Adam Fischer was born in Budapest in 1949 and studied composition and conducting first in Budapest and then later in a class by Hans Swarowsky in Vienna. His first engagement led him to the Opernhaus Graz as répétiteur. After that he soon became first capellmeister at the opera house in Helsinki, at the Staatstheater Karlsruhe and at the Bayerische Staatsoper. Between 1981 and 1983 he was GMD in Freiburg, 1987 to1992 in Kassel, 2000 to 2005 in Mannheim. Between 2007 and 2010 he was artistic director of the Hungarian State Opera.
He regularly conducts at the great opera houses in Europe and the USA, for example at the New York Met, La Scala, at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, in Bayreuth. In 1987 he was co-initiator of the Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt. Since 1998 he is also chief conductor of the Danish National Chamber Orchestra. As concert conductor he appears at the world´s most important music centres. He made his debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1980 with Otello and has conducted a large number of performances here, for example Rosenkavalier, Fledermaus, Der Ring des Nibelungen, Fidelio, Cavalleria rusticana, Mozart/Da Ponte-
For many years, four-time Grammy winner RENÉE FLEMING has been amongst the most important singers of the present and regularly performs on the most renowned international stages. Her comprehensive repertoire includes parts ranging from baroque to Mozart, Verdi, the French fach and Strauss to contemporary music. With the part of Ariadne, she added a new role to her repertoire in 2012. Recent performances include e.g. Arabella in a new production at the Paris Opera, Marschallin at the Münchner Opernfestspiele, Desdemona at the Met. In 2014, for example Rusalka at the Met as well as Blanche (A Streetcar Named Desire) in Los Angeles will follow. Renée Fleming´s singing technique has inspired many important artists. She is Knight of the French Legion of Honour and Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Music. She made her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1993 as Contessa and has also sung Donna Elvira, Gräfin (Capriccio) here.
KSCH Otto Schenk was born in Vienna in 1930 and experienced a childhood strongly influenced by the horrors of the Nazi regime.
After his education at the Max Reinhardt Seminar, he made his acting debut in Vienna. The first places of appearance in his career were the Theater an der Josefstadt and the Wiener Volkstheater. As of 1953 he also worked as theatre director and as of 1957, as opera director. Very soon his career led him to the world´s most important stages, for example the Wiener Burgtheater, the Münchner Kammerspiele, the New York Met, La Scala in Milan, the ROH Covent Garden, the Bayerische and Hamburgische Staatsoper or the Deutsche Oper Berlin. From 1965 to 1990 he was leading stage director at the Wiener Staatsoper, between 1986 and 1988 he was member of the Board of the Salzburger Festspiele, between 1988 and 1997 director of the Theater in der Josefstadt. Furthermore, he appeared in numerous television plays. He has staged about 30 different operas at the Wiener Staatsoper and furthermore performed as Frosch here.
SOPHIE KOCH studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris and won first prize in Holland's prestigious Hertogenbosch Competition. She celebrated her first major successes at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London (in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Così fan tutte) and at the Semperoper in Dresden (in Ariadne auf Naxos). Further performances soon took her to the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Vienna, Berlin, Milan, Paris, Toulouse, Brussels, Madrid, Geneva, as well as to the Salzburg Festival. Her current roles include Marie (Dialogues des Carmélites) in Nice, The Composer (Ariadne auf Naxos), Waltraute (Twilight of the Gods) and Venus (Tannhäuser) in Paris, Charlotte (Werther) in Madrid and London, and the title role in Mignon in Geneva. Sophie Koch has also achieved international success with lieder and as a concert performer. She made her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1999 as Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier. Her other roles in Vienna have included The Composer, Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Nicklausse (Les Contes d'Hoffmann), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro), Charlotte and Silla (Palestrina).
Peter Rose made his opera debut as Commendatore (Don Giovanni) in Hong Kong in 1986 in the course of a guest appearnce of the Glyndebourne Festival. Regular appearances have since then led him to Aix-en-Provence, Paris, London, Rome, to the New Yorker Metropolitan Opera, to Barcelona, to the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Komische Oper Berlin, the Berliner Staatsoper, to Sydney, to the Scottish Opera, to Hamburg, Tokyo, to the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London, to Chicago, San Francisco, Salzburg, Bregenz, Munich, Amsterdam and Dresden – to only name a few. He celebrated triumphs as Bottom (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Ochs (Der Rosenkavalier), Gurnemanz (Parsifal), Osmin (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Claggart (Billy Budd), Ramfis (Aida), Mustafa (L’italiana in Algeri), Philipp (Don Carlo), Kezal (Verkaufte Braut), Basilio (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Falstaff, Leporello (Don Giovanni), Walter (Luisa Miller), Daland (Der fliegende Holländer), Silva (Ernani), Fasolt (Das Rheingold). He made his debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1997 as Marke (Tristan und Isolde) and has since then sung Claggart, Gremin, Rocco, Gurnemanz, Ochs and Sarastro.
ILEANA TONCA was born in Rumania and studied at the Music Academy in Bucharest. She has won several singing competitions and has performed in Bucharest, Brasov and Timisoara as well as on tours in Germany, Austria, Italy and France. She has been a member of the ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper since 1999, where she debuted as Jemmy (Guillaume Tell). Furthermore, she has for example sung Woglinde (Das Rheingold, Götterdämmerung), Waldvogel (Siegfried), Echo (Ariadne auf Naxos), Lisa (La sonnambula), Xenia (Boris Godunow), Mädchen (Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny), Elvira (L’italiana in Algeri), Nannetta (Falstaff), Barbarina (Nozze di Figaro), Oscar, Papagena, Zerlina, Sophie (Rosenkavalier, Werther), Stimme vom Himmel and Tebaldo (Don Carlo), Zdenka (Arabella), Adele (Fledermaus), Servilia, Musetta, Adina, Susanna. Furthermore, she performed in productions of children´s operas (Traumfresserchen, Peter Pan, Bastien und Bastienne, 35. Mai, Pinocchio, Pünktchen und Anton). In 1999/2000 she was awarded an advancement award by the Waechter Medal Foundation. In 2004 she received the Austrian frauen.kunst.preis.
After his studies at the Musikhochschule in Vienna, where he studied among others under Walter Berry, Adrian Eröd’s career went from the Wiener Kammeroper over the Landestheater in Linz to the Wiener Volksoper and finally the Wiener Staatsoper, which would play a central role alongside his international engagements to his artistic future. Since his debut in 2001 at the Wiener Staatsoper as Mercutio inRoméo et Juliette, Adrian Eröd has sung works like Guglielmo, Beckmesser, Loge, Conte d’Almaviva, Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Dr. Falke, Albert, the leading role in Benjamin Brittens Billy Budd, Olivier (Capriccio) and the male leading role- which was written for him – Jason in Aribert Reimanns Medea. He has also sung, among others at the Teatro La Fenice in Venedig (Harlekin), an der Hamburgischen Staatsoper (Pelléas), an der Oper Frankfurt (Prospero in Adès’ The Tempest), bei den Bayreuther Festspielen und an der Oper Zürich (Beckmesser). Finally, he has sung e.g. at the Tokyo National Opera, the Opéra de Paris and at the Bayreuther Festspielen.
Roles for the Wiener Staatsoper 2014/2015: Prospero, Eisenstein.
Simina Ivan was born in Temesvar, Romania and completed a vocal degree at the University of Bukarest. She was supervised among others, by Magda Ianculescu, KS Ileana Cotrubas, and in the last 18 years by KS Margarita Lilowa. Already during her studies, she sang numerous roles at the Bukarest Operetten Theatre and won several prizes at international competitions in Paris, Toulouse, Coburg, Nantes and Bukarest. From 1990 to 1994, she sang at the Romanian National Opera in Bukarest. In September 1994, she gave her debut at the Vienna Volksoper as Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, where she also sang roles like Pamina, Marguerite, Ophélie, Leila, Norina and Gretel. In addition to her concert performances, she has also made guest appearances in opera houses in Hamburg, Dresden, Zurich, Berlin and London. In 2003, the Romanian president appointed her an officer of the Order of Meritul Cultural. In December 1994, she gave her debut at the house on the Ring as Olga in Fedora. Since then, roles like Oscar (Un ballo in maschera), Najade (Ariadne auf Naxos), Rosina, Musetta, Konstanze, Aminta, Adele and Rosalinde, Adina, Eudoxie, Antonia, Despina, Pamina and Lisa (La sonnambula) have followed.
KS Walter Fink was born in Bregenz and completed his studies of vocal arts as well as ancient philology in Vienna. In 1977 he was accepted to the Opernstudio of the Wiener Staatsoper and one year later became member of the ensemble.
In the years 1982-1991 he was engaged in Bremen, until he returned to the Wiener Staatsoper in 1991, where he has been a member of the ensemble ever since and performs in his fach bass and bass-baritone. Engagements have lead him to Berlin, Lyon, Toulouse, the New York Met and to the Bregenzer Festspiele. He has sung about 70 different parts at the Wiener Staatsoper, among them Sarastro (Die Zauberflöte), Osmin (Entführung aus dem Serail), Rocco (Fidelio), Colline (La Bohème), Kaspar (Freischütz), Doktor (Wozzeck), Warlaam (Boris Godunow), König Heinrich (Lohengrin), Veit Pogner (Meistersinger von Nürnberg), Titurel (Parsifal), Daland (Der fliegende Holländer), Grand Inquisiteur (Don Carlos), Fafner (Siegfried), Melcthal (Guillaume Tell) und Kardinal Brogni (La Juive). In 2001 he became Österreichischer Kammersänger.
Rolls at the Wiener Staatsoper 2012/2013: e.g. Schließer (Tosca), Schmidt (Andrea Chénier).
KS Peter Jelosits was born in Vienna. He was a member of the Wiener Sängerknaben and studied vocal arts at the University of Music and at the Conservatory in Vienna. Between 1983 and 1985 he was member of the Opernstudio of the Wiener Staatsoper. In 1984 he debuted as 1. Priester (Die Zauberflöte). Since 1985 he has been member of the ensemble at the house on the Ring. He has performed at festivals such as the Carinthische Sommer, the Wiener Festwochen, at the Schubertiade Hohenems and the Salzburger Festspielen. At the Wiener Staatsoper he has for example appeared as Jaquino (Fidelio), Normanno (Lucia di Lammermoor), Rodrigo (Otello), Wirt (Rosenkavalier), Gaston (La traviata), Yamadori (Madama Butterfly), Arbace (Idomeneo), Missail (Boris Godunow), Scaramuccio (Ariadne auf Naxos), Hirt (Tristan und Isolde), Dr. Blind (Die Fledermaus), Heinrich (Tannhäuser), Narr (Wozzeck), Monsieur Taupe (Capriccio), Titelrolle Traumfresserchen, Sir Hervey (Anna Bolena), Rustighello (Lucrezia Borgia), Tschekalinski (Pique Dame), Don Curzio (Le nozze di Figaro).
Roles for the Wiener Staatsoper 2014/2015: Yamadori, 2. Jude, 4. Knappe, Harry (Fanciulla del west), Dr. Blind.
JINXU XIAHOU was born in Zibo in the Eastern Chinese province Shadong in December 1990. He began studying with Prof. Wang Xianlin in 2008 at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing (China) and completed his studies as bachelor. Jinxu Xiahou made his stage debut as Basilio in Eugen Onegin at the Tianqiao Opera in Beijing. He made his Europe debut in 2010, when he sang at the annual Classic Night in Zurich. In the year 2011 he was finalist of the renowned international singing competition Neue Stimmen of the Bertelsmann Foundation in Gütersloh and won the third prize. In 2012 he debuted at the Wiener Staatsoper where he has sung (exerpt) Conte di Lerma/Un areldo reale (Don Carlo Italian), Gaston (La traviata), Sänger (Rosenkavalier), Stimme des Seemanns (Tristan und Isolde), Rodrigo (Otello), Abdallo (Nabucco), Zweiter Jude (Salome), Bote (Aida), Comte de Lerme/Herold (Don Carlos French). He is a member of the ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper.
HILA FAHIMA graduated from the Jerusalem Rubin Academy for Music, where she learned under Agnes Massini. During her studies, she appeared in several productions, among them as Adele in der Fledermaus, als Belinda in Dido and Aeneas, als Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro und als Frasquita in Carmen. In 2010, she gave her debut at the New Israeli Opera in the leading role of the opera Alice in Wonderland by David Sebba. In 2010, she won the first prize in the European singing competition, Debut and in 2013 the first prize in the Stella-Maris competition. In 2010, she joined the ensemble of the Deutschen Oper Berlin, where she sang among others Königin der Nacht in der Zauberflöte, Nannetta in Falstaff, Najade in Ariadne auf Naxos, Ninetta in Die Liebe zu den drei Orangen, Demele inDie Liebe der Danae and Ruggiero in Tancredi. Since the 2013/2014 season, she is an ensemble member of the Wiener Staatsoper, where she made her debut as Frasquita and also sang among others Papagena and Oscar. Finally, she sang Amore in Orfeo et Euridice as well as Oscar in Un ballo in maschera at the New Israeli Opera as well as the Queen of the Night at the Oper Graz. She is also successful as a concert singer.
KS Herwig Pecoraro was born in Bludenz and studied in Feldkirch, Mantua and Modena and took part in master classes with KS Schwarzkopf. Guest appearances have led him to the Bregenzer and Salzburger Festspiele, the opera houses in Bern, St. Gallen, Hamburg, Munich, Paris, Nice, Toulouse, Milan, New York and San Francisco. He was engaged at the Opernhaus Graz and at the Volksoper Wien, since 1991 he is member of the ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper, where he made his debut as Steuermann (Der fliegende Holländer) and has since then sung (selection) Jaquino (Fidelio), Monostatos and 1. Geharnischter (Die Zauberflöte), Alfred (Die Fledermaus), Pedrillo (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Mime (Das Rheingold, Siegfried), Hirt (Tristan und Isolde), Beppe (Pagliacci), Andres/Cochenille/Frantz/Pitichinaccio (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), Bob Boles (Peter Grimes), David (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg), Incroyable (Andrea Chenier), Bardolfo (Falstaff), Goro (Madama Butterfly), Guillot (Manon) as well as Klammerschneider (Riese vom Steinfeld) and Fatty here.
Roles at the Wiener Staatsoper 2013/2014: e.g. Bob Boles (Peter Grimes), Herodes (Salome), Hauptmann (Wozzeck), Mime (Das Rheingold).
THOMAS EBENSTEIN was born in 1979 in Carinthia, and studied vocal arts at the Vienna University of Music under Helena Lazarska. From 2003 to 2012 the tenor was an ensemble member at the Komische Oper Berlin, and since the 2012/2013 season, he has been an ensemble member of the Wiener Staatsoper. Guest appearences have led him among others, to the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, the Semperoper Dresden, the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, the Grand Théatre de Genève, the Theater an der Wien, the Volksoper in Vienna, the Carnegie Hall in New York, the Philarmonie in Berlin, the Laeiszhalle in Hamburg, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Vienna Musikverein, the Vienna Konzerthaus, the Ruhrtriennale Bochum, the Wiener Festwochen, the Easter Festival in Salzburg, the Salzburg Festival, the Bergen International Festival, and to the Hong Kong Arts Festival.
His repertoire includes such roles as Pedrillo (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Truffaldino (Die Liebe zu den drei Orangen), David (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg), Narraboth (Salome) and Alfred (Die Fledermaus). He made his debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 2012 and sang, among others, Tanzmeister, Andres, Incroyable, Andrès/Cochenille/Frantz/Pitichinaccio, Guillot de Morfontaine, Valzacchi and Monostatos.
Mezzo-soprano Ulrike Helzel was born in Magdeburg and completed her vocal arts studies at the University of Music in Leipzig. She was member of the ensemble at the Deutsche Oper Berlin for many years, where she sang Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro, Fuchs in Das schlaue Füchslein, Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel, Siébel in Gounod´s Faust, Orpheus in Orpheus und Euridice and Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier.
Since autumn 2012 she is member of the ensemble at the Wiener Staatsoper. Since 2006 she appears as a guest at the Bayreuther Festspiele, first as Wellgunde in the Ring and since 2008 as Blumenmädchen and Knappe in Parsifal. Ulrike Helzel has appeared as a guest for example at the Theater Basel, the Komische Oper, the Semperoper (title role Carmen), the Nationaltheater Weimar, the Opernhaus Halle, the Opéra de Lyon, the Opéra La Monnaie Brüssel, the Bayerische Staatsoper München, the Nederlandse Opera Amsterdam, at the Festival de Canarias, at the Dresdner Musikfestspiele.
She made her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 2011 and sang Wellgunde (Rheingold, Götterdämmerung), Zweite Norn (Götterdämmerung), Siegrune (Walküre) here.
It is early one morning. The field marshal's wife, neglected by her husband, has spent a night of rapturous passion with her lover Octavian. Without any warning, her cousin bursts in: the lecherous Baron Ochs von Lerchenau. Ochs is due to marry Sophie Faninal, the daughter of a rich parvenu, and is looking for a suitable Rosenkavalier (or Knight of the Rose) to present a ceremonial rose to his future bride. However, he takes an immediate liking to the ‘chambermaid’ that he finds with the field marshal's wife, and makes certain unambiguous propositions to her. The field marshal's wife recommends Octavian as a suitable rose-bearer, showing Ochs a portrait of him in a locket; Ochs is greatly surprised at the striking ‘resemblance’ of the portrait to the ‘chambermaid’, but accepts the recommendation.
When Octavian first meets Sophie in his role as Knight of the Rose, the two young people instantly fall in love. Ochs, who is only interested in the girl’s dowry, continues to act in a very coarse and leering manner, and Sophie no longer has any intention of marrying him. When Ochs tries to force her to sign the marriage contract, Octavian draws a sword, challenges him to a duel and inflicts a minor wound to his arm. The general chaos that follows prevents the marriage from being legally concluded. To undermine the proposed marriage once and for all, a trap is also set for Ochs. In a letter, the ‘chambermaid’ invites him to an assignation at an inn on the outskirts of town...
Ochs accepts the ‘chambermaid’s’ offer with enthusiasm and meets her at the inn as agreed. Just as he is about to lay hands on ‘her’, various figures force their way into the room, and a chaotic masquerade ensues. Finally, Faninal, Sophie, a police commissioner and the field marshal's wife also arrive. Ochs is forced to admit that he is no longer a suitable groom for Sophie. Octavian and Sophie remain sheepishly behind with the field marshal's wife. Once she is sure where Octavian’s affections now lie, she relinquishes him - in complete control of the scene - to the younger Sophie, and leaves the young couple to their fate.