The German mezzo-soprano, Christiane Iven, studied singing at the Academy of Music and Theater in Hamburg under Judith Beckmann. While a student she was honoured with a number of international competition prizes, including the first prize at the German Music Competition in Bonn in 1990 and participated in Lieder interpretation courses led by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau in Berlin.
Christiane Iven had an engagement as a lyric mezzo-soprano at the Bremen Theater from 1992 to 1996 and has been a member of the Mannheim National Theater since the 1996-1997 season. Guest performances include the Hamburg State Opera, the Leipzig Opera, the Bonn Opera and the Cologne Opera. She is now a member of the ensemble at the Staatsoper in Hannover. She started a very successful transition to the youthful-dramatic soprano field at this opera house singing the Countess (Le nozze di Figaro), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) and Marschallin (Der Rosenkavalier). Her interpretation of Emilia Marty in Janácek's The Makropulos Case under the direction of Luk Perceval received great critical acclaim. Her other important roles are Octavian (Rosenkavalier), the Composer (Ariadne auf Naxos), Gräfin Geschwitz in Alban Berg's Lulu and Charlotte in Massenet's Werther. Guest engagements have taken her to the Hamburg Staatsoper, the Leipzig Opera, the Bonn Opera and the Theater in Basel.
The versatile artist has also been extremely successful as concert and Lieder singer. Christiane Iven is a sought-after concert soloist in Germany and throughout Europe. She has concertized with ranking orchestras and conductors, such as the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields under Sir Neville Marriner (George Frideric Handel´s Jephtha and the 9th Symphony of L.v. Beethoven), John Eliot Gardiner (Walpurgisnacht of Mendelssohn), Helmuth Rilling (J.S. Bach´s B minor Mass (BWV 232)), Fabio Luisi and L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (Mozart masses), Hartmut Haenchen (symphonies of Gustav Mahler), Simone Young (Le marteau sans maître by Pierre Boulez), András Schiff and the Musikkollegium Winterthur (J.S. Bach St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244)), Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, NHK Symphony Orchstra Tokyo, Bamberger Symphoniker, NDR Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, and many others. Together with Thomas Quasthoff, she gave her much acclaimed debut in the Wiener Konzerthaus with Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch. Her last recitals in Amsterdam, Hitzacker, Herrenchiemsee and Ittingen received outstanding reviews. Accompagnied by Burkhard Kehring, she will sing selected works by Schumann, Messiaen and Strauss in Hannover in spring of 2008.
Christiane Iven has a particular love for Lieder. She gives frequent recitals and has made many broadcast recordings (including songs of Hugo Wolf and Richard Strauss and Arnold Schoenberg´s Pierrot lunaire). Several radio and CD recordings document her extensive repertoire. She made her CD debut with romantic and contemporary lieder that was released by Ars Musici, and a recording of Schubert's Mayrhofer Lieder on Naxos is currently in preparation. The young artist has also a number of radio productions with the NDR, WDR, and Radio Free Berlin to her credit.
Christiane Iven has worked frequently and engagedly together with Heinz Holliger, András Schiff, Marko Letonja, Jonathan Nott, Enoch zu Guttenberg and Marc Albrecht, to name a few, and has had guest performances at numerous music festivals, including the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Ludwigsburg Castle Festival, the Luzerner Festwochen as well as the Schwetzinger Festspiele.
In past seasons Christiane Iven continuously extended her repertoire and debuted as Marie in Alban Berg's Wozzeck, as Hanna Glawari in Léhar’s The Merry Widow and as Sieglinde in the Walküre. She was awarded the Lower Saxonian State Prize for her artistic accomplishments. At the Stuttgart State Opera, with which Christiane Iven will be closely connected for the next years, she will be heard as Didon in Les Troyens of Berlioz and as Agate in Freischütz this coming season.
Future plans include concerts with the Wesendonck-Lieder that she will interpret with the La Scala Orchestra under Riccardo Chailly and the RTVE in Madrid under Leopold Hager, Zemlinsky’s Lyrische Sinfonie with the SWR Orchester and Lothar Zagrosek, G. Mahler's Wunderhorn songs together with Matthias Goerne and Marc Albrecht in Lyon as well as stagings of Elias with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg under Heinz Holliger.
Christiane Iven is professor of voice at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in