This is really a special opportunity: Thanks to the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, our members can experience the fascination of the autograph of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s opera »Die Zauberflöte« which usually lies safely in a vault. Dr. Roland Schmidt-Hensel, curator of the collection of Mozart, will present to you this extraordinary treasure for all music lovers. Furthermore we cast a glance into the impressive new reading room which was created in the course of the renovation and refurbishment of the building.
- Photo: Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus: Die Zauberflöte; KV 620, 1791
- In January 2017, we accompanied the Staatskapelle Berlin to New York, where together with Daniel Barenboim it played for the first time in the history of the Carnegie Hall the complete Bruckner-cycle – a unique event which was celebrated by the audience and the press. A very special musical journey, which was especially honored by a reception in the German Consulate General with a great view over New York’s nightly sky as well as a charity-gala-evening. We were also very glad to see our American Friends again on this occasion. And of course visits of museums, city tours and the view over the skyline from the One World Trade Center were also on the program!
> PHOTO GALLERY TRIP TO NEW YORK
23 November 2016 | »Spaghetti tutti«: Eating spaghetti with the Staatskapelle Berlin and the Orchestra AcademyWhile eating pasta together, we get to know musicians of the Staatskapelle Berlin outside the orchestra pit. This time, the evening is dedicated to the young musicians of the Orchestra Academy at the Staatsoper. During a two-year fellowship, they refine their education and get to know the work and daily routine of a top class orchestra. You can get to know a lot of interesting things about the experiences and challenges of working in one of the most renowned orchestras worldwide and talk with their mentors in a relaxing atmosphere.
»Take a seat« – under this slogan, we offer opera and music lovers the opportunity to 'take a seat' by sponsoring one at Staatsoper Unter den Linden and to hereby show their appreciation for this opera house. Anticipation rises as the return 'home' draws nearer, and on 11 November 2016 the members of our association were looking forward to it together: at our first event back at the old and new opera house Unter den Linden! Matthias Schulz (designated Artistic Director) and Ulrich Maas (chairman of our association) welcomed the guests to a reception at the historic orchestra rehearsal hall of the already refurbished directorship building. The festive prelude to the evening was created by a cornet and Wagner-tuba quartet of the Staatskapelle Berlin who played pieces by Praetorius and Richard Wagner as well as jazz pieces. The guests had the special opportunity to already sit on one of the new seats, which are authentic replicas of the originals, for the first time. At a guided tour of the construction site of the opera house, we were fascinated by the historic house behind the scenes of the construction works.
Go shopping in favor of the Staatsoper at Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus and meanwhile get to see artists of the Staatsoper live on stage – it was once again possible on 16 October 2016. On the occasion of the 10th jubilee of this »Sunday for the Staatsoper«, artists of the Staatsoper once more turned Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus into a concert hall.
Right before the premiere of Richard Strauss’ »Elektra«, world-acclaimed mezzo-soprano Waltraud Meier, who sang Klytämnestra in this production, talked about the opera and the last staging of legendary director Patrice Chéreau. The many visitors of the day also got to hear the members of the Staatsoper’s ensemble Marina Prudenskaya, Narine Yeghiyan, Stephan Rügamer and Grigory Shkarupa: They presented opera’s classics from Mozart to Verdi. Elsa Dreisig, winner of the first prize of the international singing contests »Neue Stimmen« (2015) and »Operalia« (2016), David Oštrek, Dominic Barberi and Miloš Bulajic of the Staatsoper’s International Opera Studio sang »Lieder der Heimat«. Furthermore, chamber music with violinists Ulrike Eschenburg and Martha Cohen of the Staatskapelle Berlin as well as a performance of a woodwind quartet of the Orchesterakademie were on the program.
For the 10th time already, Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus donated all daily sales to our association for the benefit of the Staatsoper. This commitment of the Dussmann Group over so many years is really extraordinary and we cordially thank them! We are very happy that a donation of 32.000 Euro will benefit the Staatsoper this year.
We would also like to thank all visitors for their support and their great interest in the Staatsoper’s programme. And of course we cordially thank all the artists who made such a special day possible!
The artist Alexander Polzin creates extraordinary paintings, drawings and sculptures – his Giordano Bruno monument at Potsdamer Platz or the monument »Hommage à Paul Celan« which was unveiled in Paris in June 2016 are well known. The model of this monument was part of an exhibition at Galerie Kornfeld. Under Hölderlin’s quotation »Was bleibet aber, stiften die Dichter«, it assembled works by Alexander Polzin which dealed with literature, poets and authors. Alexander Polzin, who also works as a stage designer, always enters in an intensive dialogue with music, theatre, contemporary and historic literature and history of art in his work. The artist personally guided us through the exhibition and showed us works that are inspired by Thomas Brasch (with whom he had a close friendship), trace to Dante’s »Divine Comedy« or were inspired by Ernest Hemingway, Bertolt Brecht or Heiner Müller. With wine and some finger food we let the evening fade away.
Photo: View of Alexander Polzin’s exhibition »Was bleibet aber, stiften die Dichter« (Hölderlin)
From 30 September to 2 October 2016, the 11th International Opera Weekend of our Young Friends took place in Berlin. Young opera lovers from all over Europe (for example from Oslo, Paris, Genua, Venedig, Amsterdam, München and Bayreuth) came to Berlin to enjoy extraordinary performances and discover Berlin’s many cultural venues. Highlight of the weekend was the visit of the performance of Mozart’s »Don Giovanni« in Claus Guth’s exciting staging at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, together with many other guests under 35 years within the frame of »Staatsoper at cinema pricing. Matthias Schulz, designated Artistic Director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, cordially welcomed the participants of the Opera Weekend. Furthermore, »Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg« at the Komische Oper and a concert by the Berliner Philharmoniker were on the program. The weekend was topped off by a visit of Berlin’s TV tower as well as a guided tour of the Barenboim-Said Akademie and the Pierre Boulez Saal.
»Staatsoper for cinema pricing«: Under this slogan, the Friends and Supporters once more offered 300 young people under 35 to watch a performance at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater for cinema pricing. This year, Mozart’s »Don Giovanni« in the fantastic staging by Claus Guth was on the program. Before the performance, Matthias Schulz, designated Artistic Director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, personally welcomed the visitors at the Schiller Theater. With a glass of wine at the invitation of the Südliche Weinstraße, the participants had opened the evening in the Glassy Foyer of the Schiller Theater. Massimo Zanetti conducted the Staatskapelle Berlin and a great ensemble of singers around Christopher Maltman, Olga Peretyatko, Dorothea Röschmann and Luca Pisaroni. The artists were celebrated by the young audience with great applause.
»Staatsoper for cinema pricing« was made possible by membership fees and donations.
- We say »Welcome!« Together with Friends and Supporters who have been part of our association for a long time, we cordially welcomed our new members at our welcome evening. We visited the performance of »Tosca« and got to see three outstanding singers under the baton of Domingo Hindoyan: Angela Gheorghiu, Fabio Sartori and Michael Volle, who were greatly celebrated by the audience. During a reception before the performance, our members got to know each other and learned more about our work for the Staatsoper.
- 12 July 2016 | Concert for our membersThis year’s concert for our members took place at a very special place in the middle of Berlin: at Max Liebermann Haus right next to Brandenburger Tor. In this fantastic atmosphere, we celebrated the ending of a successful season 2015/2016 with our members. The Tilia-Quartett provided for the musical program of the evening and played Mozart’s quartet in D minor as well as pieces by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy and Viktor Ullmann. Eva Römisch (violin), Johanna Helm (violoncello), Andreas Jentzsch (violin) and Wolfgang Hinzpeter (viola) with their chamber music concert once more showed why the sound of the Staatskapelle’s strings belongs to the most beautiful in the world! At the reception afterwards we could enjoy the view on Brandenburger Tor and Berlin’s Reichstag in front of a fantastic evening sky.
We cordially thank the Berliner Sparkasse who invited us to this wonderful place as well as the musicians of Tilia-Quartett for their commitment!
› PHOTO GALLERY
26 June 2016 | Benefit Evening at Villa JacobsBenefit evenings at Villa Jacobs in favor of Berlin’s Staatsoper Unter den Linden have become a lovely tradition. Marianne and Stefan Ludes invited generous supporters of the Staatsoper to an exclusive concert at this wonderful place at the Jungfernsee. Soprano Elsa Dreisig and baritone Vincenzo Neri together with pianist David Robert Coleman presented a well-orchestrated program with arias, duets and songs – a fantastic and touching concert experience in a private circle. This special summer evening concluded with a festive dinner overlooking the Villa’s park. Thanks to the joyous atmosphere between the guests, artistic director Jürgen Flimm and the designated artistic director Matthias Schulz among them, and thanks to the hosts’ cordiality, this event will stick in the guests’ memories for a long time.
11-19 June 2016 | American Friends at Wagner’s Ring CycleOutstanding singers, a brilliantly playing Staatskapelle Berlin under Maestro Daniel Barenboim and highly celebrated performances: »Der Ring des Nibelungen« at Staatsoper im Schiller Theater was a very special event to which Wagner-lovers from all over the world had been looking forward to for a long time. So had the Staatsoper’s »American Friends«: In June they travelled together to Berlin to see Wagner’s epic masterpiece. The Staatsoper’s designated Artistic Director Matthias Schulz cordially welcomed the guests at the Schiller Theater and Daniel Barenboim took the time to personally greet them as well. The American Friends completed their visit of the city with guided tours and also took a look at the construction site of the opera house Unter den Linden where anticipation arouse for their next group trip to Berlin on the occasion of its re-opening in 2017.
4 June 2016 | Walk through Böhmisch-RixdorfIn the heart of Berlin’s urban and lively district Neukölln, you can find an idyllic jewel: The Bohemian village. Descendants of the expatriates who had to leave their home country Bohemia in the 18th century because of their belief still live here. The architectonic structure of the settler’s village still exists. During one of her popular city walks, our volunteer Ingeborg Fischbeck guided us through this special part of Berlin’s history and showed us for example the »Böhmischer Gottesacker«, one of the oldest cemeteries of Berlin, many historic buildings as well as the backyard gardens in the Kirchgasse which can only rarely be seen.
13 - 16 May 2016 | Visit of the Staatskapelle Berlin in PragueThe Staatskapelle Berlin went on tour and the Staatsoper’s Friends and Supporters went with them! We accompanied the orchestra to the 71st Prague Festival in the golden city by the Moldau. Music, which had always been playing an important role in Prague, was of course in the center of our trip.
On our first evening, we saw Verdi’s »Nabucco« at Prague State Opera. The day after during a guided city tour, we visited the magnificent, neo-renaissance style National Theatre directly at the Moldau. After a devastating fire in 1881 – even before the official opening – it could be rebuilt within only two years with the help of the population.
The visit of the concert by the Staatskapelle Berlin and its maestro Daniel Barenboim who played Bruckner’s 5th Symphony in the splendid Smetana Hall was the climax of our trip. We celebrated the successful concert afterwards together with musicians of the Staatskapelle Berlin during a dinner at a beautiful Jugendstil restaurant.
During four sunny days, we enjoyed this architectonically rich city: Jugenstil, as far as the eye can see! Of course a walk over the famous Charles Bridge was part of our sightseeing walk. We had an impressive view of the city and the Moldau from the Hradschin.29 March 2016 | Presentation of the new season 2016/2017 by Artistic Director Jürgen FlimmJürgen Flimm revealed to the Staatsoper’s Friends and Supporters to which new productions, highlights and special concerts they can look forward in the upcoming season and which evenings they should definitely keep free for the Staatsoper. With a glass of wine at the invitation of Südliche Weinstraße, they planned their opera visits.15-24 March 2016 | Our program for the FESTTAGE 201620 years ago, Maestro Daniel Barenboim brought into being the FESTTAGE at Berlin’s Staatsoper. Since then, they have been attracting opera and music lovers from all over the world. Once again, we have invited our members and guests of the FESTTAGE to enrich their visit of the spectacular performances with further special events and to personally get to know the top class artists.
We started with »Spaghetti tutti« with the Staatskapelle Berlin: While dining with us, the musicians told us about their work for one of the most renowned orchestras worldwide. At our artists talk »ZwischenTöne«, our members had the chance to get to know two world-famous singers: Waltraud Meier, who sang her last Kundry during the FESTTAGE, and Bejun Mehta, the wonderful Orfeo of the FESTTAGE’s premiere »Orfeo ed Euridice«. And after a fantastic performance of »Parsifal«, we came together with artits of the evening at a reception in the Glassy Foyer of the Schiller Theater.
Our visit of the general rehearsal of the concert by the legendary Wiener Philharmoniker under the baton of Maestro Barenboim offered us exciting insights into the working progress of these two exceptional phenomena of classical music. At guided tours of the construction site Unter den Linden, we could get an idea of the current status of the refurbishment works at the opera house – we also had a look into the Barenboim-Said Akademie and the Pierre Boulez concert hall. Visits of the Bundeskanzleramt and of the art collection »Daimler Contemporary« completed our program.24 March 2016 | »ZwischenTöne« – Talk with Bejun MehtaBejun Mehta is one of the countertenors in highest demand worldwide and regularly guest-stars at all international leading opera and concert halls. At this year’s FESTTAGE, Bejun Mehta enchanted the audience with his wonderful interpretation of Orfeo in the premiere of Gluck’s »Orfeo ed Euridice« under the musical direction of Daniel Barenboim. Members and guests had the opportunity to question him about his career as a singer and his view on opera as well as to learn a lot of interesting facts about the vocal fach of countertenor.22 March 2016 | »ZwischenTöne« – Talk with Waltraud MeierWaltraud Meier singing her last Kundry – it have been memorable and moving performances during this year’s FESTTAGE at the Staatsoper. Her saying farewell to this important role that she had been singing on the stages of the world since 1982 led us to make possible an encounter between her and our members as well as visitors of the FESTTAGE. In a most interesting and likewise enjoyable talk moderated by dramaturge Dr. Detlef Giese, Mrs. Meier gave us many insights into her career and her thoughts about the world of opera.21 March 2016 | Meet & Greet with Jonas Kaufmann and Daniel BarenboimJonas Kaufmann and Daniel Barenboim – two greats of the world of opera encountered. Their concert in Berlin’s Philharmonie during the FESTTAGE was a great success. After the concert, the BMW AG, principal partner of the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, invited donors and patrons of the Staatsoper’s Friends association together with members of the BMW Excellence to a Meet & Greet with Jonas Kaufmann and Daniel Barenboim.20 March 2016 | »Parsifal«: Reception with artists of the eveningWe celebrated the revival of »Parsifal« during the FESTTAGE 2016 with members and guests at a reception in the Glassy Foyer of the Schiller Theater. Many artists of the evening came by to drink to the performance and the FESTTAGE with us. It was a great pleasure to welcome Andreas Schager (Parsifal), René Pape (Gurnemanz), Tómas Tómasson (Klingsor), Florian Hoffmann (3rd Knappe), Dominic Barberi (2. Gralsritter), the »Blumenmädchen« Sónia Grané, Natalia Skrycka, Julia Novikova, Adriane Queiroz and Anja Schlosser as well as members of the Staatskapelle Berlin and the Staatsopernchor. The guests had the opportunity to get into conversation with the artists, talk with other music lovers and in this great atmosphere let the evening draw to an end.
› PHOTO GALLERY OF THE RECEPTION16 October 2015 | »ZwischenKlänge«: Opening of the symposium »450 Years Staatskapelle Berlin«
In 2020, the Staatskapelle Berlin will celebrate its 450th birthday. In a series of conferences, the tradition-rich history of this special orchestra will be examined. The first symposium tracked the development from the origins of the Brandenburgische Hofkapelle until the early 18th century. For the opening, we invited our members to Charlottenburg Castle. After a guided tour through the impressive castle complex, we visited the opening lecture of the symposium where Maestro Daniel Barenboim welcomed the guests.
13 October 2015 | Staatsoper for cinema pricing: »Tosca« for everyone under 35»Staatsoper for cinema pricing«: Under this slogan, the Friends and Supporters once more offered 300 young people under 35 to watch a performance at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater for just 8,- euros. On 13 October 2015, Puccini’s »Tosca« was on the program. A fantastic ensemble of singers around Anja Kampe and Michael Volle thrilled the young audience. With a glass of wine at the invitation of the Südliche Weinstraße, the participants had opened the evening in the Glassy Foyer of the Schiller Theater.
»Staatsoper for cinema pricing« is made possible by membership fees and donations.09 - 11 October 2015 | International Opera Weekend by the Staatsoper’s Young Friends
The International Opera Weekend by our Young Friends celebrated a jubilee! For the 10th time already, we invited young opera friends from all over Europe to Berlin for three days in order to get to know our outstanding opera and cultural scene. All places were assigned within no time. 50 opera fans under 35 years together visited the superb new production of »Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg« with Maestro Daniel Barenboim at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, a concert with Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker in the Philharmonie where the audience enthusiastically celebrated the orchestra and »Die Hochzeit des Figaro« at the Deutsche Oper.19 September 2015 | Guided tour of Schöneberg
With her enthusiasm for Berlin’s history and culture, our volunteer Ingeborg Fischbeck every year infects many members during her guided tours. This year, we could discover hidden places of the district Schöneberg with her. For example, we got to know the Lette-Haus on Viktoria-Luise-Platz. The walk ended at the famous Winterfeldt mart where we could treat ourselves to some fine food.03 September 2015 | »ZwischenKlänge« – Meeting the Staatskapelle BerlinMaestro Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin started into the new season 2015/2016 with a brilliant opening concert of the Musikfest Berlin which was dedicated to the music of Arnold Schönberg. Daniel Barenboim afterwards called it a »finest hour« of his work with the orchestra. At the subsequent reception with honorary guests of the evening, our members got to talk with musicians of the Staatskapelle Berlin. This meeting was the beginning of our series of events »ZwischenKlänge« at which our members can get to know the orchestra and its great tradition – in 2020, we will celebrate the Staatskapelle’s 450th birthday!
- 03 - 05 July 2015 | Premiere trip to the Scala Milano: Jürgen Flimm staging »Otello«
At the Scala Milano, our Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm staged the rarely shown opera by Rossini. The stage design was based on an idea by Anselm Kiefer, the famous German painter and sculptor. We travelled to this special event with our members and got to see a cast with great stars such as Olga Peretyatko, Juan Diego Flórez and Gregory Kunde in the Teatro alla Scala. On the evening before the premiere, Mr. Flimm personally revealed us some things about his staging and his work at one of the most famous opera houses worldwide during a dinner. As a very special highlight, we could attend the premiere party on stage and thus got close to the action with the artists of the evening!
29 June 2015 | Lied and aria recital by the International Opera Studio
On 29 June 2015, the current fellowship holders of the Staatsoper’s International Opera Studio said goodbye with a fulminant final concert. At the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, the young singers of the Opera Studio – supported by the »Liz Mohn Kultur- und Musikstiftung« – gained important experiences for their future career for an exciting period of two years. Sónia Grané (soprano), Annika Schlicht (mezzo-soprano), Stephen Chambers (tenor), Jonathan Winell (tenor), Maximilian Krummen (baritone) and Grigory Shkarupa (bass) showed once more their fantastic skills with a Lied and aria recital with works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Gaetano Donizetti, Richard Strauss, Robert Schumann and Charles Gounod. At the subsequent reception, our donors, patrons and master builders celebrated together with Liz Mohn’s guests of honor and watched how the young singers received their certificates.
28 May 2015 | Visit of Alexander Polzin's Studio
In May, we had the wonderful opportunity to invite our Patrons and Donors to an exclusive visit of the studio of a very special artist: Alexander Polzin not only creates superb sculptures and paintings – for example his Giordano Bruno monument at the Potsdamer Platz – but has also been working as stage designer for more than ten years. He has worked with important contemporary composers such as Helmut Lachenmann and György Kurtág and has created stage designs for the Teatro Real in Madrid, the Salzburg Easter Festival, the Grand Théâtre de Génève or the Tiroler Festspiele in Erl, where he was also stage director. At the Staatsoper he created the scene for »Philemon & Baucis« staged by Immo Karaman – this production was financially supported by the Friends and Supporters.
Alexander Polzin, who is being represented by the Galerie Kornfeld in the Fasanenstraße, welcomed us in his studio and gave us many inspiring insights into his multifaceted work and the process of creation. Afterwards, we had the opportunity to talk about what we’d just seen at a little reception.
Sisyphus (Mortier Award), Silver Edition, 2014
Silvered Bronze, Ed.: 22
8 x 10,5 x 7 cm
27 April 2015 | Presentation of the new season by Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm
Every year it is a very special moment when, full of excitement and anticipation, we turn for the first time the pages of the Staatsoper’s season preview fresh from the press. On 27 April, Jürgen Flimm personally presented the premieres, the opera stars and concert highlights of the upcoming season to the Friends and Sponsors. With a glass of wine at the invitation of the Südliche Weinstraße, our members could get started planning their Staatsoper season 2015/16 and to look forward to your opera and concert visits together with other Friends.
21 - 24 April 2015 | The Staatskapelle Berlin and Daniel Barenboim in the new Philharmonie de Paris
The French capital got a spectacular new Philharmonie at the beginning of 2015 and started the first season with a stunning concert program. The famous architect Jean Nouvel and acoustic legend Yasuhisa Toyota have designed an impressing building. Together with an opera visit in the Palais Garnier where Jules Massenet’s »Le Cid« with Roberto Alagna and Anna Caterina Antonacci was shown, the Friends and Sponsors discovered a musical Paris in spring, for example during a guided tour through the Opera Bastille. Furthermore, we visited the building of the sensational, recently opened Fondation Louis Vuitton, designed by architect Frank Gehry.
2 April 2015 | Reception after »Tannhäuser« with Friends and artists
Last year, »Tannhäuser« staged by Sasha Waltz was premiered. On the occasion of this wonderful revival, we got together in the Gläsernes Foyer of the Schiller Theater after the performance to drink to the FESTTAGE 2015 together with the artists. Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm thanked the members of the Friends and Sponsors for their commitment and welcomed with us many artists of the evening: Sasha Waltz, Peter Seiffert (Tannhäuser), Marina Prudenskaya (Venus), Christian Gerhaher (Wolfram), Kwangchul Youn (Landgraf), Sónia Grané (Hirt) and members of the Staatsopernchor and the Staatskapelle Berlin. With a glass of wine the guests had the opportunity to get into conversation with the artists, talk with other music lovers and in this great atmosphere let fade away the evening.
› PHOTO GALLERY OF THE RECEPTION02 April 2015 | »ZwischenTöne« with Parsifal-Singer Andreas Schager
As eponymous hero of »Parsifal«, Andreas Schager enchanted audience and press at this year’s premiere of the FESTTAGE. Since his debut in 2009, his career has gone straight upwards; his engagements lead him to many renowned opera houses. At the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, Andreas Schager already caused a sensation in 2013, when he stepped in as the eponymous hero of »Siegfried« ten minutes before the performance began and thrilled the audience.
We welcomed the exceptional singer for a talk and got to know many fascinating facts about his view on the new production of »Parsifal« and about his career as a singer. The Hotel am Steinplatz offered us the perfect place to get to talk with the artist in a private and exclusive atmosphere and with a glass of champagne and some fine food.
24 February 2015 | Guided tour of the Staatsoper’s workshops
The Friends and Sponsors finance the scenery for the new production of »Parsifal« during the FESTTAGE 2015 – during a guided tour of the workshops of the Stiftung Oper in Berlin, we could get a first glance on what will await us behind the red curtain at the premiere.
On an area of 25.000 m2, around 200 craftsmen work in the workshops to constantly create and re-create the world on stage. The Bühnenservice Berlin, to which the workshops belong, is the biggest service provider for theatre in Germany. We got to know the place where sceneries and costumes are made which we can afterwards see on stage of the Schiller Theater.
21 January 2015 | »Der Freischütz«: ZwischenTöne featuring Sebastian Weigle and Burkhard Fritz
After the performance of »Der Freischütz« on 21 January 2015, a round of talk with artists took place in the Glassy Foyer of the Schiller Theater as part of our event series ZwischenTöne. Guests were Sebastian Weigle, conductor of the new production at the Staatsoper staged by Michael Thalheimer, and Burkhard Fritz, singer of »Max«. The Greatgreatgreatgrandson of the opera composer, Christian Freiherr von Weber, unfortunately had to cancel due to illness. Holger Röder, member of the board of curators of the Friends and Supporters, presented the talk. Lively and entertaining, Sebastian Weigle and Burkhard Fritz explained the backgrounds and peculiarities of the staging from their view as conductor and singer as well as the specialties of the »Freischütz« often labeled as »German national opera«.
22 November 2014 | Achim Freyer’s »Kunsthaus«
Achim Freyer, who celebrated his 80th birthday in the spring of 2014 and whose wonderful stage design has been shown for over 45 years in Rossini’s »Il barbiere di Siviglia« at the Staatsoper, is not just a stage director, stage designer and theatre artist, but also a painter and arts collector. His home, a heritage-protected villa from the 19th century in Berlin-Lichterfelde, is also exhibition space, gallery and atelier. Densely from the bottom to the top of the house, around 2.000 international works mainly of the 20th and 21st century are collected here. Paintings by Neo Rauch, Joseph Beuys, Sigmar Polke, Salvador Dalí, Hans Arp, Max Klinger or Henri Matisse can be discovered, but also works by unknown artists and amateurs, which are uniquely put together by Freyer. Together with Achim Freyer, we could discover this extensive exhibition of paintings, graphics and sculptures and talk with him about his oeuvre.
24 - 26 October 2014 | International Opera Weekend by the Young Friends
From 24 to 26 October 2014, the Young Friends of the Staatsoper held the 9th International Opera Weekend in Berlin. Puccini, Wagner and Mozart – this year, three of the greatest opera composers of all time and three of the most admired operas ever were on the program of the Young friends and their visitors, who came to Berlin from Italy, Norway, France, the Netherlands and other countries. Thus, 50 young opera friends watched »Tosca« and »Tristan und Isolde« at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater as well as »Die Zauberflöte« at the Komische Oper together. Furthermore, a guided tour through the construction site of the opera house Unter den Linden and a reception at the Schiller Theater were waiting for them.
16 October 2014 | Welcome evening: Friends meet friends at »Tosca«
With a joint visit of the new production of »Tosca« with Daniel Barenboim at the conductor’s desk, we welcomed our new members in the association. At an exclusive reception during the intermission, they were able get to know other opera lovers and talk about the Staatsoper. Afterwards, we discover the Schiller Theater behind the scenes during a guided tour.
Thanks to the financial commitment of our members, the production of »Tosca« is supported by our association with 100.000,- €.
On 5 October 2014, artists of the Staatsoper filled the Dussmann KulturKaufhaus with music during the 8th Sunday shopping to the benefit of the Staatsoper. Once again, the Dussmann KulturKaufhaus donated all revenues of the day to our association to the benefit of the refurbishment of the opera house Unter den Linden. With the aid of this donation, our association will enable in a public-private-partnership the installation of a multilingual subtitling in the Staatsoper Unter den Linden.
Jonathan Winell (tenor) and Maximilian Krummen (baritone) of the Staatsoper’s international Opernstudio opened the musical part with songs and arias by Richard Strauss, Hugo Wolf and Gaetano Donizetti; they were accompanied on the piano by Andrei Diakov. Concertmeister Lothar Strauß of the Staatskapelle Berlin and Victoria Margasyuk of the Orchesterakademie played violin duos by Béla Bartók as well as together with pianist Günther Albers a wonderful double concerto for two violins by Johann Sebastian Bach. Afterwards, Günther Albers and solo flutist Claudia Stein of the Staatskapelle Berlin presented music for flute and piano by Francis Poulenc, Egon Kornauth and Charles Marie Widor. The great ensemble singers Carola Höhn (soprano) and Arttu Kataja (baritone) accomplished this musical afternoon with songs by Ludwig van Beethoven and Jean Sibelius as well as a duet from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s »Don Giovanni«. They were accompanied on the piano by Gary Gromis.
We cordially thank the Dussmann KulturKaufhaus for this extraordinary commitment as well as all the artists who made such a special event possible. We would also like to thank all visitors and shoppers.
26 September 2014 | Vernissage »Behind the mask« with portraits of Staatsoper’s artists
During performances like »Don Carlos«, »Die Zauberflöte«, »Il trovatore« and many other productions at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, photographer Paul Green has been shooting backstage portraits of the artists. The impressive portrait series »Behind the Mask« shows artists such as Marina Prudenskaya, René Pape, Anna Prohaska and Gyula Orendt. Now Paul Green for the first time presented a range of these works at the »Rainmaking Loft« in Berlin Mitte; the aim of it was to raise money for the Junge Staatsoper. Our members were invited to the opening of the exhibition as well as an exclusive guided tour where Paul Green presented us his works. They show singers and performers in close shots, after they have turned into the character on stage. Thus the second glance at the person behind the mask was very fascinating. At the vernissage we could afterwards enjoy a performance by the great mezzo-soprano Marina Prudenskaya.
21 September 2014 | Staatsoper for cinema pricing: »Candide« for everyone under 35
In the evening of the Staatsoper’s season opening festivity, about 300 young visitors under 35 could watch Leonard Bernstein’s opera »Candide« back on stage of the Schiller Theater. With the project »Staatsoper for cinema pricing«, our association gave them the wonderful chance to see this opera for just 8,- euros.
With a glass of wine at the invitation of the Südliche Weinstraße the participants opened the evening in the Glass Foyer of the Schiller Theater. Afterwards they enjoyed Berstein’s opalescent »Comic Operetta in Two Acts« after Voltaire’s philosophic-satiric novel »Candide«. A great ensemble of singers around Leonardo Capalbo as the eponymous hero, the charming and humorous staging by Vincent Boussard and opulent rococo costumes by designer Christian Lacroix ensured a wonderful evening.
02 - 05 July 2014 | Members’ trip to the concert of the Staatskapelle Berlin in Paris
Saint-Sulpice, Champs-Élysées, Montmartre, Opéra Garnier, the »savoir vivre à la française« as well as the fascinating Eiffel Tower: The summer in Paris is seductive. This is especially true when the Staatskapelle Berlin and Daniel Barenboim make a concert at the Salle Pleyel. Their summer tour gave us the perfect opportunity to travel to the Seine and spend days full of music in on this beautiful city.28 April 2014 | Presentation of the new Season with Artistic director Jürgen Flimm
On April 28th, Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm introduced the new season 2014/15 to the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper. In the upcoming season we can look forward to 9 premieres on the big stage, 21 operas from the repertory and about 80 concerts. Great singers such as Anna Netrebko, Plácido Domingo, Rolando Villazón, Waltraud Meier, Edita Gruberova, Peter Seiffert, René Pape, Thomas Hampson, Wolfgang Koch, Christian Gerhaher and many more will provide us with great musical events. After drinking a glass of wine at the invitation of the Südliche Weinstraße, we had the wonderful opportunity to visit the rehearsal of Achim Freyer’s sublime staging of de' Cavalieris »Rappresentatione di anima et di corpo«.
18 April 2014 | Guided tour: Construction Site of the Opera House Unter den Linden
During the FESTTAGE, we offered the possibility to visit the construction site of the Opera House Unter den Linden. We still have to have patience until the Staatsoper will return to »our« Staatsoper Unter den Linden – this summer, senate building director Regula Lüscher will pronounce the final date for the re-opening. But now we could get our own idea of the progresses that have been made. Our guides Jörg Freyer and Kay Keßner showed us the construction project and its history and gave us an idea in what a fantastic building the Staatsoper will return. In the Staatsoper’s former orchestra rehearsal hall we looked forward with anticipation to the extraordinary production of Salvatore Sciarrino’s chamber opera »Macbeth« which Jürgen Flimm will stage her in June.
15 April 2014 | Talk with Peter Seiffert
Peter Seiffert is one of the leading heldentenors of his generation and performed in every important opera house of the world. At the Staatsoper’s FESTTAGE in 2014, he thrilled everyone as »Tannhäuser«. In the extraordinary hotel Waldorf Astoria Berlin we met Peter Seiffert for a talk. With great passion and his humorous and winning character, he talked about his life as opera singer, the role of »Tannhäuser« and the production in the Schiller Theater. We are already looking forward to seeing him again and again on the Staatsoper’s stage.
14 April 2014 | Guided tour of the Schiller TheaterHave a glance behind the iron curtain, look into the wardrobes of the artists, get to know the history of the Schiller Theater – all of that was possible for our members and visitors of the FESTTAGE during a guided tour through the Schiller Theater. They learned a lot about what is necessary behind the scenes so that the curtain rises every evening got to know places that are usually invisible to visitors.
13 April 2014 | FESTTAGE-Reception after »Simon Boccanegra«
As second opera of this year’s FESTTAGE, Giuseppe Verdi’s »Simon Boccanegra« with Daniel Barenboim, a fantastic Staatskapelle and great singers thrilled the audience in the Schiller Theater. Afterwards, our members and visitors of the FESTTAGE met in the Glassy Foyer to drink to the FESTTAGE 2014. It was a great pleasure to welcome many of the artists of the performance at our reception: Maria Agresta, who had enchanted the audience as Maria Boccanegra, Dmitry Belosselskiy (Fiesco), Àngel Òdena (Paolo Albiani), Wilhelm Schwinghammer (Pietro), Jonathan Winell (Hauptmann der Bogenschützen), Evelin Novak (Dienerin Amelias) as well as Markus Bruggaier (horn), Matthias Glander (solo clarinetist), Susanne Schergaut (1st violin) and Hartmut Schuldt (solo bass clarinetist) let fade away the evening with us. We could exchange views about the evening and casually get into conversation with the musicians.› PHOTO GALLERY06 February 2014 | Welcome reception »Katja Kabanowa«At a reception behind the scenes of the Schiller Theater, we gave a welcome to the new members of our association. They met longtime members, socialized and talked about their shared love for opera. Afterwards, we visited the performance of »Katja Kabanowa« with Simon Rattle as conductor and staged by Andrea Breth. The evocative presentation and the thrilling music had enchanted both audience and press. During a guided tour after the performance we got great insights into the world behind the scenes. Thus, we got to know the history and details of the building and learnt a lot about the necessary procedures behind the scenes that enable an opera performance.
22 January 2014 | Exclusive guided tour of the Daimler Kunst SammlungThe arts collection Daimler Contemporary was founded in 1977. Today it includes about 1.800 works by German and international artists. At a guided tour through the exhibition rooms in Haus Huth our members got to know the wonderful exhibition »highways and byways. together again«, where Nic Hess stages American art out of the collection and shows a cross section from Josef Albers, the Los Angeles »Abstract Classicist« and the »Washington Color School«, Minimal Art and Radical Painting to latest ideas. Afterwards we could talk about the art we’d just seen during a reception.
19 - 21 January 2014 | Members‘ trip to Dresden
At our members’ trip to Dresden, we accompanied René Pape to the city of his birth. Many oeuvres by Richard Strauss were premièred at the Semperoper. Thus, the opera house celebrated the composer’s 150th birthday with a fascinating premiere of »Elektra«. Christian Thielemann as conductor and a fantastic cast with René Pape, Waltraud Meier and Anne Schwanewilms enchanted everyone. After the performance we went to the first night party and had dinner together. On the following day, we visited the cultural highlights of Dresden such as the Frauenkirche and the art gallery.
03 December 2013 | Photos of the concert for our members with Evelin Novak and Gyula OrendtOur members could celebrate a very special evening at this year’s concert for our members. At the invitation of Vattenfall GmbH, Gyula Orendt and Evelin Novak, both members of the Staatsoper’s ensemble, gave a wonderful concert in the former turbine hall of the heat and power station Moabit. 150 members and guests listened to arias and duets and donated in favor of the Junge Staatsoper.
29 November 2013 | Photos of the opening night dinner »Il trovatore«In celebration of the top-class opening night of Giuseppe Verdi’s »IL TROVATORE« on 29 November 2013, artistic director Jürgen Flimm and the Staatsoper’s Friends and Supporters have invited to an exclusive dinner. Together with Plácido Domingo, Anna Netrebko and Daniel Barenboim, the guests dined in a festive ambience after the performance.
The donations of the evening benefit the Junge Staatsoper.
28 November 2013 | Discussion with Mara KurotschkaTogether with Philipp Stölzl, Mara Kurotschka staged the highly coveted performances of » IL TROVATORE« with Anna Netrebko and Plácido Domingo at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater. One day before the premiere, we talked to the co-director about the evolution of this staging from the first ideas to the completed work. Where did they get the idea for the fantastic stage design from, which approaches did the stars make to their roles – these were just some of the questions that the 40 guests were interested in. Jens Schroth, the Staatsoper’s head dramaturg, moderated the talk and impressed the listeners with his comprehensive knowledge about Giuseppe Verdi’s oeuvre. We are happy that we have found the hotel Brandenburger Hof as a wonderful new cooperation partner and thus this talk could take place in a very classy ambience.
20 October 2013 | Sunday shopping at Dussmann KulturKaufhausOn October 20th, 2013, the Dussmann KulturKaufhaus hosted the 7th Sunday shopping to the benefit of the Staatsoper. All revenues of the day were donated to our association and will benefit the Junge Staatsoper. And shopping was even more fun on this special day as artists of the Staatsoper performed in the KulturKaufhaus and turned it into a concert hall.
As a start, a string quintet of the Staatskapelle – accompanied on the piano by Lora Dimitrova – presented the wonderful Sextet for strings and piano op. 33 (1906) by Felix von Weingartner. The Children’s choir and the Youth choir of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden under the direction of Vinzenz Weissenburger and Frank Flade enchanted everyone. Sónia Grané (soprano), Stephen Chambers (tenor) and Maximilian Krummen (baritone) of the Staatsoper‘s Opernstudio sang arias and duets by W. A. Mozart, accompanied on the piano by Adrian Heger. As a crowning final, the members of the Staatsoper’s ensemble Marina Prudenskaya (mezzo-soprano) and Stephan Rügamer (tenor) delighted with arias and songs by J. Brahms, S. Rachmaninow and G. Verdi. They were accompanied on the piano by Klaus Sallmann.
We cordially thank the KulturKaufhaus Dussmann for this extraordinary commitment. We also give great thanks to the artist, who made such a special event of this afternoon.
› PHOTO GALLERY
11-13 October 2013 | International Opera Weekend by the Young FriendsFrom 11 to 13 October 2013, the Young Friends of the Staatsoper held the 8th International Opera Weekend in Berlin. Young opera friends from all over Europe were invited to see three operas in Berlin’s three opera houses. The participants were thrilled by the variety of the performances: »Wozzeck« at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater, »Ball im Savoy« at the Komische Oper and »Nabucco« at the Deutsche Oper. Furthermore, a guided tour through the construction site of the opera house Unter den Linden, a reception in the Schiller Theater and a guided tour through Kreuzberg were on the program for the Young Friends and their visitors who came from Italy, Norway and France to Berlin.
07 October 2013 | Guided tour through the Collection Hoffmann
The private Collection Hoffmann is an extraordinary treasure of contemporary art by diverse artists such as Andy Warhol, Chiharu Shiota, Ernesto Neto, François Morellet or Frank Stella.
Erika Hoffmann opens her living and working areas situated on two floors of a former industrial building in order to let others have a share in this special collection. Thus, our members could experience in this private atmosphere a very personal approach to the masterpieces and get inspired by the richness of the contemporary art on display, made by artists of diverse origin and from different generations.
- 22 June 2013 | Reception at the première of »Hanjo«
After the premiere of Toshio Hosokawa‘s opera »Hanjo«, the members of the Friends and Sponsors were invited to an exclusive reception by the Staatsoper. The wings offered an exciting view to the scenery of the stage design. Together with the artists and artistic director Jürgen Flimm our members were able to let the season 2012/2013 fade away in this atmospheric setting. Jürgen Flimm said goodbye to everyone until the next season.20 June 2013 | Introduction »For the disconnected child«
On occasion of the special coproduction »For the disconnected child« by the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater with the Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz, the friends’ associations of the two houses met for a conjoint introduction with director Falk Richter. In the Schaubühne’s studio, he explained the concept and the music of his project. Afterwards, we visited the performance. »For the disconnected child« combines Falk Richter’s texts with New Music made my seven different composers; Tschaikowsky’s opera »Eugen Onegin« also plays an important role. Under the musical direction of Wolfram-Maria Märtig, singers of the Staatsoper (Borjana Mateewa, Gyula Orendt, Maraike Schröter) met the Icelandic singer/songwriter Helgi Hrafn Jónsson, actors of the Schaubühne, impressing dancers and musicians of the Staatskapelle Berlin.15 June 2013 | Charity dinner at Villa Jacobs
On 15 June 2013, our member of the board Marianne Ludes, Stefan Ludes and the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper invited to a summer evening in the garden of the Villa Jacobs at the Jungfernsee.
After the guests had arrived via BMW-shuttle, they were welcomed with a glass of champagne and a performance by a brass quintet of the Staatskapelle Berlin (Christian Batzdorf: trumpet, Felix Wilde: trumpet, Thomas Jordans: horn, Martin Reinhard: trombone, Elliott Dushman: tuba). Afterwards, the guests wandered through the magnificent park of the Villa and then, Marianne Ludes invited them to the very special highlight of the evening on the Villa’s terrace: a private concert with Anna Prohaska (soprano) and Gyula Orendt (baritone), both members of the Staatsoper’s ensemble. In the unique atmosphere at the Jungfernsee, the two of them enchanted all guests with their stunning performances of arias and duets from »Don Giovanni«, »Le nozze di Figaro«, »Die Zauberflöte«, »Die tote Stadt«, »Rusalka« and »Die lustige Witwe«.
Afterwards, a festive dinner with the artists and Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm took place in the Villa’s Lindenhain.
The donations that were raised during the event made possible the project »Staatsoper for cinema pricing« where young opera fans could by opera tickets for 8,- €.
We cordially thank Marianne and Stefan Ludes who made possible this wonderful evening. We are also indebted to the artists of the evening for their commitment, to BMW for their shuttle-service as well as to all guests for their coming and for their donations.
22 May 2013 | Welcome Evening for new Members: Friends meet Friends
Attending an opera conjointly is a wonderful event, and so we invited the new members of our association to a welcome evening and a following visit of the performance »Der fliegende Holländer«. During a reception in the Theodor Heuss room, the new members got to know each other, and our longtime supporters, who were also invited, had much to tell about our association. We were especially happy about a visit by the board of the Staatskapelle Berlin: Susanne Schergaut (1st violin), who just joined our association, looks forward to joint projects. Markus Bruggaier (horn) and Thomas Jordans (horn) also took the time to welcome our members before starting for the orchestra pit. The visually stunning performance of »Der fliegende Holländer« delighted us very much on the day of Richard Wagner’s 200th birthday.15 May 2013 | General Meeting 2013At this year’s General Meeting, the Friends and Sponsors were happy to welcome a special surprise guest: During a moving speech, Daniel Barenboim talked about his close affinity to Berlin and about the last 50 years, which he spent in this city, as well as the last 21 years, which he spent at the Staatsoper and with the Staatskapelle Berlin. He highly appreciated the public funding of the arts, yet there were many important which could only be achieved with the help of private support. Thus, Daniel Barenboim cordially thanked the members for everything that the Friends and Sponsors had done for the Staatsoper and will yet do.
For the first time, the General Meeting took place in the Werkstatt of the Schiller Theater.
Ulrich Maas, chairman of the association, was especially happy to welcome state secretary André Schmitz. Mr. Schmitz thanked everyone who remained steadfastly at the Staatsoper’s side during these difficult times, especially Mr. Barenboim for his loyalty to Berlin as well as our association for supporting the refurbishment.
Ulrich Maas reported on the newly founded board of trustees of the association, which will play an important role for the association. The enlargement of the personnel will advance the national and international charisma. The members of the board of trustees not only perform an extended advisory function, but also support the Staatsoper as ideas provider and multiplier. He is happy that so many prestigious personalities could be enthused with one of the most renowned opera houses of the world.
Furthermore, Mr. Andreas Fibig, CEO of Bayer Pharma AG, and Dr. Gary Smith, Executive Director of the American Academy in Berlin, were elected as members of the board of our association.
Artistic director Jürgen Flimm gave a summary of the highlights of the ongoing and the upcoming season and our treasurer Dr. Hans-Jürgen Meyer presented the annual accounts of 2012. Anna Schwanhäußer, executive director of the Friends and Sponsors, presented the association’s events and upcoming projects.
After the meeting, the members had a cozy get-together during a reception in the foyer of the Werkstatt.04 - 05 May 2013 | Spring at Neuhardenberg Castle: Concert with Elena BaschkirowaThe pianist Elena Baschkirowa is one of the most successful musicians of Russia. On May 4th, 2013, she played a piano-recital with works of Franz Liszt, Robert Schumann, Galina Ustwolskaja and Peter Tschaikowsky in the Schinkel-church in Neuhardenberg. On the occasion of this special concert, we offered our members a weekend at the wonderful Neuhardenberg Castle. After the participants had enjoyed the park of the Castle, they had dinner together and got in the mood for the following concert. The highlight was the exclusive Meet & Greet with Elena Baschkirowa, whom we met after the concert. She gave us an insight into the choice of her works and her artistry.25 April 2013 | Presentation of the new Season 2013/14
On the day of the press conference, the members of the Friends and Sponsors got to know the new season before everyone else did. The presentation took place in the Schiller Theater. Ronny Unganz, the Staatsoper’s managing director, Isabel Ostermann, Jürgen Flimm’s personal referent, as well as the dramaturges Jens Schroth and Detlef Giese presented the upcoming programme.
02 April 2013 | Informative Meeting about the refurbishment of the opera house Unter den Linden
With a very informative, competent and committed presentation, Regula Lüscher, construction director of the Berlin Senate, personally informed our members about the state of the refurbishment works at the Opera House Unter den Linden. Marianne Ludes, our board member and executive director of Ludes Generalplaner GmbH, moderated the subsequent talk with Regula Lüscher and Ronny Unganz, managing director of the Staatsoper. Thus, our understanding of the refurbishment, individual procedures and the further planning were advanced.For our members, it was a good opportunity to get informed at first hand and to ask questions. During a subsequent reception we had the opportunity to talk more. We thank the Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA for inviting us to their representation in Berlin.
24March - 04April 2013 | FESTTAGE 2013: Special programme of the Friends and Sponsors
This year‘s paschal FESTTAGE at the Staatsoper Berlin were formed by Richard Wagner‘s »Der Ring des Nibelungen« as well as the concerts with the Staatskapelle Berlin and with the choir and the orchestra of the Scala Milano under the direction of Maestro Daniel Barenboim. Accompanying these extraordinary musical events, we organized a special program.
With the aid of the donations within the scope of this special program and the membership fees of our members, the Friends and Sponsors in 2013 support the performances of Wagner at the Staatsoper with 150.000 €.
03 March 2013 | Reception durin première of »Götterdämmerung«
With the premiere of »Götterdämmerung« on March 3rd, 2013, the new staging of the Ring Cycle at the Staatsoper came to a closure. The Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper support the performances of Richard Wagner’s »Ring des Nibelungen« with the amount of 150.000 €. At the premiere on March 3rd, our members and many guests of honour of the Staatsoper came together at a reception during the break. Marianne Ludes, member of the board of our association, and Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm, thanked the members of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper for their commitment.
We thank the Südliche Weinstraße and Lindner for the support of our receptions.
15February 2013 | Guided tour through the exhibition »ImLicht von Amarna – 100 Jahre Fund der Nofretete«
About 100 years ago, the famous bust of Nefertiti (Nofretete) was found in the city of Tell el-Amarna. On the occasion of this anniversary, the Ägyptisches Museum and Papyrussammlung are displaying a great exhibition in the New Museum in Berlin around the bust and its rediscovery. Under very competent guidance our members had the chance to experience never shown findings as well as many international loans. Detailed information on the political and religious changes following the imposition of the monotheistic sun worship by PharaoEchnaton led to new insights regarding the Nofrete bust and the extraordinary art of the Amarna-period.
03January 2013 | »Karl Friedrich Schinkel«: Guided tour through the exhibition
Berlin’s opera lovers hold Karl Friedrich Schinkel(1781-1841) in high regard as creator of the impressing stage design for Mozart’s »Die Zauberflöte«. But Schinkel is rightly referred to as “Prussian universal genius”: He was an architect, city planner, artist and designer. In the exhibition of the Kupferstichkabinett of the Staatliche Museen Berlin, our members were able to see the manifold aspects of his creations. About 300 exhibits gave us an extraordinary insight into the life and work of one of the most important European architects at the beginning of modernity.
07December 2012 | 20th Anniversary of the Friends and Sponsors – Festive Performance of »La Bohème«
On December 6th 1992, on the eve of the 250th birthday of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden, a small circle of musicians, politicians and business persons came together to found the friends’ association of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden.
20 years later, on December 7th 2012, many members of the association, which nowadays counts over 1.400 Friends and Sponsors, celebrated this special anniversary at a festive performance of »La Bohème«. It was a wonderful and joyous celebration, where our members together looked back at the 20 past years. Unfortunately, our foundation chairman Hans-Dietrich Genscher wasn’t able to travel to Berlin because of the sudden snowfall at the airport.
After the guests had walked into the Schiller Theater on the red carpet, they were welcomed with sparkling wine and wine. Before the performance begun, Ulrich Maas, chairman of the association, thanked everyone for coming and for supporting the Staatsoper. Afterwards we saw the amazing production of »La Bohème« with conductor Andris Nelsons and with the fantastic singers KristineOpolais, Anna Samuil, Stephen Costello, Alfredo Daza, ArttuKataja, Jan Martiník, Michael Smallwood and Alcindoro Michael Kraus.
After the performance, our members celebrated together with guests of honour, artists and the Staatsoper’s staff at a great reception in the Gläsernes Foyer of the Schiller Theater. Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm once more welcomed all the guests and presented a very special „surprise guest“: Daniel Barenboim greeted our members via video. He himself could unfortunately not be present, as he opened the new season at the Scala Milano with »Lohengrin«.
As perfect highlight of the evening, our guests were able to get to see the singers of the »Bohème« once more very close: Anna Samuil and Michael Smallwood sang »Libiamo« from Verdi’s »La Traviata«, Stephen Costello sang Verdi’s »Quest’oquella« from the opera »Rigoletto« and Kristine Opolais enchanted the audience with »O miobabbinocaro« from Puccinis »Gianni Schicchi«. The exaltation of the listeners was rewarded by a fantastic encore byKristine Opolais and Stephen Costello with a duet of »La Bohème«. The singers were accompanied on the piano by pianist Wolfram-Maria Märtig, who afterwards provided a wonderful end of the evening by his solo play.
We cordially thank our sponsors, who were of vital importance for the success of the evening: Berliner Kindl, Gerresheim, Kofler&Kompanie, SüdlicheWeinstraße, Blumen- und Pflanzenservice Bernhard Utzschneider.
15November 2012 | Daniel Barenboim’s 70th Birthday: The Friends and Sponsors donate a scholarship for the Musikkindergarten
For his 70th birthday, the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper made Daniel Barenboim a very special present: They donated a 3-year-scholarship for one child to the Musikkindergarten Berlin e.V., which was brought into being by Mr. Barenboim. The chairman of our association, Ulrich Maas, handed him a symbolic cheque for the scholarship, about which Mr. Barenboim was very glad. Right before the handing over of the cheque, the children of the Musikkindergarten delighted Daniel Barenboim by singing for him.
07 November 2012 | Welcome evening for new Members: »Don Carlo«
At our yearly welcome evening we want to welcome all new members and offer them the opportunity to get to know other members as well as to learn particulars about our association and the Staatsoper. This year, we attended the spectecular performance of »Don Carlo« with René Pape as Philipp II together. During the break, we met for a reception in the Theodor Heuss room. Thus, new and long-time members could get to know each other and talk about their opera experiences.
21 October 2012 | Staatsoper Sunday at DussmannKulturKaufhaus
On October 21st, the DussmannKulturKaufhaus for the 6th time hosted a Shopping Sunday for the benefit of the refurbishment of the Staatsoper. For one afternoon, the KulturKaufhaus turned into a concert hall.
Knut Zimmermann, concertmaster of the second violins of the Staatskapelle Berlin, and Volker Sprenger, solo viola player at the Staatskapelle Berlin, enchanted with their interpretation of Mozart’s »Duo in G-Dur KV 423« and »Passacaglia – freinachHändel« by J. Halvorsen.
Christian Batzdorf, Felix Wilde, Rainer Auerbach and Dietrich Schmuhl played as a trumpet quartet.
The great soloists Katharina Kammerloher, Paul O’Neill and Jan Martiník elated the visitors with arias and songs by J. Strauß, G. Puccini, V. Blodek, A. Dvorák and R. Strauss. They were accompanied on the piano by Klaus Sallmann.
We cordially thank the artist, who made such a special event of this afternoon. We also especially thank the KulturKaufhausDussmann as well as all visitors and shoppers, thanks to whom the KulturKaufhausDussmann was able to donate the revenues of the day in the amount of 28.700 € to the Friends and Sponsors in favour of the Staatsoper.
12 October 2012 | Guided Tour: Construction Site Opera House Unter den Linden
Two years have passed since the Staatsoper moved to the Bismarckstraße, and in October 2012 the third season in the Schiller Theater started. The parent house Unter den Linden is meanwhile being renovated, refurbished and modernised. In September 2011, our members for the first time had the chance to get an idea of the advances of the refurbishment; now we offered once more the opportunity to return to the opera house Unter den Linden during a guided tour.
Though still some time will pass until the first sounds will be heard at the reopening, a grading room already shows how the finished interior of the will look like and makes one sense how the StaatsoperUnter den Linden will shine resplendent after the refurbishment has been completed. Our members are already looking forward to it.
13 September 2012 | Guided Tour through the Exhibition “Friederisiko” in the New Palace and Park Sanssouci
On the occasion of the 300th birthday of Friedrich II, called The Great, the ‘Foundation Prussian Castles and Gardens’ showed the exhibition “Friederisiko – Friedrich The Great” in the New Palais and Park Sanssouci, Potsdam. We got to see exhibits around the monarch and his days as well as unknown rooms in the grand castle planned by himself. Especially the hall where the walls were decorated by sea shells, crystals and marble was impressing.
31 August - 02 September 2012 | Member’s Trip to Salzburg
In summer 2012, we could, together with Discovery Fernreisen Berlin, offer our members a trip to the wonderful Salzburg festival. On August 31st, we visited the performance of G.F. Händel’s»GiulioCesare in Egitto« in the Haus für Mozart: Five hours of finest baroque opera with the stunning Cecilia Bartoli as Cleopatra.
On Saturday morning, we were able to enjoy Verdis »Messa da Requiem« in the GroßesFestspielhaus, with a quartet of soloists which right now is the pick of the bunch: AnjaHarteros, ElinaGaranca, Jonas Kaufmann and René Pape, with Daniel Barenboim as conductor and the choir and orchestra of the Scala Milano. Everyone with tickets could count himself lucky. The great expectations of the audience were more than met. Afterwards, we had a lunch in the restaurant M32 on the Mönchsberg with a dreamlike view over Salzburg and the Salzach.
On Sunday, our group took a guided tour to the most beautiful and remarkable spots of the city. In the afternoon a special highlight awaited us: During an exclusive guided tour, we could visit the stages of the Felsenreitschule, the Haus für Mozart and the GroßesFestpielhaus and took a look behind the scenes which usually is reserved for the artists.
We thank Discovery Fernreisen GmbH for the organisation and guidance in New York.
04 July 2012 | Benefit Dinner with Daniel Barenboim and Anne-Sophie Mutter
At the fantastic benefit concert in the Philharmonie on July 4th, the two extraordinary artists Anne-Sophie Mutter and Daniel Barenboim came together. Together with the Staatskapelle Berlin, they elated the audience with their interpretation of Johannes Brahms’ violin concert D major op. 77. During the break of the concert, the guests of our benefit dinner came to our reception in the southern foyer of the Philharmonie and already could talk about the concert seen in common. After that, they got enchanted by Brahms’ sinfonia no. 4 e minor op. 98, before they were taken to the Berlin Capital Club on Gendarmenmarkt by the exclusive BMW-shuttle-service.
There the guests of the dinner personally got to know Anne-Sophie Mutter and Daniel Barenboim. In the wonderful setting of the Berlin Capital Club, which provides a view over the Gendarmenmarkt, they could enjoy the excellent dinner together. After our chairman Ulrich Maas had welcomed the guests, Daniel Barenboim cordially thanked them for their support for the Staatsoper. Mr. Barenboim especially thanked Anne-Sophie Mutter for her great commitment. Our guests were glad about his speech and about the get-together with him, Anne-Sophie Mutter and artistic director Jürgen Flimm.
The donations of the evening will benefit the StaatsoperUnter den Linden.
We cordially thank Anne-Sophie Mutter, Daniel Barenboim and Jürgen Flimm for their attendance, which made the evening an unforgettable event for everyone.
We also thank our great supporters, without whom the successful accomplishment of the evening wouldn’t have been possible: BMW Berlin, Berlin Capital Club, Blumenkorb, SüdlicheWeinstraße and Robert Lindner GmbH & Co. KG.
24 June 2012 | Reception during the break of the Premiere »Don Giovanni«
Claus Guths staging of the opera »Don Giovanni« was one of the great highlights of this year’s Staatsoper season. At the premiere on June 24th, our members and many guests of honour of the Staatsoper came together at a reception during the break. With whine and canapés, they could discuss the fantastic performance of Maria Bengtsson, Christopher Maltman, Dorothea Röschmann, Erwin Schrott and the other singers, and in common look forward to the second part of the opera.
We thank the SüdlicheWeinstraße and Lindner for the ‘delicious’ support of our receptions.
14 June 2012 | Frankfurt/Main: Song Recital with Stephan Rügamer
Our annual benefit concert in cooperation with A.T. Kearney Frankfurt and the Opera Frankfurt this year took place in Opera Frankfurt. The guests were welcomed in the glassy foyer by our board member HolgerRöder, by the artistic director of the Opera Frankfurt Bernd Loebe, and by JulienSalemkour, conductor, Daniel Barenboim’s assistant, and pianist. The attendees experienced a harmonious and affecting song recital with Stephan Rügamer, member of the ensemble at the Staatsoper Berlin, and Christiane Karg, member of the Opera Frankfurt. They were accompanied on the piano by JulienSalemkour and BurkhardKehring, professor for song interpretation in Hamburg. The guests – members of our friends’ association and of the Oper Frankfurt as well as guests from Frankfurt’s VIPs and Frankfurt’s economy – were enthralled. For the encore, the two pianists played four-handed on the grand piano and the two singers sang a duet. At a flying buffet with a barbecue in the wooden foyer of the opera and on the adjacent terrace, the evening died away with animated talks and the personal conversation with the artists.
29 May 2012 | General Meeting –Ulrich Maas elected as new Chairman of the Association
This year’s General Meeting of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper took place on May 29th.
At the General Meeting, Ulrich Maas was elected as new chairman of the Friends and Sponsors of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden. He thereby follows Dr.Tessen von Heydebreck, who assumed the chairmanship in 2009 after Peter Dussmann’s resignation caused by illness. Ulrich Maas has been a member of the executive board of KPMG AG Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft since 1996. He is furthermore getting involved with politics, economy and science in Berlin. Amongst others, he is a member of the curatorship of the ‘Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wirtschafte.V.’ and chairman of the ‘Institut für den öffentlichenSektore.V.’ in Berlin. Since 2007, Ulrich Maas hasbeentreasurerofthe Freunde und Förderer der Staatsoper Unter den Linden.
Dr. Hans-Jürgen Meyer, CFO of the Dussmann Group and vice chairman of our association, now in addition assumes the office of treasurer.
Marianne Ludes, managing director at Stefan LudesArchitekten GmbH, has been elected as further board member by our members; she has been provisional holding this office since 2011.
02 + 03 May 2012 | Guided Tours: “Gerhard Richter: Panorama” in the NeueNationalgalerie
In honour of one of the most important contemporary artists, the NeueNationalgalerie showed the comprehensive exhibition „Gerhard Richter: Panorama“. At guided tours, our members could see the manifold sculptures and drawings, which have been chosen in close cooperation with the artist. They gave us an insight into Richter’s multifaceted artistic producing. Figurative illustrations meet abstract experiments with colours as well as landscapes and portraits like the old masters; Richter’s famous Vanitas-motives such as candle and cranium were shown next to expressive and complex abstractions.
12 April 2012 | Presentation of the New Season With Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm
On April 12th, 2012, Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm personally introduced the plans of the Staatsoper for the new season 2012/13 to the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper. After the presentation of the season, many guests used the opportunity for a cosy get-together. We would like to thank Wein&Vinos for the delicious wines.
30 March- 05 April 2012 | FESTTAGE Staatsoper: Special programme of the Friends and Sponsors
Once again this year, the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper accompanied the Staatsoper’s FESTTAGE with a colourful program of exhibitions and events. The participants were able to attend historical walks throughout Berlin, artistic exhibitions, visit the ARD broadcast studios and political buildings such as the Bundeskanzleramt and the Bundesrat.
22-28 March 2012 | Member’s Trip to New York
In March 2012, we were, together with Discovery Fernreisen Berlin, able to offer our members an exclusive opera and concert trip to New York City. The trip showed our members the vibrant and creative energy of New York. The travellers could experience Anna Netrebko and PiotrBeczala at the Metropolitan Opera in the long awaited premiere of Massenet’s “Manon”. Furthermore, a very special and colourful programme with unique cultural highlights awaited us: Amongst others, we got to see Christoph von Dohnányi with the New York Philharmonics in the Avery Fisher Hall, visited the MoMa with an exclusive and special VIP-opening and the Guggenheim museum. Detailed city tours with local guides gave us insights into the life of New York citizens. Our members were thrilled and are already looking forward to the next opera trip. We thank Discovery Fernreisen GmbH for the organisation and guidance in New York.
22 February 2012 | Critics talk: Kai Luehrs-Kaiser, rbb culture radio
We had a very special highlight in store for you on February 22nd. At a guided tour through the rbb’s studios, we got to know the historically and architecturally important house of broadcasting, where the rbb resides since 2003. We received many special insights and knowledge about the important history of the house.
Together with Dr.Matejka, the culture radio’s program director, we afterwards welcomed the famous music and theatre critic Kai Luehrs-Kaiser for an interview. He talked about many interesting details of his work as a music and musical theatre critic.
We very much like to thank the rbb for this wonderful event!
16 February 2012 | Exclusive Introduction to «Al Gran Sole caricod’Amore» for Friends and Sponsors (KraftwerkMitte| Trafo)
It is a tremendous effort to bring an opera on stage in an old powerhouse. Just for the Friends and Sponsors, the Staatsoper had prepared a special introduction, where we were able to get to know the extraordinary venue in advance. Technical director Hans Hoffmann showed us the powerhouse and the challenge of the technical equipment of this hall. In a background talk, Jürgen Flimm afterwards introduced us to the opera Al gran sole caricod’amore as one of the great works of modern musical theatre.
12 January 2012 | Guided tour of the Musical Instruments Museum
Due to last year’s success and many mambers’ demands, we once more offered a guided tour of the Musical instruments museum, which has been founded in 1888. Around 800 instruments from the last four centuries are exhibited in the museum. Our members could admire the fortepiano on which Carl Maria von Weber composed the Freischütz, took a look at the glass harmonica and marvelled at one of Europe´s biggest theatre and cinema organs. Many instruments were being played on site only for us.
11, 12, 15, 18 December 2011 | Farewell events at the opernpalaisUnter den Linden
The OpernpalaisUnter den Linden wanted to say goodbye to the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper and thus made special offers for its last events in December 2011. At the “Classic-Café – Christmas all over the world”, the “Murder Mistery Dinner”, an “Audience with Queen Luise” or an Opera dinner with Die Fledermaus for dinner, our members once more were able to enjoy the special atmosphere at the OpernpalaisUnter den Linden.
As a special highlight, the Opernpalais’ owner, Mr. Manfred Otte, personally guided our members through the Opernpalais.
26 November 2011 | Friends meet Neighbours in the Schiller Theater
On November 26th we invited friends and neighbours of the Schiller Theater to a get-together in the opera house, true to the motto “Opera connects neighbours and friends”.
After a cordial welcome by Andrea Kaiser, head of the Schiller Theater’s communication, and Katharina Daboul, executive director of the Friends and Sponsor, we got to see a wonderful performance by the Orchestra’s academia of the Staatskapelle Berlin. Stephanie Wilbert (flute), Elsa Claveria (violin), Josephine Range (viola) and Stella-Lucia Dahlhoff (violoncello) won over the audience with their enchanting performance of the flute quartet in d minor by Mozart. Afterwards, the guests enjoyed small culinary delights and conversations with members of the Friends and Sponsors, thus learning more about our work. Nearly 100 participants got an exclusive insight behind the Staatsoper’s scenes via guided tours through the Schiller Theater.
A brilliant completion of the afternoon was provided by baritone GyulaOrendt who, accompanied by Alexander Vitlin, who agitated and enthused all attendants with his awesome arias.
We cordially thank the musicians as well as the OpernpalaisUnter den Linden and LemonAid for the generous support. We also thank our volunteers for their dedication.
11 November 2011 | Welcome evening for new Members – Attendance at the Oper «Candide»
Welcome among opera friends! In order to welcome our new members in our association, we invited them and members who didn’t know the welcome evening yet to our welcome evening in the Schiller Theater on November 11th. There they had the opportunity to get to know other members and to learn interesting things about our association and the opera at a reception. Furthermore, we attended a performance of «Candide» together. It was a very nice evening to get to know each other!
25 October 2011 |Classic Consultation: Wind Instrument Players and Dentistry
Have you ever thought about how wind instrument players get the sounds out of their instruments? And how important their teeth are to the players?
After the success of our last classic consultation in the orthopedy, this time we took our members to the dentistry: The musicians of the Staatskapelle Axel Grüner (hornist) and Sylvia Schmückle-Wagner (bass clarinettist) as well as Dr. Felix Blankenstein (deputy in the Charité Centre for dentistry) shared their knowledge with us and talked about their experience on stage, potential problems, about the art and the fear of producing sounds. The event took place in the authentic ambience of an auditorium in the Charité.
23 October 2011 | Sunday Shopping At DussmannKulturKaufhaus in Favour of the Staatsoper
For the fifth time already, the KulturKaufhausDussmann hosted a Shopping Sunday for the benefit of the refurbishment of the Staatsoper. The visitors could enjoy a high-class musical programme while going shopping “for the Staatsoper”.
As a highlight of the day, there was the famous singer René Pape who also signed autographs after his performance. But there were also the other artists who contributed greatly to the success of the day with their artistic proficiency as well as their enthusiasm that invited the visitors to stay. The children’s choir of the Staatsoper presented works of Mahler and Mozart and the JungeStaatsoper performed scences from the opera “Cinderella” that is premiered on November 5th. The chamber choir “Appolini et Musis” entranced with Brazilian music from their new CD and a clarinet/oboe/bassoon wind trio from the Staatskapelle let Mozart and Schulhoff sound throughout the house. Finally there were NarineYeghiyan and AlinAnca, two singers of the Opernstudio, who performed two arias and an enchanting duet.
Thus, many thanks to all of the artists, to the KulturKaufhausDussmann, and to all the visitors and shoppers, thanks to whom the KulturKaufhausDussmann was able to donate the revenues of the day in the amount of €34.000 to the Friends and Sponsors in favour of the Staatsoper.
07 October 2011 | Literary City-Walks: The Cemeteries at the Hallesches Tor seen with Fontane
The old cemeteries at the Hallesches Tor are not as famous as other cemeteries of Berlin, but house many impressive graves of important historic characters. They were built in the 18th century outside the city walls of that time. During a literary city-walk we met Adalbert von Chamisso, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, RahelVarnhagen von Ense and many more.
02 October 2011 | Exclusive Performance for The Friends and Sponsors and Young Opera Lovers: Il Barbiere di Siviglia
At an exclusive anteprima-performance, Daniel Barenboim conducted for the first time Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia – 600 young opera lovers and our members were thrilled!
Following Daniel Barenboim's wish, the Friends and Sponsors made possible this special performance for the young audience, for which a generous contingent of tickets at the price of €7 could be offered to young opera fans under 35. Thus, they all could see Ruth Berghaus’ fascinating staging of 1968, the wonderful music and the fantastic young singers. The atmosphere in the audience was unparalleled. During the ardent final applause, AchimFreyer, who designed the terrific stage design in 1968, was brought on stage as an honoured guest by Daniel Barenboim.
After the performance, Daniel Barenboim, Jürgen Flimm and the artists came to a meet & greet at the foyer, where they welcomed the many young guests. Mrs.Ludes of the Friends and Sponsor's board also showed her joy over the successful performance. At the reception, we celebrated together the special event with whine and lemonade. We thank the Baikal Getränke GmbH for the "Wostok"-lemonades.
16 September 2011 | Guided tour of the construction site in the opera house Unter den Linden
Ever since the StaatsoperUnter den Linden has moved to the Schiller Theater and the construction works in the parent house have started, much has happened in the Lindenoper. We have arranged a unique opportunity for our member to see it with their own eyes, to visit the construction site and to be informed by the construction management about the progress of the refurbishment. We were very happy to be able to return to the Opera House Unter den Linden with our members for one afternoon together with general director Jürgen Flimm!
13 - 17 July 2011 | Members’ Trip to Israel
For the first time, Daniel Barenboim and Zubin Mehta, together with the Israel Philharmonics, performed Beethoven’s five piano concertos. The Friends and Sponsors and Discovery Fernreisen offered a concert trip to Israel with it. During the five day tour, the participants got to know Tel Aviv and the holy city of Jerusalem.
26 June 2011 | “Staatsoper for Everybody”: Concert on the Bebelplatz
For one day, the Staatsoper returned to its home Unter den Linden: On June 26th, 2011, we celebrated for the fifth time “Staatsoper for Everybody” on the Bebelplatz. Surrounded by the Opera House Unter den Linden and the other historic buildings of the place, Daniel Barenboim, pianist Yuja Wang and the Staatskapelle Berlin enchanted the audience with Beethoven’s piano concert no. 5 and his# famous symphony no. 5. After several minutes of enthusiastic applause by the 25.000 visitors, the Staatskappelle this time also played, as promised by Daniel Barenboim, an encore: With the overture of MozartsLe Nozze di Figaro the musicians finished the brilliant concert.
03 June 2011 | 10th Anniversary of Op|erleben
For 10 years now, the Staatsoper’s pedagogy department op|erleben has been doing excellent work in the promotion of musical theatre. On this special occasion, the JungeStaatsoper and the Friends and Sponsors, who paved the way for the formation of the department in 2001, invited to a anniversary celebration. The great festivity involved loud cheering for the pedagogue for musical theatre Rainer O. Brinkmann, who is considered to be a luminary and who has developed something unique in Germany with his department.
The wonderful programme of the evening started with the premiere of GewisseBisse, a scenic-musical collage about the search for liberty. This production by the youth club operatieferEingriff was impressing by its questions of life and the arts. Afterwards, the many guests were welcomed by opera director Ronald H. Adler, Marianne Ludes of our association and Rainer O. Brinkmann. The following reception was supported by the Friends and Sponsors and sponsored by 'Opernpalais' and 'Wein&Vinos'. Thereafter, we celebrated the 'Biss-Fest' together with the artists and staff in the courtyard of the Schiller Theater.
The Friends and Sponsors are proud to have supported the very successful department op|erleben. The employment of the pedagogue for musical theatre was funded by our association from 2001 to 2006. Afterwards, the position was written into the Staatsoper’s budget. Since then, there has always been a close connection between the department and our association and our members received many special invitations, for example for the children’s opera project 'Sternzeit F:A:S' including a poster-fotoshoot for members in 2009/10. In 2011, we sponsored the premiere of »Eisenhans!« by the JungeStaatsoper on the Werkstattbühne.
09 June 2011 | Frankfurt/Main: Song Recital with Hanno Müller-Brachmann
The Holzhausenschlösschen is located very romantically in the middle of a lake in the heart of Frankfurt. Once again this year, we have arranged a benefit concert in cooperation with A.T. Kearney Frankfurt and the Opera of Frankfurt; a cooperation which exists since 2008. After brass fanfares had given the starting signal for the concert, members of our association and of the Opera Frankfurt as well as our new opera director Ivan van Kalmthout and Bernd Loebe, general director of the Opera Frankfurt, could enjoy a fantastic song recital themed “spring poetry”. Hanno Müller-Brachmann’s last performance as member of the Staatsoper, before his farewell to Karlsruhe in autumn this year, was very touching. The celebrated and popular singer of the Staatsoper sang Schumann’s “Dichterliebe” and also moved his audience with his performance of Schumanns song “Freisinn”, after a poem by Goethe. TanjaAriane Baumgartner, member of the ensemble at the Opera Frankfurt, also elated all guests. For the encore, the two pianists Eric Schneider and Erik Nielsen played the grand piano four hands and the two singers sang a duet. A delicious flying buffet and a barbecue in front of the castle offered culinary delights after the concert. Finally, the warm early summer evening invited the many guests to stay and have a relaxed get-together.
18 May 2011 | General meeting
This year’s General Meeting of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper took place on May 18th. The association’s board, numerous members and general director Jürgen Flimm discussed current and future issues and questions concerning the association and the Staatsoper. After the meeting, which proceeded to everyone’s content, the attendees came together at a reception and cosy get together with whine and pretzels.
04 May 2011 | Guided Tour of the Exhibition “Kompass”
On a guided tour of the exhibition “Kompass” in the Martin Gropius Bau, our members had the opportunity to get to know drawings from the Museum of Modern Art New York. For the first time, over 250 works of 120 artists from the “Judith Rothschild Foundation Contemporary Drawings Collection” have been presented. The collection was brought together between 2003 and 2005 with the aim of giving a wide overview of the drawing as an artistic medium. The attendants of the tour were surprised and impressed by the variety of the works shown in the exhibition.
08 May 2011| “Friend’s Circuit” (Walking-Tour to the Castle KönigsWusterhausen)
On a warm and sunny day, our members went on a hiking tour together with other Friends Associations of Berlin’s culture. The gorgeous tour led the enthusiastic hikers from the station of KönigsWusterhausen via the Krummensee and the church of Schenkendorf to the castle KönigsWusterhausen. A guided tour of the castle and a request concert of the rbb awaited them there. The participants also enjoyed the raffle, in which our association gave away a sponsor-membership for 2011.
The friend’s Circuit took place with the active participation of many of Berlin’s Friends Associations, for example of the BerlinischeGalerie, the Jüdisches Museum, the Schaubühne am LehninerPlatz or the Deutsche Oper. We will be happy to participate once more in this successful collective event next year.
02 May 2011 | Premiere »Eisenhans«
The premiere of Ali N. Askins’ opera EISENHANS! was celebrated on May 2nd on the Werkstattbühne. The Friends and Sponsors are glad to support this production of the JungeStaatsoper and thus to further support the junior programme of the Staatsoper. EISENHANS! is the second production of a children’s opera at the Staatsoper in this season.
26 April 2011 | Presentation of the New Season with Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm
On April 26th, Artistic Director Jürgen Flimm personally introduced the plans of the Staatsoper for the new season 2011/12 to the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper. The felicitous musical framework was ensured by a duo of harp and English horn of the Orchesterakademie: Alma Klemm (Harp, member of the Orchesterakademie since November 2009) and Christina Gomez (English horn/oboe, member of the Orchesterakademie since September 2010) played Antonio Pasculli’s “Omaggio a Bellini”. After the presentation of the season, many guests used the opportunity for a cosy get-together. We would like to thank the OpernpalaisUnter den Linden as well as Wein&Vinos for the culinary highlights.
15 - 21 April 2011| Festtage 2011: Special programme of the Friends and Sponsors
Every year, the FESTTAGE of the Staatsoper are a special highlight of international musical life for every lover of opera and music. Once more, the Friends and Sponsors had mounted their own special programme which could be visited in parallel with the Easter-FESTTAGE of the Staatsoper. Members and interested persons had the opportunity to get to know special places of Berlin “behind the scenes”. Political institutions like the Bundeskanzleramt, the Bundespräsidialamt, the Reichstag, the Willy-Brandt-Haus and the Abgeordnetenhaus could be visited. The guided tour of the Russian embassy, which was in great demand, was also highly interesting. Furthermore, two guided city tours of Alt-Charlottenburg and from the DorotheenstädtischerFriedhof to the Marienstraße offered fascinating historical and cultural insights.
We hope that all participants, Berliner as well as not-Berliner, were able to discover new, unknown facets of the capital and would be glad to welcome you again next year!
16 April 2011 | Premiere Wozzeck: Reception of the Friends and Sponsors
We are very proud that the association of the Friends and Sponsors was able to support the production of Alban Berg’s opera Wozzeck, which was equally highly praised by the audience and the critics. On the occasion of the premiere on April 16th, we invited guests of honour of the Staatsoper and the Friends and Sponsors to a previous reception in the Schiller Theater. Our board member Thomas Greiner gave a speech which was delightfully received by the guests. With culinary delights of the SüdlicheWeinstraße and the Opernpalais all attendants could attune themselves for the upcoming premiere, where they could experience Daniel Barenboim at the conductor’s desk as well as the outstanding singers Roman Trekel and Nadja Michael.
15 March 2011| Benefit Dinner with Daniel Barenboim in Berlin
Following the impressive benefit concert in the Philharmonie with Daniel Barenboim and Simon Rattle, our members had the great opportunity to personally meet the two extraordinary artists and the singers of the evening at an exclusive dinner. In the delightful ambience of the library of the Grand Hyatt Berlin with a view of the Philharmonie, amusing conversations and culinary delights made this evening an unforgettable event.
After a champagne reception, the dinner guests were personally welcomed by Sir Simon. Maestro Barenboim thanked them for their generous commitment to the Staatsoper and had animated conversations with the guests during the dinner. Artistic director Jürgen Flimm also enriched the evening with his presence and contributed to the good and relaxed atmosphere. Our guests also especially enjoyed the get-together with the singers VioletaUrmana, Lioba Braun, Ian Storey, Hanno Müller-Brachmann and Reiner Goldberg.
The donations of the evening will benefit the refurbishment of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden.
07 March 2011 | Critics under-Fire: Dr. Stephan Mösch and Albrecht Thiemann (Die Opernwelt)
In a new round of talk of our ‘Critics under-fire’ event series, we could welcome Dr. Stephan Mösch and Albrecht Thiemann of the ‘Opernwelt’ as our dialog partners. The evening, which was very exciting for all opera lovers, took place in the impressive atmosphere of the Bristol Bar of the Kempinski Hotel Bristol Berlin.
In front of 30 guests, the two journalists talked to executive director Evelyn Fischer about their work for the monthly magazine “Opernwelt”. The guests learned that the “Opernwelt” has a certain economic independence, as it is edited by the Friedrich Berlin Verlagsgesellschaft. From the point of view of the journalists, this independence also allows them a higher objectivity in their reports and reviews. It was interesting to hear how much the “Opernwelt” tries to present as much of the opera from all over the world as possible. It is also very important to Mr.Mösch and Mr. Thiemann that productions at smaller houses are also observed.
Dr.Mösch answered the question about his personal view of the so-called director’s theatre impressively and comprehensible: “ The notion that there is just one reading, one truth in the performance of a stage entertainment, is an illusion.” The questions that the viewers of a play deal with, also change depending on the time they live in. The director’s theatre tries to account for all of this.
Inspired by the talk with the opera critics, the participants let the evening die away in the Bristol Bar with disputations, canapés and wine.
25 - 27 February 2011| International Opera Weekend for Young Opera friends
Three days – three operas, and much more! From February 25th to February 27th, 2011, the Young Friends of the Staatsoper, together with the youth club of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, have arranged the 5th International Opera Weekend for young opera friends from all over Europe. To be the home of three opera houses of international reputation is a unique privilege of the city of Berlin, and so a rich cultural weekend was waiting for us. As a start, Patrick Lange, musical director of the KomischeOper, delivered us interesting insights into his work as well as an introduction the opera Rigoletto, which we could enjoy in the evening. On February 26th it was followed by Otello in the Deutsche Oper. Before, we were provided with exclusive insights behind the stage into the work of the opera house and the stage design. Furthermore, Donald Runnicles, musical director of the Deutsche Oper and one of the leading opera conductors of our time, graced us. Of course we didn’t want to miss Berlin’s nightlife, so we started the last day of the weekend a bit tired, but excited about what it had in store for us. After a city tour by bus, we could attend a workshop for Die EntführungausdemSerail, organized by the JungeStaatsoper. It was a special kind of introduction themed “Experience yourself”; and so we all chose a role of the opera, of whose actions, emotions and thoughts we were given an understanding by playing ourselves. The performance of this opera in the Staatsoperim Schiller Theater was also the parting event. To experience opera together is such a great fun, and so we all hope to see each other again in one year at the latest for the next International Opera Weekend!
13 January 2011 | Guided tour of the musical instruments museum
As a start to our events in 2011, our members could attend a guided tour of the Musical Instruments Museum in which around 800 instruments from the last four centuries are on exhibition. The participants were fascinated by the many exceptional and unfamiliar instruments that were shown and even played to them by the museum guide. For example, they could admire the sound of the extraordinary Wurlitzer-Theaterorgel and of the fortepiano on which Carl Maria von Weber composed his Freischütz. The Musical Instruments Museum was founded in 1888 and is today part of the StaatlichesInstitut für MusikforschungPreußischerKulturbesitz.
13 December 2010 | “Profession: Musician - For risks and side effects …”
The kick-off event of our new series took place in the exclusive atmosphere of the Salon Humboldt of the Hilton Berlin Hotel. Friends and Sponsors´ member Dr. Fritz Fuhrmann, orthopaedist, explained - in company with Staatskapelle members Susanne Scheragut (violin) and Christiane Weise (flute) - advantages and disadvantages in playing posture and body burden of certain instrument groups. The entertaining talk that was presented by managing director Evelyn Fischer gave intimate insights into the everyday working life of orchestra musicians and unearthed funny anecdotes.
The evening concluded cosily over wine and snacks. We would like to thank the Hilton Berlin Hotel and its general manager Ronald van Weezel for its sponsoring and the two musicians for their contribution!
20 November 2010| Friends meet Neighbours in Schiller Theater
Under the motto “Remain faithful – become faithful” the Friends and Sponsors invited old and new neighbours of the Staatsoper into the Schiller Theater for an afternoon program on Saturday, November 20th. The artistic director of the Staatsoper Jürgen Flimm himself bid the guests welcome together with the managing director of the Friends and Sponsors, Evelyn Fischer. Subsequent the about 90 attendees had the opportunity to take part in guided tours of the Schiller Theater and thus to come to know the building better. Afterwards the guests got into conversation with each other and the present Friends and Sponsors and informed themselves about the association and its work over wine and niblets. Staatsoper singer Adriane Queiroz provided an adequate ending of the event with a brilliant performance.
We would like to thank our sponsors Bocca di Bacco and OpernpalaisUnter den Linden for their support!
08 November 2010 | Welcome evening for new Members “EntführungausdemSerail”
On November 8th our new members were offered the opportunity to come to know the association and the Schiller Theater better. For this purpose the association invited to a pre-reception in the Theodor-Heuss-room of the Schiller Theater. Here the new Friends and Sponsors had the chance to learn particulars about the association and the opera over a glass of wine, to make the acquaintance of other new members and to look behind the scenes. A mutual attendance of the “Die EntführungausdemSerail”-performance followed.
We extend a warm welcome to our new members!
07 November 2010 | Staatsoper Sunday in Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus
For the 4th time already our biggest sponsor, the Dussmann group, hosted an open Sunday in Dussmann das KulturKaufhauson November 7th to the benefit of the Staatsoper. A colourful musical program with artists of the Staatsoper attracted many visitors who hailed the various performances. Thus one could take pleasure in the instrumental performances of the Staatskapelle quintet, the horn trio of the Orchester des Wandels and the Duo DS as well as in the vocal performances of Anna Samuil, Katharina Kammerloher and RinnatMoriah and Rosen Krastev of the Opernstudio. Also the children´s choir of the Staatsoper performed some songs from its repertoire like in the last year.
Thanks to the numerous purchases Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus was able to donate the day´s profits in the amount of 52.000 euro to the Friends and Sponsors in the benefit of the Staatsoper.
31 October 2010| „Freunde schöner Götterfunken“ – members‘concert
After a break that lasted over three years the Friends and Sponsors once more invited to a Sunday members´ concert on October 31st. This time the event took place in a special ambience, the glass courtyard of the Jewish museum designed by Daniel Libeskind. This is due to a cooperationwiththe Jüdisches Museum Berlin andtheGesellschaft der Freunde und Förderer der Stiftung Jüdisches Museum Berlin e.V.. The guests, consisting of members of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper and members of the Gesellschaft der Freunde und Förderer der StiftungJüdisches Museum Berlin e.V., were delighted with the varied concert program that was presented by Staatsoper singer Katharina Kammerloher and the Tilia-Quartett of the Staatskapelle. At the subsequent reception all those present took the opportunity to swap impressions and to admire the fascinating architecture of the building over wine and finger food.
At this point we would like to thank our sponsors SüdlicheWeinstraße and Pace Paparazzi Catering&Event.
14 October 2010 | Guided Tour of the Bundespräsidialamt and Schloss Bellevue
As in the past the guided tours of the office building of the Bundespräsidialamt known as “The President´s Egg” and the Schloss Bellevue were once more in great demand. With good reason: The participants obtained an introduction to the history of the mansion and its use and had the opportunity to look around the most important rooms of the building, among others the office of the Bundespräsident itself, and to adapt the official reception of a foreign delegation.
The Bundespräsidialamt, which is situated south of the mansion and attracts attention on the exterior with its smooth, black-glossy façade, impressed everyone on the inside with an amazingly light and friendly atmosphere and with its simple interior as well as subtle architectural details. For all those who did not have the opportunity to take part in the event this time, we offer the next guided tour in spring.
07 October 2010 | ZwischenTöne – Backstage interview with Annette Dasch
Together with Staatsoper dramaturge Katharina Winkler Annette Dasch presented herself open and communicative at the ZwischenTöne in the Theodor-Heuss-room of the Schiller Theater. The attendant members of the Friends and Sponsors quickly got into a stimulating conversation with the singer during which the soprano, who just returned from the Bayreuth festival, explained among others things how a singer decides whether he/she has to cancel a performance or whether he/she can perform despite illness. Furthermore she talked about the work on the production “Metanoia” which she personally found very inspiring and interesting despite the challenge the preparation for modern music holds. That is why she wants to keep singing contemporary music in the future and would wish for the audience to have the opportunity to adopt modern productions more intensively. These days Annette Dasch prepares for her next part as Hanna Glawari in “Die lustigeWitwe” at the Geneva opera.
19 September 2010 | Boat trip to and Opening Party in the Schiller Theater
On Sunday afternoon, in bright and beautiful sunshine four ships with staff and guests of the Staatsoper on board put out in Berlin-Mitte towards Charlottenburg. Cheerful atmosphere on board and on side of the spectators on the river banks was created amongst others by the brass section of the Staatskapelle and by the Staatsoperchoir, its members showing up in costumes and makeup. A delegation of the Deutsche Oper with general director Kirsten Harms in the lead, welcomed the removal society at the Gotzkowskybridge. The partying continued at the big opening party in the Schiller Theater: All citizens of Berlin were invited to have a close look at the newly refurbished and brightly coloured building. As an opening the Staatskapelle under the direction of Daniel Barenboim played “Die kleineNachtmusik”, a colourful musical programme with many singers of the Staatsoper ensemble ensued. Since not all interested attendees could get hold of a seat in the audience, the doors had to stay open. The acoustic as well as the new design of the auditorium found favour with all who were lucky enough to be able to enter the building. At 8.30 pm. the programme in the foyer continued – with an autograph session, salon music and Mark Scheibe who gave a pretaste of his new series Wunderhorn.
16 September 2010 | Critics under-Fire: Manuel Brug (Die Welt)
The cooperation project with „DIE WELT“ led the members of the Friends and Sponsors into the impressive premises of the journalist club in the tower building of the Springer AG for the first time. Invitee of the evening was opera critic Manuel Brug who during the conversation with executive director of the Friends and Sponsors Evelyn Fischer gave the 80 attendees insights into his personal critics career and revealed himself as passionate opera fan – despite all critic(s). In the subsequent open discussion he answered the questions of the attendees. In this context he explained amongst other things that he always demands of himself to perceive and assess a premiere open-minded and unprejudiced. On demand he revealed furthermore which Berlin singers he believes to have a great future career and which current productions he would recommend. At the comfortable get-together in the bar of the journalist club afterwards the opportunity to deepen the discussions was taken.
10 - 12 June 2010 | Trip to Frankfurt/main: Recital Anna Prohaska
On the occasion of the charity recital in the benefit of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden on June 10th we cooperated with the management consultancy A.T. Kearney Frankfurt for the 3rd time already. In the gorgeous Holzhausenschlösschen which is situated right in the middle of a small lake 150 selected guests were welcomed. After the greeting of host HolgerRöder, vice president of A.T. Kearney, Ronald H. Adler, artistic director of the StaatsoperUnter den Linden, and Bernd Löwe, artistic director of the Frankfurt opera, addressed words of welcome and a charity appeal to the guests. Hereafter Anna Prohaska, Daphne awardee and member of the Staatsoper ensemble, and the baritone ArisArgiris from the Frankfurt opera provided an acclaimed recital.
The extraordinary programme of the soprano “Of fishermen and of mermaids” including works of Mahler, Schubert, Wolf and Dvorák took in the audience while the showpieces of the baritone very much pleased amongst others because of the popularity of the arias. Both singers were only allowed to leave the stage after various encores. The mild summer evening was brought to an end by a flying buffet on the pier of the castle.
22 + 23 June 2010 | Guided tour of Frida Kahlo exhibition
At the end of the season the association offered its members the opportunity to take one of three guided tours of the Martin-Gropius-Bau´s great retrospective of the oeuvre of famous Mexican artist Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) that has been taking place on the occasion of the centenary of the Mexican revolution. During the 60-minute-tours the participants could see a selection of the artist´s 150 exhibited paintings and drawings, amongst which were works that have never been shown before or have been believed to be missing, as well as a photo show from the possession of family and friends that gave insight into different phases of Frida Kahlo´s life.
17 May 2010 | Gala concert of Carl-Philipp-Emanuel-Bach-Gymnasium award winners
On the evening of May 17th the prize winner concert of the music contest 2010 of the Carl-Philipp-Emanuel-Bach-Gymnasium took place in the Apollo-Saal of the Staatsoper. Luckily the Friends and Sponsors were provided with 30 free tickets which they could pass on to their members.After a greeting by Catherine von Fürstenberg-Dussmann, representative of the sponsor Dussmann group and an introduction by Matthias Glander, solo clarinettist of the Staatskapelle that also provided the juror for the contest, the prize winners gave samples of their skills to the attendant parents, friends and supporters.
The young musicians who are only 12 to 19 years old and were praised by Mr.Glander as “tomorrow´s artists” enthralled the audience without exception, whether on piano, clarinet, violin, harp, viola or on the marimba. A wonderful entertaining evening!
06 April 2010| Presentation of the season 2010/11
This year´s season presentation was most eagerly awaited because it would not only cover the first of three seasons in the new building of the Staatsoper, the Schiller Theater, but also the first one of the new artistic director Jürgen Flimm. Accordingly many members of the Friends and Sponsors came to the Apollo-Saal of the Staatsoper on the evening of April 6th, completed by numerous Staatsoper subscribers. The future artistic director Flimm himself presented the new season 2010/11 and the corresponding preview book. As of autumn not only the venue will be a new one, also the concept of the new direction is clearly noticeable. In addition to 8 premieres and one world premiere new event series are to be developed, among others the “Infektionen” that devote themselves especially to contemporary music.
Subsequent to the official part of the presentation many of the attendants took the opportunity for a cosy get-together. At this point we would like to give thanks to SüdlicheWeinstraße for the sponsoring of the drinks and to the quartet of the orchestra academy for the successful musical frame.
26 March - 01 April 2010 | Special programme FESTTAGE 2010
Like in the past years the Friends and Sponsors again mounted their own special programme on the occasion of the Easter Festtage 2010 at the Staatsoper. Members and interested parties had the opportunity to get to know a multifaceted Berlin “behind the scenes”. Institutions of the federal politics like the Bundeskanzleramt, the Reichstag and the Marie-Elisabeth-Lüders-Haus as well as institutions of the Berlin regional politics like the Abgeordnetenhaus and the Rote Rathaus were to be visited. The guided tour of the Saudi Arabian embassy which was in great demand unfortunately had to be cancelled at short notice but could be replaced by a similar event in the also most interesting Nordic embassies. Furthermore two guided city tours of the neighborhoodsFriedenau and Alt-Berlin took place and offered fascinating historical and architectural insight.
We hope that all participants, Berliner or not Berliner, discovered new, unknown facets of the capital and would be delighted if we could welcome you again next year!
28 April 2010 | General meeting
The ordinary general meeting of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper took place on the evening of April 28th in the premises of the Deutsche Bank Unter den Linden.
Following the greeting of the chairman the applications in writing from the circle of members were presented and their admission to the agenda was put to the vote. Afterwards the reports of the chairman, the manager and the treasurer took place. The latter especially responded to the association´s current financial situation and the development of the number of members. Prof.Dr.Flimm, designated intendant of the Staatsoper, then gave a short overview of the coming season which was followed by the report of the accountants and the discharge of the board of management. The most important agenda item was the vote on the change of the association´s constitution in two paragraphs which was successful. A short debate finally brought an end to the general meeting. Subsequently the present members gathered for a reception over wine and pretzels.
10 April 2010 | Long Night of Operas and Theatres
The “Long night of operas and theatres” that took place for the first time last year went into its second round on April 6th 2010. 68 Berlin stages presented themselves with a short program of current productions, among them the Staatsoper which opened both its “old” house Unter den Linden and the future venue “Schiller Theater” for the audience. A genre- and time-crossing program which combined instrumental and opera music with discussions ensured a great crush and lively interest.
22 March 2010 | Welcome evening for new members: attendance of the opera “Carmen”
On March 22nd our new members had the opportunity to get to know each other and to learn particulars about the association´s work and the opera within the scope of an opera performance. For this purpose a reception took place in the intermission of an outstanding and sold out performance of Bizet´s “Carmen” in the otherwise not accessible Meyerbeer salon. In a cozyatmosphere and over a glass of champagne the participants got into conversation with each other and thus got a first insight into the association´s life. Our thanks to Gerresheim GmbH for the sponsoring of the drinks!
07 March 2010| Concert Daniel Barenboim: cooperation with concert agency Hans Adler
For Daniel Barenboim´s piano recital on March 7th in the Berlin Philharmonie, the association was provided with a special ticket contingent at a reduced special price by the concert agency Hans Adler. Therefore 30 of our members could witness the musical director and his impressive Chopin programme. At this point cordial thanks again to the concert agency Hans Adler for that!
16 + 17 February 2010| Guided Tour of the Art bunker
As reaction to the great demand in the last year we once more offered our members the opportunity to take part in guided tours of the bunker of the art collector Christian Boros on February 16th and 17th. The latter had rebuild the Berlin Reichsbahn-Bunker as his private museum, whereby he created a unique and fascinating exhibition location for contemporary art. The participants of the tour could observe how impressively the history of the bunker is reflected in futuristic light installations, concrete sculptures that break through rooms and games with place, time and colour. Oeuvres of well-known artists like works of Anselm Reyle or OlafurElasson could be seen, the latter of which already took on the stage design of Hans Werner Henze´s Phaedra at the Staatsoper.
25 - 28 February 2010 | Journey to Dresden – concert with Daniel Barenboim
On the occasion of the festivities “25 years rebuilding Semperoper” the Friends and Sponsors - in cooperation with the travel agency Discovery - offered their members the opportunity to follow Daniel Barenboim to Dresden where the musical director of the Staatsoper gave a special concert on February 25th. The journey´s participants enjoyed best weather and a wonderful hotel right beside the Frauenkirche. On the concert evening Daniel Barenboim delighted the Dresden audience in the Semperoper so much with his Chopin program that he had to do six encores.
Those of the members who made use of the offer of an extension of the stay until February 28th, could enjoy an outstanding “Walküre” in the production of Willy Decker. Beside the artistic events in the proper sense the travel group also had the opportunity to go on a guided tour of the Semperoper as well as admire the breathtaking treasures of August the Strong in the GrünesGewölbe.
04 - 07 February 2010 | Association´s journey Paris
On the occasion of the tour of maestro Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle, our annual members´ journey of the season 2009/2010 lead us to Paris from February 4th to 7th 2010. On two of the evenings the 28-man tour group enjoyed Schönberg´s orchestra works and Beethoven´s piano concerts in the Salle Pleyel, another evening was dedicated to the affecting opera visit of “Werther” with Jonas Kaufmann and Sophie Koch in the leading parts. An intoxicating experience!
In the daytime the members took part in exclusive guided tours of both the Parisian opera houses „PalaisGarnier“ and „Opéra Bastille“ which brought along important realisations about alikenesses and differences of the opera houses in comparison with the Staatsoper. Especially the enormous dimensions of the stage and the backstage of the Opéra Bastille caused great astonishment.
A further highlight was the talk with Philippe Jordan, the former assistant of Daniel Barenboim at the Staatsoper and the present musical director of the Parisian operas. In an one-hour conversation Mister Jordan told us about his new, versatile work, the customs of French orchestra culture and last but not least about the influences of the director´s theatre on the work of the conductor.
Apart from the „official events“ and numerous museum visits the tour group also had the possibility to explore the French capital extensively on foot at early spring temperatures. All participants were very enthusiastic about the journey.
As soon as the members´ journey for the season 2010/2011 is fixed, we will inform you about it at the news on our website.
26 January 2010 | Critics under-fire: FrederikHanssenand Ulrich Amling (Tagesspiegel)
With the event on January 26th in the premises of the Deutsche Bank Unter den Linden the Friends and Sponsors started their new series “Critics under-fire”. The opening event hosted the Tagesspiegel editors Frederick Hanssen and Ulrich Amling. After a short introduction of both journalists by the executive director of the Friends and Sponsors Evelyn Fischer, the guests provided information about their particular, quite differing professional passes of becoming a music critic. Furthermore they told us about the everyday working methods of a critic and about the “eternal fight” for space for one´s own article. A big conversational topic, on which the audience entered the discussion, was the question which role the personal opinion of the critic in a review should play, as it seems as if the majority of the readers rather expect an accurate description of the opera or piece of music than an individual assessment given by the author. Further questions from the audience amongst other things applied to overly abstract phrasing, opposed reviews of different newspapers on one and the same performance, the personal bias of the critics as well as the ideal time to read a review.
After the end of the event the participants animatedly continued discussing about the topics of the evening while enjoying wine and pretzels. Following the fully successful opening event will be a second “Critics under-fire” round in autumn this year.
12 January 2010| Guided tour of the New Museum II
Because of the great demand in December last year, in January we once more offered our members the opportunity to participate in a 90minute guided tour of the different collections of the reopened New Museum and to learn interesting details about the architecture of the museum itself. Bomb attacks in the Second World War destroyed the museum that was build in 1859 based on plans of Friedrich August Stüler and restored elaborately from 2003 to 2009 under the direction of star architect David Chipperfield. Now the collections Egyptian museum and papyrus collection and the museum of pre- and ancient history with objects of the antic collection are united here under one umbrella.
10 December 2009 | Guided Tour of the New Museum
On December 10th we offered our members the opportunity to get to know the newly inaugurated New Museum on the Museumsinsel during a 90 minute guided tour. The Museum has only been reopened in autumn this year. The guided tour not only contained the collections of the Egyptian museum and papyrus collection, the museum of pre- and ancient history and the antic collection but also gave information about the architecture of the building. Bomb attacks in the Second World War destroyed the museum that was build in 1859 based on plans of Friedrich August Stüler and restored elaborately from 2003 to 2009 under the direction of star architect David Chipperfield.
The run on the guided tour was so big that all places were taken immediately. For all who unfortunately could not participate we organised two additional tours in January 2010. You can find them in the “news” category.
07 December 2009 | Cinema live broadcast from the Scala
In cooperation with Arte the Friends and Sponsors invited to a live broadcast of George Bizet´s Carmen from the Scala Milano into the CineStar Original in the Sonycenter on December 7th 2009. The production of Emma Dante was at the same time the festive inaugural performance of the new “stagione” at the Milan opera house. Daniel Barenboim, the musical director of the Staatsoper conducted the orchestra of the Scala. Jonas Kaufmann, the celebrated Des Grieux from the Staatsoper´s Manon Lescaut , sang Don José alongside Erwin Schrott as Escamillo and the young Georgian Anita Rachvelishvili in the title role.
13 November 2009 | Topping out ceremony
On November 13th the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper had the unique opportunity to explore the “new” domicile of the Staatsoper from the season 2010/2011 on – the Schiller theatre – together with the employees and the artists of the Staatsoper. The head dramaturg of the Staatsoper Francis Hüsers informed about the history of the new venue in a lecture. The future artistic director of the opera Jürgen Flimm too was on-site in person and took plenty of time to answer the questions of the members who appeared in great number. The event was furthermore accompanied with a musical programme of the Staatskapelle.
24 November 2009 | Guided Tour of the decoration Workshop
On November 24th our members had the opportunity to watch the hidden work of the about 300 employees of the costume and decoration workshops and the stage service. These “Invisibles” who carry out important preparatory work so that a staging can be performed at all, often remain unnoticed but contribute fundamentals to the art of opera. The tour´s participants could among others visit the metalworking shop, the cabinetmaker´s shop, the soft goods´ department, the paint shop and the sculpture workshop.
04 November 2009 | Charity concert and dinner
This year´s charity event of the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper took place on November 4th. The evening´s guests of honour were Plácido Domingo and Daniel Barenboim. During a pre-reception in the south foyer of the Philharmonie the guests could get in the right mood for the evening whilst drinking champagne and eating nibbles. The following concert with Daniel Barenboim as conductor of the Staatkapelle and the performance of Plácido Domingo as well as Michaela Schuster and KwangchulYoun was the first highlight. The artists thrilled with a Wagner programme consisting of „Vorspiel und Liebestod“ fromTristan und Isolde and the first act of the Walküre. Subsequently the dinner guests were chauffeured to the Grand Hotel Hyatt with limousines sponsored by BMW Berlin where they were received with a glass of champagne. After the arrival of the artists the four-course dinner began. It was shortly interrupted by a jubilantly received surprise appearance of the Kammerchor of the Staatsoper. The evening´s excited atmosphere came about not least because of the willingness of the artists to take their time for talks with the individual guests. This made the evening an unforgettable event. We would like to thank all guests for their good spirits and the numerous donations! We also give thanks to the solo artists, the Kammerchor, the Staatskapelle and our sponsors - BMW Berlin, Fürst Metternich, Lindner and Blumenkorb – for their commitment and their generous support!
18 October 2009 | Open Sunday in the KulturKaufhausDussmann
This year as well the KulturKaufhausDussmann arranged an open Sunday to the benefit of the Staatsoper that took place on October 18th 2009. In addition to the possibility to rummage in the extensive assortment of the KulturKaufhaus, visitors had been able to enjoy a musical programme throughout the whole day that was performed by artists of the Staatsoper ensemble. By buying a book, a CD or a DVD the visitors did support the work of the Friends and Sponsors as the day´s profit of 45.000 Euro benefits the refurbishment of the Staatsoper.
17 October2009 | Lindenball
As in the previous year the exquisite and traditional Lindenball took place as a cooperation event of the German History Museum, the hotel Adlon and the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper. Once more the hotel Adlon formed the festive frame of the event on Saturday, October 17th, 2009. A gala dinner with subsequent dance until the morning awaited these invited guests of the three organisers. The musical frame of the festivity was arranged by the Staatsoper choir whose performance was very popular.
16 October 2009 | Press conference with Plácido Domingo
In cooperation with the press department of the Staatsoper the Friends and Sponsors provided their donors, patrons and legal entities with 10 places for the non-public press conference with Plácido Domingo on October 16 which was also attended by Daniel Barenboim, AnjaHarteros and Federico Tiezi. The event was highly informative and it was a great opportunity for all attendees to see the stars of “Simon Boccangera”.
28 September 2009 | Welcome Evening
On September 28th our new members had the opportunity to get to know the association and other new members and to listen to background reports concerning the association´s work and the opera in the course of a welcome evening. For this purpose the new members met for a little reception in the Meyerbeer salon during the break of the performance of Rossini´s IlBarbiere di Siviglia. Following a short greeting of executive director Evelyn Fischer was a stirring round of talks with champagne and appetizers.
We cordially welcome all new members, those as well who could not participate in the welcome evening!
19 September 2009| ZwischenTöne – Backstage interview with Anna Prohaska
After a great performance of EntführungausdemSerail on September 19th, the Friends and Sponsors had the opportunity to get to know the young soprano Anna Prohaska more closly over a glass of wine.
The only 26year old very talented singer turned out to be a great and lively dialogue partner who answered the numerous questions of the associations´ members detailed and revealed many interesting details, private interests and likes and dislikes on- and backstage. She explained how she prepares for an opera evening and what she plans and hopes for the future. Coming from a musician family she was onstage at the KomischeOper Berlin at 17 already and has worked with numerous reputable directors such as Michael Thalheimer, Harry Kupfer, the duo Jossi Wieler & Sergio Morabito, the designated artistic director of the Staatsoper Jürgen Flimm and many others since then and was thus able to tell quite a lot about their characteristics and special staging wishes. The Production´s dramatic adviser Katharina Winkler who conducted the conversation, as well had exciting insider information to add, especially about the production EntführungausdemSerail. At this point we would like to thank both of them very much for their provided time and patience and for making this inspiring conversation possible and we wish Anna Prohaska all the best for her future career!
16 - 17 September 2009 | „Bilderträume“ in the New National Gallery
On September 16th and 17th we offered our members guided tours of the unique exhibition “Bilderträume” in the New National Gallery. The visitors could see the private collection of the couple Ulla and Heinrich Pietzsch, consisting of over 180 works, its focus being the fascinating art of the surrealism. While looking at the impressive paintings of famous artists like Dalí, Miró, Magritte, Frida Kahlo and Max Ernst the participants immerged into a world of dreams, unconscious and mystery. Within the scope of the tour the participants got interesting background information about the artists, their most important works and the history of the collection. Thus the artistic evolution of the abstract expressionism as well as the connection between surrealism and presence by contemporary representatives like Neo Rauch was made comprehensible.
29 - 30 August 2009 | Staatsoper for Everyone
On the weekend of 29th and 30th August 2009 the traditional season´s opening under the motto “Staatsoper for everyone” took place on the Bebelplatz. It was the prelude to the last season in the Staatsoper building before the move to the Schiller Theater. On Saturday Wagner´s Tristan und Isolde was broadcasted live from the stage of the sold out opera house to the Bebelplatz. 18.000 opera interested people took the chance to enjoy the opus for free. On Sunday even twice as much music lovers gathered to listen to Maestro Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin.
The Friends and Sponsors too were present at the event to hand out information material and to promote new members. Furthermore a membership in the Association of the Friends and Sponsors was raffled within the scope of the lottery “Do you want to be friends?”. We cordially congratulate the lucky winner Pamela Pursche!
The next event on the Bebelplatz within the frame of “Staatsoper for everyone” will take place as a season´s conclusion on 5th and 6th June 2010.
18 - 19 June 2009 | Charity concert in Frankfurt/Main
In cooperation with the management consultancy A.T. Kearney the Friends and Sponsors invited to a charity concert for the benefit of the Staatsoper restoration on June 18th 2009 in the Städel museum Frankfurt am Main. Among guests of the Friends and Sponsors and A.T. Kearney interested parties from all over Germany followed the invitation.
For a start the guests were offered a guided tour of the Städel museum itself, followed by a little reception. Prior to the concert that took place in the museum´s “Metzler hall” HolgerRöder, vice president of A.T. Kearney, and Francis Hüsers, head dramaturg of the Staatsoper, informed about the current state of the opera house and the need for donations for the still incompletely financed restoration. The evening´s musical programme, consisting of selected Wagner, Mahler and Schönberg songs, was performed by the popular mezzo soprano Katharina Kammerloher, member of the Staatsoper ensemble, together with her accompanist Prof.BurkhardKehring on the piano. Following the concert was a four-course flying buffet in the museum garden. With the weather being comfortably warm that encouraged relaxed conversation within the group of visitors. Visibly taken with the musical performance and the whole scope of the event the guests responded to the organizers´ appeal for funds. The enjoyable atmosphere added to the fact that a great number of the attendees held conversations far into the night to exchange their impressions.
14May 2009 | Documentary Film „Nach der Musik“ with Otmar Suitner – Gala Performance
On May 14th 2009 the award-winning documentary film “Nach der Musik” about OtmarSuitner, the longtime musical director of the Staatsoper, started in Berlin movie theatres. On this occasion a gala performance took place in the afternoon of May 17th in the movie theatre Babylon-Mitte, followed by a reception in the presence of OtmarSuitner and the director – his son Igor Heitzmann. Members of the Friends Association were invited and came in great number. Also the general interest in the documentation was very wide and the cinema hall was filled to capacity.
The movie captivated through its compelling and at the same time careful narrative style and is of great interest to admirer of classical music as well as Staatsoper fans because it consecrates itself very extensively to Suitners 26 year long activity at the Staatsoper. Furthermore it offers the rare opportunity to gain a very personal insight into the conductor´s life.
The reception after the performance even provided the opportunity for the throughout enthusiastic audience to get into conversation with the meanwhile 87 year old Suitner and the director Igor Heintzmann.
24 April 2009 | Presentation of the new season
As every year, the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper had the exclusive opportunity to get to know the programme of the new season 2009/2010 before everyone else. Therefore on April 24th 2009, the day of the official press conference, a presentation of the new programme took place on the rehearsal stage I of the Intendanz building by the temporary artistic director Ronald Adler and the head dramaturg Francis Hüsers specifically for the members of the Friends and Sponsors. Both of them gave detailed information about the planned premieres and new productions as well as the new season´s directors and artists and answered the additional questions concerning individual productions and artists.
24 March 2009 | General Meeting
This year´s general meeting took place on March 24th 2009 in the orchestra rehearsal room of the Intendanz building. The event was mainly about the election and re-election of the management board member and the accountants.
Because of Peter Dussmann´s resignation the position of chairman of the board became vacant. Like expected in the run-up, Dr.Tessen von Heydebreck – until now deputy chairman of the board – was elected into this position. Ulrich Maas, longtime treasurer was confirmed in office. Newly-elected by the 97 present members were Dr. Hans-Jürgen Meyer, board member of Vattenfall Europe AG, who at the same time succeeds Dr.Tessen von Heydebreck as deputy chairman of the board and Thomas Greiner, chairman of the Dussmann group. Aside from the management board which has been elected for the next three years, the longtime accountants too were anew confirmed in their office for two years.
After the ballots treasurer Ulrich Maas and the newly elected chairman of the board Dr.Tessen von Heydebreck thanked for the shown trust and affirmed their intention to continue to pursue the interests of the association in the future with full commitment.
The request of a member to appoint Peter Dussmann honorary member of the association as a tribute to his matchless personal and financial commitment was decided unanimously. The members showed their appreciation for the work of the management board and the association´s office of the last two years by a long applause. Ronald H. Adler – temporary artistic director of the Staatsoper – also thanked the association and all its members for their support and commitment.
06 March 2009 | Guided Tour of the Costume department
On March 6th 2009 we offered our members the opportunity to look behind the scenes of the costume department. Within the guided tour the participants could get an extensive picture of the costume department and its responsibilities and got to see numerous costumes of the current productions. Furthermore they learned which methods and effects the costume designers use for certain requirements and gained insight into the importance and the required accurateness of this often invisible work.
19 February 2009 | ZwischenTöne – Backstage interviews on the new production Faust
On the occasion of the new production of Gounod’s Faust on February 19th 2009, the Friends and Sponsors of the Staatsoper invited to their event series ZwischenTöne– backstage interviews. Director KarstenWiegand, conductor Alain Altinoglu and dramatic advisor Jens Schroth could be won over as interviewees. They explained the difficulty and fascination of the French opera of the 19th century and the contemporary aesthetics of theatre productions to the audience and answered the detailed questions of the attendees concerning the current production. In the process many a incomprehension and misunderstanding could be clarified and lots of the participants felt like attending another performance of Faust with their newly gained knowledge. This opportunity was provided right after the event and was used by a part of attendees.
2008 | Member Survey
The evaluation of the member survey of the Friends and Sponsors that has been carried out at the end of 2008 mainly reflects the high satisfaction of the members with the offered services. 94% of the interviewees feel well cared for by the association´s office and over 80% are sympathetic to or even highly pleased with the events that have been offered so far. A special compliment to the work of the association´s office is the fact that 97% of the interviewees would recommend the Association to friends.
The most important motivation to join the Association of the Friends and Sponsors is the support of the Staatsoper and its artistic operations. The comfortable ticket service was named as the second most important reason, of course in connection with the Friends and Sponsors´ special ticket contingent. Furthermore, the participants of the survey especially appreciated the regular receipt of information about the Staatsoper and the association as well as the wide range of offered events.
However the survey also shows that the members´ information about the services and advantages of the individual membership degrees is insufficient. In this context 20% of the interviewees declared they did not know the advantages of their own membership degree sufficiently. The association´s office will consider this point and try to give more detailed and more extensive information. We would like to thank the participants of the survey for the further given suggestions! We will try to implement them as far as possible.
We are glad about the altogether positive feedback and the active participation in the survey and would like to thank all participants who took the time to inform us of their opinion, suggestions and criticism!
16 December 2008 | Guided tour through the Christmas Market at the Opernpalais
A guided tour through of the wonderful Christmas market at the Opernpalais in Berlin was a special offer for our members some before Christmas.
As an opener for the Christmas market a hot Glühwein and a warm advocaat with cream was served. Thereafter we were lead through the wonderful world of the Christmas market. Finest filled chocolate were tasted, the work of a chestnut-seller was presented and candyfloss was spooled. Later on we enjoyed a turn in a historical big wheel from 1927 and the play of a hand organ. Finally the OpernpalaisUnter den Linden opened its doors for a walk through the convivial rooms, a hot mocca and sweet things to eat. Special thanks to Joseph Nieke, the executive director of the Christmas Market at the Opernpalais and to Manfred Otte, a member of our association and owner of the OpernpalaisUnter den Linden.
25 November 2008 | Guided tour through the opera house | view behind the scenes
Discover the Opera House from another point of view, take a look behind the scenes and face hidden nooks and corners that you can not see as beholder. We gave our members this opportunity in November 2008. With excitement the attendee saw how the scenery for Hölderlin arose for the next performance, which would be the cloakroom of Daniel Barenboim and other artists rest during pauses, which amount of technique is needed for one performance and where the need of reconstruction is huge. “A view behind the scenes doesn’t only worth for visitors who don’t know the State Opera, but also for frequently visitors. You will come to now the opera house from another point of view.”, said an attendee.
15 November 2008 | Friends on tour – Paul Klee in the Nationalgalerie
The opening for the activities of the friends and sponsors in 2009 was an exclusive guided tour through the “Universum Klee”, an exhibition about Paul Klee in the Nationalgalerie. Within the exhibition series “The cult of the Artist” of the National Museums Berlin, the eclectic and fascinating universe of the individualist Klee was presented. About 250 selected works were categorized in 15 chapters from birth to death, about architecture, music, theatre, eros and many more. Each chapter of the exhibition profiles Klee’s work chronologically and enlightens specific aspects of his biography.
16 + 18 September 2008 | Friends on tour –Bunker-Art
In September we gave our members of friends and sponsors the exclusive opportunity to visit the collection of Christian Boros in his bunker in Berlin-Mitte. The bunker tells a history of clashes. In World War II inhabitants of Berlin found shelter, in times of the GDR the bunker was a storehouse for bananas, during the 90s the youth met there for parties while nowadays contemporary art decorates the refurbished rooms. Futuristic light installations, room-braking sculptures made from concrete and games with time, place and colours cover the bunker with spirit. Artists like Anselm Reyle or OlafurEliasson (he designed the stage of the Staatsoper for Hans Werner HenzesPhaedra) exhibit their opus. The bunker is open for the public since June 2008, but the weekly guided tour is booked out until January 2009. The art collector Christian Boros rebuilt the bunker of the Reichsbahn to his private museum and created in this way an unique and extraordinary place for contemporary art. In the following month we will offer our members further interesting events. You will find them in our monthly newsletter.