The Swiss lyric tenor, Jörg Dürmüller, studied violin and voice at the Winterthur Conservatoire in Switzerland with Ruth Binder (1977-1982), and with a scholarship of the Migros-Genossenschafts-Bund at the Academy of Music and Theatre in Hamburg with Naan Pöld, Hans Kagel and Hertha Werner (1982-1987). He attended master-classes given by Edith Mathis, Christa Ludwig and Hermann Prey.
Jörg Dürmüller's first opera-engagement led him in 1987 to the Bielefeld City Theatre, where he was a member of the ensemble for five years. From 1995 to 1997 he was engaged as the first tenor at the Brunswick State Theatre under Kammersängerin Brigitte Fassbaender. He appeared also at the State Opera of Hamburg, and at the Theatre in Revier Gelsenkirchen. In 1996 he appeared as a guest at the Comic Opera Berlin in the role of Fernando in Così fan tutte produced by Harry Kupfer, and at the National Theatre of Braunschweig as Andres in Wozzeck by Alban Berg. In 2002 and 2003 he sang the role of Bajazete in George Frideric Handelís Tamerlano also at the Opera Comique Berlin directed by David Alden.
From 1997-1998 to 1999-2000 Jörg Dürmüller has been a permanent member of the ensemble of the Vienna Volksoper, where he very successfully appeared in the roles of Tamino in The Magic Flute (Mozart), Ferrando in Cosi fan tutte (Mozart), Ottavio in Don Giovanni (Mozart), Count Zedlau in Wiener Blut (J. Strauss), Alfred in Die Fledermaus (J. Strauss), Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola (Rossini) and Fenton in Nicolaiís Lustigen Weibern von Windsor and Falstaff (Verdi), and Châteauneuf in Zar und Zimmermann by Lortzing. In addition to his numerous concert engagements he is now working there as a guest tenor. In 2001 he gave guest performances at the Opera National du Rhin Strasbourg in the part of the Steuermann in the Wagner-Opera Der fliegende Holländer directed by Philippe Arlaud. Furthermore he appeared as a guest tenor at the opera houses of Hamburg, Montpellier, Leipzig, Cologne, Sevilla, Strasbourg and at the Teatro Real in Madrid where he made his debut in 1998-1999 as Walter von der Vogelweide in Tannhäuser (Wagner) directed by Werner Herzog. In June 1999 he toured in Japan as Alfred in a Fledermaus production by the Vienna Volksoper. In February 2002 he sang the title-role of the Weber-opera Abu Hassan in Eindhoven conducted by Jan Willem de Vriend. In May 2002 he sang the title-role of the opera Abu Hassan (C.M. v. Weber) under Bruno Weil in a WDR CD-production. In 2003-2004 he made his role debut as Xerxes (G.F. Handel) and Belmonte at the Schwerin State Opera House.
Jörg Dürmüllerís voice has a remarkable range of characters at itís disposal. In 2004 he sang with overwhelming success the role of Georg (Erik) in the first recording of Richard Wagner's original version (Paris 1841) of The Flying Dutchman under Bruno Weil, to great acclaim in the specialist music journals. Ludwig Robeller wrote in his review published by the Bavarian State Opera House Munich: "Jörg Dürmüller, one of the stars of the ancient-music-scene, sang with a splendid technique and articulation, marvellously pure high pitch - a brilliant performance of the first order, the best Erik I have ever heard." In 2006 he very successfully appeared as Belmonte at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival under Alessandro de Marchi, who subsequently engaged Jörg Dürmüller for concerts and a CD production of G.F. Handel`s Il Trionfo del Tempo. This production was shown at the Händel Festival Halle 2007, in Bologna and in Torino. Also in 2007 he sang the role of Ottavio in Don Giovanni at the distinguished Herrenchiemsee Festival under Enoch zu Guttenberg (TV recording by BR). In the beginning of 2008 he appeared as Narraboth at the Teatro Regio di Torino and in the State Opera House Braunschweig he will give his scenic debut as Erik/ "The Flying Dutchman".
But still of greater importance is Jörg Dürmüllerís career in concert and oratorio singing. Within this area he appeared in the centres of music life of Switzerland and Germany in a versatile repertoire and made guest appearances in Paris and Brussels, in Pesaro and at the Festival Weeks for Ancient Music in Mannheim. In 1989 he undertook a very successful tour to Russia, with appearances in Moscow, Leningrad and Vilnius (Wilna). He also made a successful tour to Spain. As a concert singer he has gained a particularly good reputation especially in singing J.S. Bachís Evangelistís parts. This led him to most of the major concert-halls and festivals at home and abroad. Jörg Dürmüller performed at venues and festivals such as Epidaurus Festival Athens, Festwochen Alter Musik Innsbruck, Bach-Fest Leipzig, BBC Proms at Royal Albert Hall London, Johann Strauss Festival London, Ludwigsburger Schloßfestspiele, Auditorio Nacional de España Madrid, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées Paris, Théâtre du Châtelet Paris, Rheingau Musik Festival, Santa Cecilia Rome, Philharmony Sao Paulo, Schleswig-Holstein-Musikfestival, Schwetzinger Festspiele, Summer Festival Tokyo, Musikverein Vienna, Wratislava Cantans, Würzburger Mozartfest, Junifestwochen Zürich, Festival Mitte Europa, as well as at the Festivals of Cremona, Montpellier, Beaune or St. Moritz. In Schwetzingen he made guest appearance in 1986 with the Ensemble of Hamburg State Opera in the premiere of the opera Die Leiden des Jungen Werthers by H.J. von Bose (in three small parts). In 1991 he could be heard in Innsbruck as Fracasso in La Finta Semplice by Mozart, in 1993 as Eusimao in Monteverdiís Ritorno d'Ulisse in patria. He June 2004 he appeared in Essen as Georg in Der fliegende Holländer.
During his career in opera and concert Jörg Dürmüller worked under distinguished conductors as Howard Arman, Bertrand de Billy, Herbert Blomstedt, Christoph Eschenbach, Diego Fasolis, Reinhard Goebel, Wolfgang Gönnenwein, Thomas Hengelbrock, Michael Hofstetter, Christopher Hogwood, René Jacobs, Robert King, Ton Koopman, Alessandro de Marchi, Vaclav Neumann, Christof Prick, Karl-Anton Rickenbacher, Helmuth Rilling, Dennis Russell Davies, Peter Schreier, Hiroshi Wakasugi, Jörg-Peter Weigle, Sebastian Weigle, Bruno Weil, Jan Willem de Vriend Simone Young and Hans Zender.
In 2002-2003 Jörg Dürmüller took part in different G.F. Handel- and J.S. Bach tours under Ton Koopman, which led him for example to Paris, Rome, Madrid, Lisboa, to the Händel Festspiele Halle and to the Festivals of Budapest, Istanbul, Schwetzingen and other places. A special highlight in 2002 was the revival of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's Matthew Passion with the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir under Ton Koopman. The Matthew Passion was rediscovered in Kiew as a part of the archive of the Berliner Sing-Akademie. The passion was recorded on CD by the ORF (Austrian Broadcasting Company) in Vienna. He sang the arias and the evangelist's part. He took part in new projects under Ton Koopman in 2003 and 2004, as for example in a Europe tour (Paris, Lisbon, Rome, Madrid etc.) with J.S. Bach's St. John Passion (BWV 245) and in a concert tour with Mozart's opera Zaide. In 2003-2004 season he also appeared in various new projects under Wolfgang Gönnenwein, Diego Fasolis, Robert King, Enoch zu Guttenberg, Steven Sloane and Jan Willem de Vriend. In December 2006, he joined a USA tour under the baton of Ton Koopman with works by J.S. Bach, which also led him to the Carnegie Hall in New York. In 2008 he will sing several concerts of G.F. Handelís Messiah with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.
Jörg Dürmüller also is a passionate and estimated Lieder singer. His preferential repertoire are the lieder cycles Winterreise and Die Schöne Müllerin by Franz Schubert as well as Die Schöne Magelone by Johannes Brahms and Lieder by P. Tchaikovsky or H. Wolf. In February 2002 he sang for the first time also the orchestra version of the Winterreise by Hans Zender under the conductor Peter Hirsch.
Jörg Dürmüller could be heard in various Swiss and in West German television and broadcasting recordings. For example in a recording of the As-Major-Mass (F. Schubert) by the Swiss televison in June 1999. In August 1999 he sang the role of Erwin in Erwin und Elmire (J.F. Reichardt) in a radio-production of the WDR (West German Radio) directed by Andreas Spering. In September 2000 he sang the part of Carlo Murbruner in a recording of the opera Das kommt davon - oder- wenn Sardakai auf Reisen geht (E. Krenek) by Deutschland Radio Berlin. Under Bruno Weil he recorded a CD of the Bonner Beethoven Cantata (Franz Liszt) by the WDR. In April 2001 he appeared in an ARD-television production of The Creation (Haydn) conducted by Enoch zu Guttenberg.
Various CD recordings have been published -amongst others- by Virgin Classics (Bruckner: Missa Solemnis / Karl-Anton Rickenbacher), Harmonia Mundi (Monteverdi: Il Ritorno díUlisse in Patria / René Jacobs), Deutsche Grammophon (Double-CD Johann David Heinichen: Beatus Vir and others / Reinhard Goebel), Orfeo International Music Munich (Haas: Vyvolená op.8/ Dennis Russell Davies) and in 1999 by Erato (J.S. Bach: Complete Cantatas Vol. 8 / Ton Koopman). A further CD with cantatas of J.S. Bach Complete Cantatas Vol. 14 conducted by Ton Koopman was recorded for Erato in March 2001. It was published in summer 2003 on the lable Challenge Classics. The recording of Complete Cantatas Vol. 19 was realized in autumn 2003. Under Bruno Weil Jörg Dürmüller recorded a CD of the Bonner Beethoven Cantata (Franz Liszt) at the WDR. In May 2002 he sang the title-role of the opera Abu Hassan (C.M. v. Weber) also under Bruno Weil in a WDR CD-production. A further CD production at the WDR followed in June 2002 with Jörg Dürmüller in the role of Fenton in Die Lustigen Weiber Von Windsor (O. Nicoalai) conducted by Helmuth Froschauer. In March 2005 he sang also with great success the part of the Evangelist in a DVD- and CD recording of J.S. Bachís St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244) under the baton of Ton Koopman. Other recent CD productions are: F.v. Flotow's Alessandro Stradella (title role) under the baton of Helmuth Froschauer, Lieder on Ringelnatz settings and as a highlight the first recording of R. Wagner's original version of Der Fliegende Hollaender (role: Georg, which later became Eric) under Bruno Weil with the Cappella Coloniensis playing on historic instruments. This CD was released by the WDR. In 2007 the CD production of Ernst Krenekís opera Sardakai with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra and Jörg Dürmüller singing the male leading role of Carlo was honoured with the distinguished ECHO-Award. The CD production of Franz v. Suppéís Die schöne Galathée under Bruno Weil with Jörg Dürmüller in the leading role of Pygmalion was awarded the "Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik."
Jörg Dürmüller is represented in Opera and Concert by:
KulturKontor / Regine Dierse, Kollwitzring 9, D-22115 Hamburg
Tel.:+49 40 35719380; Email: KulturKontor@t-online.de