April 1, 1959 - Berlin (Germany)
© Mat Hennek
Since the 2012/2013 season Christian Thielemann has been Principal Conductor of the Staatskapelle Dresden. Following engagements at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, in Gelsenkirchen, Karlsruhe, Hanover, and Dusseldorf, in 1988 he moved to Nuremberg to occupy the post of Generalmusikdirektor. In 1997 he returned to his hometown of Berlin to direct the Deutsche Oper until 2004, when he became Music Director of the Munich Philharmonic, a post he held until 2011. In addition to his current position in Dresden, Thielemann has been Artistic Director of the Salzburg Easter Festival, where the Staatskapelle served as resident orchestra, from 2013-22. In September 2023, Christian Thielemann was appointed to succeed Daniel Barenboim as General Music Director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden beginning in the 2024/25 season.
In previous seasons Christian Thielemann has contributed greatly to the birthday celebrations for Wagner, Strauss, and Beethoven. At the same time, he has explored a wide range of music from Bach to Henze, Rihm and Gubaidulina in Dresden and on tour. In the Semperoper he recently conducted new productions of Ariadne auf Naxos and Capriccio while for the Salzburg Easter Festival he interpreted Die Walküre, Tosca, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, and Lohengrin.
Christian Thielemann has enjoyed a close musical partnership with the Vienna Philharmonic since 2000 and conducted his first Vienna Philharmonic New Year's Concert in 2019. Thielemann leads the orchestra regularly in subscription concerts in the Vienna Musikverein, at the Salzburg Festival, and on tour in Japan, China, Europe, and the USA. Following a benchmark recording of the complete Beethoven Symphonies, Thielemann and the Vienna Philharmonic embarked on a project - during the pandemic - to record the complete Bruckner Symphonies for the Bruckner Anniversary Year 2024. This recorded cycle of all 11 Bruckner symphonies, a first in Philharmonic recording history, is released in Autumn 2023.
Christian Thielemann maintains close ties to the Berlin Philharmonic. Following his debut at the Bayreuth Festival in 2000, he has returned every year to thrill audiences with benchmark interpretations. After serving five years as the festival’s Musical Advisor, in June 2015 he became its Music Director. In addition, he has been invited to conduct the leading orchestras of Europe, the United States, Israel, and Asia.
As a UNITEL exclusive artist, Christian Thielemann has a comprehensive catalogue of recordings. His most recent projects with the Staatskapelle have been to record the symphonies of Anton Bruckner and Robert Schumann, Arnold Schoenberg’s Gurre-Lieder as well as numerous operas.
Christian Thielemann is an honorary member of the Royal Academy of Music in London, honorary professor at Dresden’s Carl Maria von Weber College of Music and holds honorary doctorates from the Franz Liszt University of Music in Weimar and the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. In 2003 he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. In May 2015 he received the Richard Wagner Prize from the Richard Wagner Society of the city of Leipzig, followed by the Prize of the Semperoper Trust in October 2016 and an honorary award of the state of Salzburg in April 2022. He is patron of the Richard-Wagner-Stätten in Graupa. His recordings have been showered with awards.