The Munich Opera Festival, founded in 1875, is really like no other in the world. Several productions from the regular season return for a couple of added performances, featuring many of opera’s greatest stars. The fabulous 2020 season officially runs from 21st June – 30th July and there will be twelve operas performed in six weeks. The official opening of the summer festival will be with Kirill Petrenko on 5th July with the premiere of Giuseppe Verdi’s Falstaff but there are matinees and pre festival performances in the build up which will add the the excitement of the occasion.. Tickets are on sale from 1st February, so be sure to contact us soon.
Since its founding over 140 years ago, the Munich Opera Festival has lost nothing of its attraction: it is still a huge annual highlight and key destination for the discerning opera goer. When this wonderful international festival(with the richest history of its kind ) begins again at the end of June 2019, opera lovers from Munich, from Germany and from all over the globe will set out to share their enthusiasm for world class performance together.
In 1875 the Munich Opera Festival took place for the first time which can nowadays can be viewed as one of the most important opera festivals worldwide. It is now organised by the Bavarian State Opera and the Bavarian State Ballet and offers more than 30 opera performances, evening song recitals, concerts and ballet productions in truly splendid settings.
Venues in Munich at which the performances of the Opera Festival takes place include the National Theatre , the Prinzregententheater, the Cuvilliés-Theater,the Allerheiligen-Hofkirche and other venues. Besides opera, concerts of chamber music are also given. The festival is formally opened each year with a choral concert performed as part of a full Roman Catholic church service at Michaelskirche. A festival highlight is Opera for All, the live transmission of a full-length production from the theatre to an outdoor audience seated at the Max-Joseph-Platz.
2020 has a truly fantastic line up of world class stars to tantalise and entertain you and here a just a few of the opera highlights from this star studded festival!
2020 Festival Highlights
Castor et Pollux
In Jean-Philippe Rameau’s opera is based on Greek myth. Castor et Pollux is the story of brotherly and romantic love that brings its own heroic rescue of Castor from the Underworld, as Pollux encounters the devils and monsters that try to bar his way. Eventually both brothers are granted immortality, taking their place in the sky as the heavenly twins. The conductor is Ivor Bolton. At the Prinzregententheater.
Dates: 26, 28 (both 18.00h) 30 (18.30h) Jun 2020, 2 ( 18.30h) Jul 2020.
Judith: Concerto for Orchestra/ Bluebeard’s Castle
Bluebeard’s Castle, Béla Bartók’s only opera, tells the story of Judith and Bluebeard. Judith is infatuated with Bluebeard, happy to leave her family and finances for him. She brushes anxiety aside and declares impulsively that she will bring warmth, brightness and love to Bluebeard’s castle. Through opening seven doors of the castle, Bluebeard reveals different sides of his personality until the final compelling door is opened and darkness descends! Concerto for Orchestra revisits themes from the opera. Nina Stemme stars as Judith and the conductor is Oksana Lyniv. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates : 27(18.00h) 29 (19.00h) Jun 2020
Verdi’s I Masnadieri (The Bandits), is a story about tragic love, feuding brothers, and a gang of young rebels indulging in the most horrible crimes. Musically rich and complex, this opera deals with contemporary issues: young people’s rebelliousness, or Man’s difficulties in dealing with the vagaries of fate. The fabulous Diana Damrau stars and the conductor is Michele Mariotti. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 1, 4(both at 19.00h) Jul 2020.
Festival Gala of the Opera Studio 2020
This is a gala concert to celebrate the new decade. The programme for the evening is yet unannounced but the soloist is wonderful Uruguayan bass-baritone Erwin Schrott and the conductor is Andrea Battistoni. At Nationaltheater.
Date: 3 Jul 2020 at 19.00h.
In Verdi’s comic opera which is based on the Shakesperian character, Old, large and lecherous, Sir John Falstaff can’t resist the ladies. But they can resist him, and three of them plot to put an end to his advances once and for all. General Music Director Kirill Petrenko is the conductor. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 5, 8, 11, 14 Jul 2020 all at 19.00h.
Set in the period of the Napoleonic wars, Toscais based on true events which unfolded in Rome during a period of great turmoil. Puccini put his heart and soul into this story of political intrigue and doomed love. The three principal characters, Tosca, a famous singer, Cavaradossi, an artist and her lover, and Baron Scarpia, head of the secret police who is one of the most evil of operatic villains, are all finely drawn in Puccini’s sublime score. This production stars Sonya Yoncheva in the title role with Riccardo Massi and Erwin Schrott. The conductor is Marco Armiliato. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 7, 10 jul 2020 at 19.00h.
Verdi’s Otello is a grand masterpiece, it boils down Shakespeare’s play to its essentials and what it lacks in poetry it more than makes up for in music. Otello is based on Shakespeare’s play of 1603. Verdi pares down Shakespeare to four scenes cutting characters (no Brabantio or Bianca) and adding lovely operatic flourishes such as flower-ladies singing to Desdemona. He already had plenty to work with because with its malevolent evil, sexual jealousy, murder and suicide, Othello has all the ingredients of a music drama. Gregory Kunde portrays the title role with Anja Harteros as Desdemona. Adam Fischer conducts. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 12, 15 Jul 2020 at 19.00h.
Jonas Kaufmann and Helmut Deutsch
Another amazing concert night featuring the incredible smouldering German opera tenor Jonas Kaufmann and Austrian classical pianist, Helmut Deutsch. The programme is still to be confirmed. At the Nationaltheater.
Date: 13 Jul 2020 at 20.00h.
Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin is a radiant example of Russian Lyric Opera. A deeply moving tale packed with big tunes, dances and a heart-stopping duel. As with his ballets, Tchaikovsky brings many symphonic elements to the music, plush orchestrations and highly melodic arias. Russian baritone Igor Golovatenko stars in the title role and the conductor is Henrik Nánási. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 17, 20 Jul 2020 at 19.00h.
Verdi’s Nabucco could be conceptualized as the protest opera for all seasons. It premiered in 1842, when Giuseppe Verdi was 28 years old. Nabucco” is the story of the Assyrian King, Nebuchadnezzar, who came in 587 B.C. with his armies to desecrate Jerusalem, kill the Israelites, and destroy the Temple of Solomon. The most familiar theme from “Nabucco” is the chorus of the Hebrew slaves at the end of Part IV, “Va, Pensiero” – Go Thoughts, or Hasten Thoughts. The inimitable Plácido Domingo stars in the title role and Paolo Carignani conducts. At the Nationaltheater.
Dates: 27, 30 Jul 2020 at 19.00h.
What a truly wonderful season at the Munich Opera Festival!