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Deutsche Oper Berlin

Tickets and information +49 (30) 343 84 343

  • 360° Virtual Tour



    On September 24, 1961 the Opernhaus that had been inaugurated in 1912 and destroyed during the War was reopened as Deutsche Oper Berlin. Ever since it has been Berlin´s largest and Germany´s second largest music theatre, featuring among the most modern institutions in Europe. The straightforward and elegant building that was realized by architect Fritz Bornemann (he also conceived the America Memorial Library and the Haus der Berliner Festspiele, a. o.) seats 1.859 and guarantees a maximum viewing and hearing experience for every visitor ... Visit the Deutsche Oper Berlin [here]

  • A Portrait

    It was almost like a miniature cultural revolution – when the citizens of Berlin dared to found the Deutsche Oper in 1912 in the (at that time) still independent town of Charlottenburg. The city’s own opera house, specifically dedicated to the modern musical theater of Richard Wagner – it was a clear counter to the venerable Unter den Linden Court Opera. And what’s more: the building on Bismarckstraße wasn’t just larger than all the other theaters in the city; by doing away with private boxes, it embodied the ideal of a “democratic” opera house, in which every seat offered a full view of the stage. Fritz Bornemann’s reconstruction of the building, opened in 1961, also remained true to the tradition of an opera for the people, without pomp and circumstance. Even today, its excellent sightlines and acoustics set the stage for exceptional musical theater, with room for almost 2,000 audience members each night. The generous foyers, whose architectural elegance is being re-evaluated in the present day, remain a central cultural gathering ground for the capital.

    The great vocalists of the last century, including Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Luciano Pavarotti, Christa Ludwig, and Julia Varady, conductors like Ferenc Fricsay, Giuseppe Sinopoli, and Christian Thielemann, and directors like Götz Friedrich and Hans Neuenfels have helped write the history of the building and bring an international flair to the Deutsche Oper. The opera house continues this tradition into the present: the breadth of works staged at the Deutsche Oper Berlin ranges from the classic / naturalist TOSCA from 1969 to a directorial concept involving film in RIENZI (directed by Philipp Stölzl) to productions like RIGOLETTO (directed by Jan Bosse), FALSTAFF (directed by Christof Loy), AIDA (directed by Benedikt von Peter) or SALOME (directed by Claus Guth), which reflect more recent developments at the theater. A rich repertoire of performances includes international star singers and first-class ensembles alike. Modern examinations of the great classics, from Mozart to Verdi and Wagner, to Strauss and Puccini, also play a key role at the theater. So do modern operas – such as Helmut Lachenmann’s DAS MÄDCHEN MIT DEN SCHWEFELHÖLZERN, Iannis Xenakis’ ORESTEIA, Georg Friedrich Haas‘ MORGEN UND ABEND or, for the 2016/2017 season, the inaugural performance of Andrea Lorenzo Scartazzini’s EDWARD II.

    Besides modern works, the Deutsche Oper Berlin has a clear focus on composers whose life’s work is underrepresented in current repertoires. Under the leadership of General Musical Director Donald Runnicles, the opera on Bismarckstraße has staged Leos Janácek with productions of DAS SCHLAUE FÜCHSLEIN (directed by Katharina Thalbach), JENUFA (directed by Christof Loy, available for purchase as a Grammy-nominated DVD), and DIE SACHE MAKROPULOS (directed by David Hermann). It is also working on a Benjamin Britten cycle with PETER GRIMES and BILLY BUDD (directed by David Alden), THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA (directed by Fiona Shaw) and DEATH IN VENICE (directed by Graham Vick). In the upcoming season, one special artistic treat will be a presentation of the operatic works of Giacomo Meyerbeer, who was once among the greatest Berlin composers but is now almost forgotten. Works by the composer that have either already been performed or are in the planning stages include: DINORAH ODER DIE WALLFAHRT NACH PLOËRMEL (concertante, CD-publication planned for 2016), VASCO DA GAMA (directed by Vera Nemirova), DIE HUGENOTTEN (2016, directed by David Alden), and DER PROPHET (2017, directed by Olivier Py).

    The orchestra of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, under General Music Director Donald Runnicles, ranks among the most outstanding musical ensembles in the country. Besides opera evenings, audiences can enjoy the orchestra during the Musikfest Berlin, at gala concerts in the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, and at the BBC Prom. The renowned choir has been named “Choir of the Year” multiple times in the past for its outstanding achievements.

    Since the 2012 season, when Dietmar Schwarz took over artistic direction, the Deutsche Oper Berlin has also had a second stage: the Tischlerei. As the name indicates: it was once a woodworking shop, but today young artists are developing new forms of opera and musical theater within its high workshop hall. Since the space was opened, approximately 9 premiers, revivals, and guest performances have taken place there each season. The architecturally open, flexible room determines the contour of the stage, encouraging performers to create musical theater that goes beyond the standard showcase. The space focuses exclusively on what’s new: inaugural performances of commissioned pieces, newly developed works, and new takes on older works. Productions for young people are a primary focus of the Tischlerei. Each year, it puts on at least one new opera for children and youth. Participatory projects, workshops, or presentations by the “Young Opera” (Junge Deutsche Oper) are a major priority. This arrangement, then, houses the musical theater of the 21st century under the same roof as the greatest operatic stage in Berlin. The orchestra of the Deutsche Oper Berlin also offers two concert series: the Tischlerei concerts and the series “Jazz & Lyrics.”

  • Dietmar Schwarz – Artistic Director


    Dietmar Schwarz © Peter Badge

    Dietmar Schwarz was born in Biberach an der Riss and studied literature and drama in Munich and the Sorbonne before working at the Theater Freiburg, Bremer Theater and Oper Frankfurt. In 1994 he returned as Head Dramatic Consultant for musical theatre at the Bremer Theater under the directorship of Klaus Pierwoß. He became Opera Director at the Nationaltheater Mannheim in 1998 and occupied the same post at the Theater Basel between 2006 and 2012. In a survey of critics in “Opernwelt” magazine the Basel venue was twice voted “Opera House of the Year” under his administration (2009 and 2010).

    In the summer of 2012 Dietmar Schwarz was appointed Intendant of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, opening his tenure with Helmut Lachenmann’s “The Little Match Girl”, an indication of his interest in presenting contemporary musical theatre. Subsequent seasons have seen productions of works by Mauricio Kagel, Iannis Xenakis and Georg Friedrich Haas, while music has also been commissioned from Andrea Lorenzo Scartazzini and Aribert Reimann.

    Alongside innovative productions of classic works by directors such as Christof Loy, Robert Carsen, Christian Spuck and Benedikt von Peter there has also been a focus on French grand opéra: new productions of major works by Giacomo Meyerbeer are planned at the Deutsche Oper Berlin for the 2015/16 and 2016/17 seasons. Dietmar Schwarz is also presiding over the presentation of Benjamin Britten pieces by General Music Director Donald Runnicles.

    The new TISCHLEREI performance space (opened in November 2012) is the ideal setting in which to experiment with new forms of musical theatre, present the premieres of children’s operas and also pursue projects for youngsters - a special area of interest for Dietmar Schwarz.

    He is a member of the jury of intendants that bestows the Ring Award on the winner of the International Competition for Stage Direction and Design in Graz. He is also a member of the think tank on the future of theatre in Lucerne, organised by the Theater Werk Luzern, and a member of the German Academy of Performing Arts.

  • Donald Runnicles – General Music Director

    Donald Runnicles  ©  Simon Pauly

    Conductor Donald Runnicles is concurrently the General Music Director of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Chief Conductor the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and Music Director of the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson, Wyoming. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Runnicles enjoys close and enduring relationships with several of the most significant opera companies and symphony orchestras, and is especially celebrated for his interpretations of Romantic and post-Romantic symphonic and opera repertoire which are core to his musical identity.

    Recent and upcoming highlights include guest conducting engagements with the Chicago Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra (Washington, DC), Tonhalle Orchester, and Staatskapelle Dresden. In the 16/17 season, he also leads two new productions at the Deutsche Oper (Britten's DEATH IN VENICE and Mozart's COSÌ FAN TUTTE), a complete RING cycle, in addition to seven revival titles.

    Prior posts include San Francisco Opera, where he was Music Director from 1992-2008 and during his tenure led world premieres of John Adams’s DOCTOR ATOMIC, Conrad Susa's LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES, and the U.S. premiere of Messiaen’s SAINT FRANÇOIS D’ASSISE; Chief Conductor of New York's Orchestra of St. Luke's; and General Music Director of the Freiburg theater and orchestra from 1989-1993. 

    Mr. Runnicles' extensive discography contains complete recordings of Wagner’s TRISTAN AND ISOLDE, Mozart’s “Requiem”, Orff’s CARMINA BURANA, Beethoven’s “Ninth Symphony”, Britten’s BILLY BUDD, Humperdinck’s HANSEL AND GRETEL,and Bellini’s I CAPULETI E I MONTECCHI. His most recent recording of Wagner arias with Jonas Kaufmann and the DOB orchestra won the 2013 Gramophone prize for best vocal recording.

    Maestro Runnicles was appointed OBE in 2004 and holds honorary degrees from the University of Edinburgh, Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, and San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

  • Thomas Fehrle – Executive Director

    Thomas Fehrle © Bettina Stöß


    Thomas Fehrle grew up in Hamburg and completed his Business studies in Lüneburg in 1989. He then took up a traineeship in the commercial administration department of the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg. From 1990 to 1991 he was sales manager at Kampnagel e.V. Hamburg. In 1992 he returned to the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg, heading the general administration department there until the spring of 1994, when he moved to Stralsund/Greifswald to take up the posts of Intendant, Administrative Director and Managing Director at the Vorpommersches Theater und Sinfonieorchester.

    He has been Administrative Director at the Staatstheater Braunschweig since 1998 and also its Deputy Intendant since 2004. Thomas Fehrle sits on the board of the German Stage Association (northern federation) and serves as an assessor at the Stage Arbitration Tribunal in Hamburg. He is also Vice Chairman of the Staatstheater Braunschweig Foundation.

    Since 1st August 2011 Thomas Fehrle has been Executive Director of the Deutsche Oper Berlin.

  • The Foyers in Pictures

    Deutsche Oper Berlin
    Kassenhalle © Bettina Stöß
    Rang-Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    Die Treppen im Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    Rang-Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    Rang-Foyer © Bettina Stöß
    2. Rang © Bettina Stöß
    Im Saal © Günter Karl Bose


  • Hiring our Rooms

    Would you like to organise an event for your clients or employees in the exclusive atmosphere of the foyer of the Deutsche Oper Berlin and round off the day with a visit to the opera?


    Contact and Information:
    Markus Winterstein
    Assistent of the Executive Director
    Telephon: +49 (0)30 34384 199
    Fax: +49 (0)30 34384 682
    E-mail: winterstein@deutscheoperberlin.de