin in the premiere of Mussorgsky’s KHOVANSHCHINA. Other Puccini operas to be seen in the 2023/24 season include TURANDOT (conducted by Rafael Payare and featuring Liudmyla Monastyrska in the title role), LA BOHÈME (with Valentina Naforniţa and Evelin Novak as Mimi, Victoria Randem / Maria Kokareva as Musetta, and Freddie De Tommaso / Andrés Moreno García as Rodolfo), TOSCA (with Maria Agresta / Aleksandra Kurzak / Sonya Yoncheva in the title role and Michael Fabiano / Joseph Calleja as Cavaradossi) and MADAMA BUTTERFLY (with Sonya Yoncheva / Anna Princeva as Cio-Cio San).
    • With Mozart’s IDOMENEO (conducted by Pierre Dumoussaud, house debut) and MITRIDATE, RE DI PONTO (with ensemble member Siyabonga Maqungo making his role debut in the title role and conducted by Marc Minkowski, who also conducts LE NOZZE DI FIGARO and DON GIOVANNI), as well as Strauss’s DAPHNE, three new productions that premiered in the 2022/23 season will return to the stage.

CONCERT PROGRAM: In its 2023/24 concerts, the Staatskapelle Berlin spans the spectrum from Viennese classical music to contemporary music, including works by Béla Bartók, Ludwig van Beethoven, Anton Bruckner, Unsuk Chin, Antonín Dvořák, Gustav Mahler, Camille Saint-Saëns, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Kurt Weill. In the 2023/24 season, the Staatskapelle Berlin will perform 16 major symphony concerts in Berlin with eight programs – in the opera house Unter den Linden as well as in the Philharmonie Berlin. The 2024 FESTTAGE concert program includes Anton Bruckner’s Eight Symphony with the Staatskapelle Berlin, conducted by its honorary conductor Zubin Mehta (29 March), as well as the now traditional concert of the Children’s Opera Orchestra, conducted by Giuseppe Mentuccia, also featuring works by Dvořák and the world premiere of a commissioned work by Marius Felix Lange (29 March as part of the FESTTAGE, 11 April and 1 May at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, and 10 April at the Nikolaisaal Potsdam). The nine BAROCKTAGE concerts (17-16 November) in 2023 will focus on French Baroque music, with Charpentier as the pivotal figure. The BAROCKTAGE concerts will take place in the Apollo Hall, the Old Orchestra Rehearsal Hall and the Pierre Boulez Saal.

From 25 November to 6 December 2023, a CONCERT TOUR of the Staatskapelle Berlin under the direction of Daniel Barenboim to Canada and the USA takes place. With stops in Toronto, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia and Miami and the four symphonies of Johannes Brahms.

The New Year’s concerts at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden with the Staatskapelle Berlin on 31 December 2023 and 1 January 2024 will be conducted by Jaap van Zweden, making his debut with the orchestra. The program includes Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with soloists Simone Schneider (soprano), Marina Prudenskaya (alto), Klaus Florian Vogt (tenor), René Pape (bass) and the Staatsopernchor, rehearsed by new choral director Dani Juris.

As part of STAATSOPER FÜR ALLE, Christian Thielemann will conduct the open-air concert of the Staatskapelle Berlin with Richard Strauss’s Eine Alpensinfonie on 13 July 2024 at Bebelplatz. As always, free admission – thanks to BMW.

In 2023/24, the chamber concerts with members of the Staatskapelle Berlin will focus on the chamber music works of Antonín Dvořák, accompanying the premiere of RUSALKA and the symphony concerts.

The Climate Concert of the Orchester des Wandels (Orchestra of Change). For more than ten years, the musicians of the Staatskapelle Berlin have been committed to climate and environmental protection. At the centre of their activities is an annual ‘Climate Concert’. This season, as part of this commitment, there will be a day at Kraftwerk Mitte on 9 May 2024, starting at 3pm, with a whole series of musical events. The topic of sustainability and artistic engagement with it is also at the heart of the SUSTAINABLE LISTENING event series, which is dedicated to climate and environmental issues in discourse and concert performances (1 November 2023 and 15 May 2024, Apollosaal). The partner of this event is German Zero.

Other concert formats include Prussian Court Music concerts in the Apollosaal, Sunday matinees at the Bode Museum, choral concerts, the Children’s Choir Advent Concert, and children’s concerts for various age groups.

In 2023/24 there will be recitals in the Great Hall with Sonya Yoncheva and Joyce DiDonato, Lied recitals in the Apollosaal with singers from the ensemble, and the evening SONGSCAPES with ensemble member Victoria Randem and pianist Eleonora Pertz.

CHILDREN AND YOUTH PROGRAM: The Opera Children’s Orchestra, which has been in existence since 2018, is a cooperation with the twelve district music schools and supported by mentors from the Staatskapelle Berlin. On 29 March 2023, it will perform together with the Children’s Choir of the Staatsoper under the musical direction of Giuseppe Mentuccia and with soprano Maria Kokareva as part of FESTTAGE 2024. Further dates: 11 April and 1 May 2024 (Staatsoper Unter den Linden) and on 10 April 2024 (Nikolaisaal Potsdam).

The Children’s Opera House Berlin, which was awarded the OPUS KLASSIK in 2020 and is now firmly established in six Berlin districts, is one of the pillars of the educational work at the State Opera, as is the Opera Children’s Orchestra.

For young audiences, the Berlin State Opera offers family and school performances as well as children’s concerts, which are also integrated into the BAROCKTAGE 2023 and as part of which they take place with members of the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. In addition, the other offerings include workshops, rehearsal visits, the composition workshop, projects such as Rhapsody goes Opera or TUSCH – Theater und Schule, the youth choir, as well as the cooperation with the university course ‘Music Theater Mediation’ of the Junge Staatsoper in collaboration with the University Mozarteum Salzburg, the Komische Oper Berlin and the Institute for Scenic Interpretation of Music + Theater (ISIM).

Programs such as the International Opera Studio, sponsored by the Liz Mohn Culture and Music Foundation, and the Orchestra Academy at the Staatskapelle Berlin support young professional singers and musicians at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden.

2 thoughts on “Berlin’s Staatsoper Unter den Linden in 2023-24”

  1. Very useful outline! Am living in Waterloo Ontario Canada. Wanting to visit Berlin and fix travel dates to enable me to attend concerts and operas. Thank you so much for your wonderful posting and program!


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