Alfred Eschwé


Back to the Gärtnerplatztheater

There he has already had the opportunity to conduct Der Wildschütz by Lortzing. Alfred Eschwé is very much looking forward to returning to Munich's Gärtnerplatztheater to conduct Nicolaï's Die lustigen Weiber von Windsor.

Performances on May 31 and June 2, 2024

All dates of performances

Happy New Year!

Alfred Eschwé is indeed a great conductor with high and comprehensive specialist expertise concerning the entire repertoire on stage and in concert. However, his name is in particular also associated with the musical splendour of the New Year.

The Viennese conductor knows like no one else how to compile a New Year's Concert programme in perfect balance between well-known classical works and wonderful discoveries. He knows moreover how to conduct and present such concert by heart, not only to the musical delight of the audience, but also to their amusement. A New Year's Concert with Alfred Eschwé is the guarantee of a cheerful and felicitous entry to the New Year which he proves successfully once again in 2024 as a guest of the outstanding Tonkünstler Orchestra Niederösterreich.

With Alfred Eschwé the New Year's mood even outreaches the month of January by far! In March he will join for the first time the Bergen National Opera (Norway) conducting the Strauß-operetta Die Fledermaus (The bat) and in May he will return to the Cologne WDR Funkhausorchester for the concert-programme "Alles Walzer!".

All dates of performances


Finally back to Cologne!

The pandemic imposed a sudden break on the till then intense and on both sides pleasing collaboration of Alfred Eschwé and the Cologne Gürzenich Orchestra. Long-term planned projects with extensive runs of Die Fledermaus (The bat) and Rusalka needed to be omitted totally. Then at least some performances of Mozart’s Magic Flute could be arranged on short notice in autumn 2020. All the more joyous that Alfred Eschwé can join a complete revival at the Cologne Opera now conducting all performances of the Carmen-series to open on May 6, 2022!

Bizet’s most successful opera has been an essential part of Alfred Eschwé’s repertory since years; he already conducted Carmen previously at the Hamburg State Opera, the Vienna Volksoper and the St. Margarethen Opera Festival.

Details concerning the Cologne-revival.

All dates of performances


New Year like never before

Particular times require particular solutions. Throughout 23 years Alfred Eschwé created the New Year’s Concert of the Tonkünstler-Orchestra Niederösterreich, having also conducted and presented innumerable concert of this series in various towns. And then Covid 19 has put the kibosh on this planning at this change of the years. However, none is willing to abstain from devoured traditions so frivolously! The planned and already prepared program for 2021 was thus played at the St. Pölten Festival Hall without an audience for TV-cameras only. After all a welcome media compensation for everyone at home during the lockdown!

Moreover a New Year’s program of the Tonkünstler-Orchestra was recorded for CD in great foresight already last year to be released meanwhile too. Of course, with Alfred Eschwé conducting the orchestra and with a manifold program which also includes music by Dvorák, Gounod, Elgar and Lumbye next to Strauß, Lehár und Suppé! Samples from both New Year’s Concerts can be heard in the audio-files on this webpage. Link

The Cologne Opera is also making magic again

After months of shutdown due to the covid 19 pandemic the Cologne Opera is also getting back to performing again on October 3rd, 2020 even with a remarkable stage-production: Mozart’s The Magic Flute is being staged following a conception by the legendary director and theatre maker Michael Hampe who was guiding the fortunes of the Cologne Opera as theatre-manager throughout 20 years.

For the numerous scheduled performances of this new-production the Cologne Opera has engaged a multiple cast concerning the soloists, but also two conductors sharing the performances of the series. Hence Alfred Eschwé is taking over the musical direction of The Magic Flute in Cologne too, an opera which he already made his Vienna State Opera debut in 2003 with; however, he also conducted this piece previously already at the Hamburg State Opera, the Tokyo New National Theatre and with other opera-companies.

Details concerning the performance-series at the Cologne Opera

Restart at the Tivoli-Birthday in Copenhagen

Owing to the donation of the Danish king Christian VIII., an area at the former Copenhagen rampart could be reshaped as one of the worldwide first leisure parks in 1843. On August 15ththe „Kjobenhavns Tivoli“ was solemnly opened and since then this jubilee is being commemorated on August 15thevery year. In 2020, however, it is not only this anniversary which is being celebrated, but this day also means the musical re-start after the months of the performance-ban due to the worldwide covid-19-pandemic.

The Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra is giving its first concert after the lock-down playing a spirited program which also includes Danish rarities. Danish opera-star Bo Skovhus and Russian soprano Yana Kleyn are the vocal soloist and Alfred Eschwé is taking over the skilful musical direction of the concert which is being played even twice at the Tivoli Concert Hall on August 15th.

It is also for Maestro Eschwé a re-start after months of absence from stage and conductor’s stand. But whoever knows him, is certainly aware of fact that he did not bear to stay inactive even in times of the lock-down, which made him initiate a Blue-Danube-Waltz@home with his Vienna Volksoper Orchestra for the internet.

An utterly precarious piece

Though the operetta The Gypsy Baron by Johann Strauß is musically a real masterpiece of the genre, any staged production equals a precarious endeavour due to subject and plot. Too delicate are the folkloristic warmongering and the stereotype of gypsy life, which may no more be appropriately denominated like this nowadays. Nevertheless the Vienna Volksoper and stage-director Peter Lund resolved to accomplish a new-production of the piece, certainly superb in originality of performed version and statement. Johann-Strauß-expert Alfred Eschwé is definitely the ideal maestro for the production, having already conducted all important standards from the waltz-king’s stage-repertory in numerous performances at his Vienna home-theatre. Right after the Vienna premiere-series he will conduct a revival of The Bat (Die Fledermaus) at the Cologne Opera.

The by all means opera-like challenges for the participating singers of the leading parts of The Gypsy Baron demand to have the top-class-artists of the Volksoper, among them Kristiane Kaiser giving her role-debut as Saffi within this production.

Opening-night on February 29th, 2020 with subsequent performances in changing vocal casts until early April.
Further information

Subsumption of the press:
“Great compliment to Alfred Eschwé and the Volksoper-Orchestra: This is exactly how spirited Strauß needs to be played.”
(MDA / Falter 04.03.2020)

Into the new season with Wagner

Apart from standard-repertoire-performances the season-start is also providing a special challenge to Alfred Eschwé at his Vienna home-theatre: For the first time in Vienna he will be at the conductor’s desk for a Wagnerian opera having the lead of the performance-series of The Flying Dutchman. For the first time in Vienna, but not for the first time in his career having conducted this opera already many years ago within his first steady engagement.

Wagner’s Flying Dutchman will be performed in Vienna in the ballad-version as requested by the composer which means running through without an intermission. Kristiane Kaiser is again part of the cast, singing the role of Senta which she already performed most successfully within the premiere-series last season. Most of the roles are double-casted. Alfred Eschwé, however, is conduction all performances of the series on September 22nd, 25th, 28th as well as October 2nd, 8th and 12th, 2019.

Further Details concerning the performance-series at the Vienna Volksoper

Italian finale of the opera-season

Directly after an extensive series of La Traviata at the Vienna Volksoper throughout the month of June, Alfred Eschwé will be conducting a run of Tosca-performances at the Cologne Opera for the conclusion of the opera-season. In Cologne Adina Aaron, José Cura and Samuel Youn will get together for Puccini’s Verismo-thriller in quite a fierce staging at the Statenhaus. Following the official revival on June 30th further performances will take place on July 2nd, 5th, 11th and 14th.

Details concerning the Cologne performance-series

May-tunes at the Golden Hall

The Vienna Musikverein does not only at New Year prove to be the perfect performance-venue for the precious works by the Strauß-brothers! The Vienna Johann Strauß Orchestra has its own appointed days within every year’s concert schedule including a spring-concert at the Golden Hall of the Musikverein to which the orchestra under the masterly conducting of Alfred Eschwé is inviting on May 1st 2019 in a matinee-concert at 11 a.m.

The Vienna Johann Strauß Orchestra strongly emphasizes a genuine performance by referring to the instrumentation as having been mandatory at the time when this music was written. The first half of the programme is dedicated to the soulful oeuvre by Josef Strauß and after the intermission exclusively music by the waltz-king Johann Strauß II will be played. It does perhaps not need to be explicitly said that the all-round maestro Alfred Eschwé is, of course, the ideal authority at the conductor’s stand within this musical genre.

More information concerning this concert

At the chambre séparée

The traditional opera-ball at the Vienna State Opera is over, at least for this year. The one at the Vienna Volksoper, however, can be first attended on February 17 and then another ten times at the same venue until end of March. In this context we are talking about Richard Heuberger’s greatest operetta-success including the catchy tune “At the chambre separée”. The golden era of Viennese operetta which was ruled by Franz von Suppé, Johann Strauß and Carl Millöcker, received another special highlight with Heuberger’s The Opera-Ball (Der Opernball) in 1898.

New-productions of operettas from the golden era are usually in Alfred Eschwé’s competent hands at the Vienna Volksoper, even though his almost unrivalled repertory in opera and operetta surpasses any limit. An expert maestro is urgently requested at the conductor’s desk for Der Opernball anyway! Already with the famous overture the orchestra is on delicate trial. Eschwé rehearsed the operetta with all its waltzes, mazurkas, gallops and cotillions applying French scent and esprit, although the original setting of Paris is transferred to the suburban Vienna in this production.

The vocal soloists of the opening-night appear under Kristiane Kaiser’s lead as Angelika Wimmer (Angèle Aubier in the original version); she will also perform this role in the subsequent performances on February 23 and March 4, 7, 11 and 18, 2018.

An excerpt from the overture can be found among the audio-clips on this homepage: Link

Further details concerning the Vienna Volksoper new-production: Link

In the grapes’ fiery stream

For the conclusion of the old year and for the prelude of the new one, the music by Johann Strauß is everywhere emitting best moods like sparkling champagne. Peak season therefore also for the Strauß-expert Alfred Eschwé! Right after having made his debut with the Cologne Opera in December, he conducted a Christmas Concert with a widely spread programme at his home-theatre, the Vienna Volksoper, before producing the traditional series of New Year’s Concerts of the Tonkünstler-Orchesters Niederösterreich. Operetta-tunes, waltzes, polkas and quadrilles from the Waltz-King’s oeuvre are building a main focus of these concerts too.

His ensuing engagement sees Alfred Eschwé’s long journey to the Far East, again as a Stauß-ambassador. At the New National Theatre in Tokyo he will be conducting the revival of Die Fledermaus (The bat) on January 18th, 2018; a production which he already caused a sensation with at the premiere in 2015. He will be joined by several soloists from the Vienna State Opera and Volksoper ensembles who have been closely connected to the maestro since many years.

Details concerning the Tokyo New National Theatre production link

A real popular opera

Alexander Borodin wrote his – in the literal meaning – popular opera throughout decades without managing to complete it in his lifetime. Prince Igor after all remained his one and only work for the stage. The engagement of colleague composers after Borodin’s death finally accomplished the performance.

The Vienna Volksoper recollects its actual commitment of repertory and undergoes the Sisyphus-challenge to present the most voluminous and ambitious opera in German translation. Every theatre which meets such challenge needs to compile a performable version out of the unmanageable music material. This can for sure be expected from super-professional Alfred Eschwé.

With the premiere of Borodin’s opera Eschwé also celebrates an individual jubilee: Slightly more than 25 years ago he conducted his first opera-premiere at this house with even Russian repertory too: Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin in the staging of Harry Kupfer.

Borodin’s Prince Igor, staged by Thomas Schulte-Michels, will be performed at the Volksoper until end of April. Alfred Eschwé has the lead of the opening night on March 19th and the performances on March 22nd as well as April 4th, 10th, 13th, 18th, 20th and 24th. You can find the popular Polovtsian Dances from this opera under Alfred Eschwé‘s baton among his audio-clips on our webpage.

Let the champagne corks pop!

When the year is close to the end one can hear numerous orchestras rehearse elegant three quarter time or lively gallop beat, however, for sure music in high champagne spirits. Alfred Eschwé, renowned as an exquisite expert of the brilliant music by Strauß & Co., always has the busiest time around the change of the years. As final notes for 2015 and as off-beat for 2016 he rehearses again the New Year’s programme of the Tonkünstler Orchestra which will be played at the Vienna Musikverein, the St. Pölten’s Festival Hall and numerous towns throughout Lower Austria. Alfred Eschwé himself takes the lead for more than 10 of these concerts.

Maestro Eschwé this time also refers to an upcoming opera premiere under his baton in March 2016 by focussing part of the concert programme on Russian dances combined with the Gold and Silver music by Suppé, Strauß and Lehár. For the first time in his career Eschwé will conduct Alexander Borodin’s peoples’ drama Prince Igor at the Vienna Volksoper. The Polovtsian Dances from this opera can already be heard in the Tonkünstler New Year’s concerts, next to works by Shostakovich and Rubinstein. You can find a teaser for this part of the programme among this artist’s audio-files on our webpage: a furious gallop by Khachaturian

First appearance with the Dresden „Miracle Harp“

It is a magic moment in every conductor’s career to be appointed to conduct the Dresden Staatskapelle for the first time. Looking back on more than 450 years of continued existence, the orchestra is regarded as one of the oldest of the world and named by Richard Wagner the Royal “Miracle Harp”. Alfred Eschwés gets this special honor now with German repertoire, even with a premiere production.

On October 10th, 2015 Alfred Eschwé appears for the first time in the Semperoper orchestra pit to conduct Albert Lortzing’s comic opera Der Wildschütz (The Poacher). Eschwé already had a major success with a new production of this opera in Vienna 2013. Particularly as the German comic opera is mostly neglected in nowadays opera business, a knowledgeable conductor is needed to bring such opera to bear.

All details of the Dresden new-production series

Waltz and galop go Far East

The start of the New Year is high season for the music of the Strauß-family generally and for Die Fledermaus (The bat) particularly. The peak of the middle-Eurpean entertainment theatre is being performed far beyond the limits of Europe. When the New National Theatre in Tokyo decided to perform the operetta, it secured the participation of recognized professionals from the banks of the river Danube. Alexandra Reinprecht (Rosalinda), Adrian Eröd (Eisenstein), Klemens Sander (Falke) and Boris Eder (Frosch) are regarded as experts within this genre. Last but not least, Alfred Eschwé provides his enormous élan and knowledgeable interpretation from the conductor’s podium. Could he grow weary of Strauß’ waltzes, polkas and galops one day? Surely not! The king of Waltz’s music is an everlasting fountain of youth for him.

Performance dates of the new Tokyo-Fledermaus:  January 29th, February 1st*, 4th*, 6th  and 8th*,  2015 (*afternoon performances at 2 pm). Link

Alfred Eschwé‘s audio-clips on our webpage also include music by Strauß, Millöcker and Suppé: Link

When the master arrives

Alfred Eschwé has the reputation as one of the finest conductors worldwide for the repertoire of the Viennese king of waltz, Johann Strauß. Even though he is regularly guest at the leading European opera houses with other repertoire including a great variety of different epochs and styles, he is still mainly known particularly for his mastery of interpreting Strauß. This is why the Finnish National Opera was glad to invite him to conduct its new production of the Fledermaus, the possibly greatest operetta ever composed. In collaboration with stage director Marco Arturo Marelli, the new production of the Fledermaus in the Finnish capital will be presented with renowned soloists such as Alexandra Reinprecht, Michael Kraus, Claudia Göbl and Alexandru Badea. The premiere will be held on 28 November 2014. Further performances conducted by Alfred Eschwé on 4, 8, 10, 17 and 19 December 2014.

The Danube – Music along the blue river

With his waltz "An der schönen, blauen Donau", Johann Strauß left a composition of utmost popularity, put the central lifeline of Middle Europe into a musical picture and gave another inofficial anthem to Austria. However, this waltz is only one of the many musical pieces that follow the river Danube on its nearly 2900 kilometres from its well near the German Donaueschingen until its outfall into the Black Sea.

Alfred Eschwé, also a regular guest at the WDR radio orchestra in Cologne, put together a whole matinée programme that lets the allegedly "blue" river and the all in all ten states at its shore sound. Of course, Alfred Eschwé will once again present his own programme such as he has been doing for many years at his worldwide concerts of the sophisticated light music. That he is able to do also completely differently, can be experienced at the Maestro's opera performances, amongst others at the Hamburg state opera where he has regularly been invited as a guest conductor over the past 15 years. A pro both at the Alster and at the Danube!

Premiere at the Volksoper

Lortzing's masterful light opera "Der Wildschütz", central repertoire of the Volksoper, will be newly staged.