The German contralto, Ruth Michaelis, was trained by Hans Beltz and Jeanne Robert in Berlin, as well as by Anna Bahr Mildenburg in Munich.
Ruth Michaelis made her debut in 1932 at the Stadttheater of Halberstadt, to which she belonged until 1935. She sang then at the Stadttheater of Cottbus (1935-1937), at the Staatsoper of Stuttgart (1937-1938) and at Stadttheater of Augsburg (1938-1939). In 1937 she appeared in Stuttgart in the premiere of the operetta Monika by Nico Dostal. In 1939 she came it to the Münchner Staatsoper. Here she had a very successful career for more than twenty years until 1961. In 1942 she appeared at the Salzburg Festival. Here she sang Kartenaufschlägerin in Arabella (1942-1943), Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro (1946-1947), and soloist in the Mozart Requiem (1946) and in the Coronation Mass. She also appeared in Bordeaux, Lisbon, Barcelona, Rome and London.
Ruth Michaelis’ big stage roles were: Dorabella in Così fan tutte, Marthe in Faust by Charles Gounod, Suzuki in Madame Butterfly, Floßhilde in Der Ring des Nibelungen and Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck.
After conclusion of her singing career, Ruth Michaelis worked as a teacher in Munich, since 1956 Professor at the National Opera School of Istanbul. In 1968 she taught singing at the University of Florida. Finally she was employed as a teacher in Santa Barbara, California. In the USA she was also active as outstanding opera director on the stage as in the concert hall. She was highly estimated singer, particularly as Bach interpreter.
Recordings: DGG and Remington (Weihnachts-Oratorium (BWV 248) by J.S. Bach), on Lyrichord (Bach Cantatas), Vox (Concert Arias of Mozart) and Nixa. On Melodram she sings Magdalene in a complete recording of Meistersinger.