St Matthew Passion

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April 2021 Next

Music by Johann Sebastian Bach
First performed on 15th April, 1729 in Leipzig
Premiered at the Deutsche Oper Berlin on 25th April, 2021

In German language with German and English surtitles

3 hrs 30 mins / one interval

45 minutes before beginning: introduction

Program and cast

Conductor: Alessandro De Marchi

Director: Benedikt von Peter

Set design: Natascha von Steiger

Costume design: Lene Schwind

Video: Bert Zander

Light: Ulrich Niepel

Chorus Master: Jeremy Bines

Dramaturge: Dorothea Hartmann

Evangelist: Sebastian Kohlhepp

Jesus: Padraic Rowan

Bass: Thomas Lehman

Tenor: Michael Kim

Petrus: Joel Allison

Pilatus: Samuel Dale Johnson

Soprano: Mané Galoyan

Alto: Annika Schlicht

A two-faced witness: Annika Schlicht, Michael Kim

archpriest: Joel Allison

1st maidservant: Mané Galoyan

2nd maidservant: Annika Schlicht

Pontifex I: Samuel Dale Johnson

Pontifex II: Joel Allison

Deutsche Oper Berlin

The Deutsche Oper Berlin is an opera company located in the Charlottenburg district of Berlin, Germany. The resident building is the country's second largest opera house and also home to the Berlin State Ballet.

The company's history goes back to the Deutsches Opernhaus built by the then independent city of Charlottenburg—the "richest town of Prussia"—according to plans designed by Heinrich Seeling from 1911. It opened on November 7, 1912 with a performance of Beethoven's Fidelio, conducted by Ignatz Waghalter. After the incorporation of Charlottenburg by the 1920 Greater Berlin Act, the name of the resident building was changed to Städtische Oper (Municipal Opera) in 1925.


Deutsches Opernhaus, 1912
With the Nazi Machtergreifung in 1933, the opera was under control of the Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda. Minister Joseph Goebbels had the name changed back to Deutsches Opernhaus, competing with the Berlin State Opera in Mitte controlled by his rival, the Prussian minister-president Hermann Göring. In 1935, the building was remodeled by Paul Baumgarten and the seating reduced from 2300 to 2098. Carl Ebert, the pre-World War II general manager, chose to emigrate from Germany rather than endorse the Nazi view of music, and went on to co-found the Glyndebourne opera festival in England. He was replaced by Max von Schillings, who acceded to enact works of "unalloyed German character". Several artists, like the conductor Fritz Stiedry or the singer Alexander Kipnis followed Ebert into emigration. The opera house was destroyed by a RAF air raid on 23 November 1943. Performances continued at the Admiralspalast in Mitte until 1945. Ebert returned as general manager after the war.

After the war, the company in what was now West Berlin used the nearby building of the Theater des Westens until the opera house was rebuilt. The sober design by Fritz Bornemann was completed on 24 September 1961. The opening production was Mozart's Don Giovanni. The new building opened with the current name.

© Günter Karl Bose
© Christoph Niemann
© Bettina Stöß
© Christoph Niemann
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