For more than 400 years, the complex art form of opera has fascinated people from many different cultural backgrounds. Its direct, immediate presence and the way it combines poetic language and musical composition to be expressed by the human voice awaken curiosity, the imagination and emotions. But opera also holds up a mirror to the world and human existence.
Melanie Diener, the internationally acclaimed soprano from Waiblingen, and the American baritone Thomas Hampson, one of the most legendary singers of our time, have joined with the city of Waiblingen in creating the International Opera Workshop and invite the best young talents to Waiblingen to take part.
The International Opera Workshop is for outstandingly talented young singers from Germany and abroad who are on the verge of entering the profession after their studies. Those wishing to participate can apply online.
Altogether 10-12 participants will be selected on the basis of excellence as demonstrated by samples of their work, training and references. They will work with Melanie Diener and Thomas Hampson for six days in mostly public masterclasses and then take part in a final concert with the orchestra Württembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen conducted by Vlad Iftinca.
As fringe activities, the participants, who will reside with host families in the region, will give small performances at a number of public locations with the aim of promoting community involvement, encounters and intercultural exchange.
The opera workshop aims to be widely inclusive, with the entire city serving as a stage. Schools are invited to attend events to introduce young people to the operatic art form. The goal is to get a young audience interested by allowing them a “peek through the keyhole”. The masterclasses will be streamed live on the International Opera Workshop website (www.internationale-opernwerkstatt-waiblingen.de) and on those of Melanie Diener (www.melanie-diener.de) and Thomas Hampson (www.thomashampson.com).
The International Opera Workshop Waiblingen takes place annually. It brings the city into focus as a musical hub of outstanding significance in the Stuttgart region and beyond and has established the Bürgerzentrum theatre as an attractive venue for the best young artists and rising stars of the opera world.
The final concert with Melanie Diener, Thomas Hampson and all course participants together with the Württembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen under Vlad Iftinca will take place on October 8, 2022, in the Ghibellinensaal at the Bürgerzentrum Waiblingen.
The city of Waiblingen, with its population of around 56,000 people, is a major economic, cultural and educational centre in the Stuttgart region, one of the most economically powerful parts of Germany. Situated on the Rems river, Waiblingen boasts a picturesque old town with a Mediterranean atmosphere, the idyllic Talaue landscape park – a recreational area in the heart of the city – and outstanding art and culture venues such as the Galerie Stihl Waiblingen and the Bürgerzentrum Waiblingen.
The Bürgerzentrum Waiblingen, located directly before the gates of the historic old town in the middle of the Talaue park, hosts musical, theatrical, literary and dance events. Its concert and theatre programmes with artists of national and international stature put it among the best-known cultural venues in Southern Germany.