German conductor Christian Thielemann will succeed Israeli-Argentine maestro Daniel Barenboim as conductor of the Berlin Staatsoper, which the latter left for health reasons, the prestigious German institution announced Wednesday. Last January, the 80-year-old Argentine-born pianist and conductor, Barenboim, who suffers from a serious neurological disease, announced his resignation from the Berlin Opera.
Berlin's head of culture, Joe Chialo, said that Christian Thielemann, who has regularly conducted the Berlin Staatsoper's Staatskapelle, will succeed Barenboim from September 2024. The Berlin Staatsoper, located on the main avenue Unter den Linden in the former SST part of the German capital, is one of the city's three opera houses.
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Born in Berlin, classical music star Christian Thielemann is known for his love of Johannes Brahms, Richard Strauss and Richard Wagner. Last year, his production at the Ring Staatsoper, Richard Wagner's famous tetralogy also known as the Ring of the Nibelung in French, was "unanimously described as phenomenal," according to the German daily Berliner Zeitung.
The 64-year-old German conductor is under contract until next year with the Staatskapelle Dresden, where he conducts the orchestra, one of the most renowned in the German-speaking world. A protégé of the legendary Herbert von Karajan, Christian Thielemann was general music director of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, an opera house in the west of the capital, but resigned in 2004 due to a funding dispute with the city.