The Austriam mezzo-soprano, Angelika Kirchschlager, studied piano at the Mozarteum. Upon graduation from the Musisches Gymnasium in Salzburg, she enrolled at the Vienna Music Academy in 1984, where she studied with Walter Berry.
North America and the Far East, Angelika Kirchschlager is at home on the stages of the world’s most famous opera houses as well as on concert and recital stages.
Angelika Kirchschlager began the 1999-2000 season with appearances at the Vienna State Opera in Idomeneo and her debut at the Teatro alla Scala in Don Giovanni, conducted by Riccardo Muti. She also made her debut at the Festival of Orange, France, in Les Contes d’Hoffmann and a highly acclaimed Bavarian State Opera debut in Der Rosenkavalier. The season also featured a concert at London’s Barbican Centre with the London Symphony Orchestra and Sir Colin Davis, and performances in Japan of J.S. Bach’s B Minor Mass (BWV 232) under the baton of Seiji Ozawa. Kirchschlager has also worked with such esteemed conductors as Bertrand de Billy, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Christopher Hogwood, James Levine, Kurt Masur, Kent Nagano, Seiji Ozawa, Kurt Sanderling, Peter Schneider and Horst Stein.
Angelika Kirchschlager opened the 2000-2001 opera season at the Vienna State Opera in Gianni Schicchi, followed by a new production of Wilfried Hiller’s Peter Pan and, in March, performances of Le Nozze di Figaro and Palestrina. During the season, she traveled to Tokyo with the Vienna State Opera for performances of The Merry Widow, and returned to the Bavarian State Opera in Munich in Cosi fan Tutte and one of her favorite roles, Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier.
As a celebrated recitalist and concert artist, Angelika Kirchschlager performed throughout Europe and the USA in the 2000-2001 season. After a Rossini/Ravel program at London’s Wigmore Hall in November 2000, she traveled to Strasbourg for performances of Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, a concert she repeated with the same orchestra at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. That fall also included performances of the Mozart Requiem in Rome, with the late Giuseppe Sinopoli conducting. With pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, she sang a Schubert/Gustav Mahler/Mozart program in Lisbon and at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. Kirchschlager’s first performance in 2001 was at Avery Fisher Hall in New York, singing Mozart and Ravel with the New York Philharmonic conducted by André Previn. A long-standing working relationship with conductor Gerard Schwarz took her back to Seattle for G. Mahler concerts with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, and she also sang four performances of the J.S. Bach's B Minor Mass (BWV 232) with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Other concert and recital engagements in the 2000-2001 season included performances in Bordeaux, Berlin, Madrid, London, Vienna, Paris and Liverpool, and at the Salzburg Easter Festival.
Angelika Kirchschlager makes her Carnegie Hall debut on February 9 in a performance with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. For the balance of the 2001-2002 season, the singer’s engagements include performances with her home company, the Vienna State Opera, of Charles Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette, Die Fledermaus, Der Rosenkavalier, Le Nozze di Figaro and Cosi fan Tutte. She will also sing Le Nozze di Figaro at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Der Rosenkavalier at the Opera Bastille in Paris, Le Nozze di Figaro at both Teatro alla Scala in Milan and the Ravenna Festival. She sang chamber concerts in Barbican Centre in London and the Théâtre des Champs Elysées in Paris, as well as an all-Schubert concert at Cité de la Musique in Paris. Earlier this season she sang performances of Der Rosenkavalier and The Merry Widow at the Vienna State Opera, followed by a European concert tour with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra that took her to Berlin, Amsterdam, Lucerne, Vienna, Strasbourg, Friedrichshafen, Aschaffenburg and Düsseldorf. She also returned to the USA for performances of The Merry Widow with the San Francisco Opera, with Donald Runnicles conducting, and a recital of Hugo Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch in Berkeley.
In 2002, Angelika Kirchschlager will embark on an important new project - creating the title role in the world premiere of Nicholas Maw’s opera Sophie’s Choice, to have its premiere at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in London in December. Maw’s opera is based on American writer William Styron’s best selling novel, made into an Oscar-winning film with Meryl Streep as Sophie. The title role is being designed for Kirchschlager’s voice, and the premiere production will be staged by Trevor Nunn, with Sir Simon Rattle conducting.
Angelika Kirchschlager has just recorded a new disc of Bach arias with the Venice Baroque Orchestra, led by Andrea Marcon, featuring violinist Giuliano Carmignola. Her most recent release When Night Falls – a collection of classical and popular lullabies dedicated to her son – recently won Germany’s ECHO 2000 Music Award for Best Song Recording of the Year. Her discography for the Sony Classical label also includes her highly acclaimed solo debut recording of lieder by Alma Mahler, G. Mahler and Erich Korngold, and a complete recording of Felix Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Claudio Abbado and the Berlin Philharmonic.
Angelika Kirchschlager is the proud mother of a son - who inspired her to record When Night Falls - and she resides with her family in Vienna.