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©Bria Kelly



Die britische Sopranistin Sarah Gilford war Finalistin des "BBC Cardiff Singer of the World 2021" und ist Absolventin des Opernstudios der Bayerischen Staatsoper. Sarah Gilford startet am Klagenfurt Stadttheater als Woglinde in Wagners "Götterdämmerung" in die neue Spielzeit, wo sie im März auch in Händels "Messias" im zu hören sein wird. Darüber hinaus gibt sie u.a. ihr Rollendebüt als Gouvernante in Isabelle Kettles neuer Inszenierung von Brittens "The Turn oft he Screw" am Theatre Royal in Bath und singt Beethovens „Neunte“ mit der Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini in Parma. Zu den Höhepunkten der letzten Spielzeiten zählen u.a. ihr Debüt als Dalinda in Händels "Ariodante" mit Il Pomo d'Oro, Mendelssohns "Elias" mit den Berliner Philharmonikern oder ihr Debüt als Sophie in "Werther" am Royal Opera House Covent Garden unter der Leitung von Antonio Pappano. Außerdem gab sie mit der Pianistin Ewa Danilewska ihr Debüt in der Wigmore Hall in London. In der Spielzeit 2021/2022 war sie Mitglied des Ensembles des Stadttheaters Klagenfurt, wo sie u.a. als Ortlinde in "Die Walküre", als Susanna in "Le Nozze di Figaro", als Sopran I in Rihms "Jakob Lenz" und als Gilda in "Rigoletto" debütierte. Zudem gab sie im Rahmen des Imogen Cooper Musical Trust Liederabende in Madrid, Rom und London. Davor war Sarah Gilford Mitglied des Opernstudios an der Bayerischen Staatsoper, wo sie die Titelrolle in Thomas' "Mignon" im Cuvilliés-Theater, Giannetta in "L'Elisir d'Amore", Taumännchen in "Hänsel und Gretel" und Barbarina in "Le Nozze di Figaro" sang. Sarah wird unterstützt durch die Kiri Te Kanawa Foundation, den Imogen Cooper Music Trust und dem Samling Institute for young artists. Johanna Herbst Artist Management vertritt Sarah Gilford im weltweiten General Management.

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©Martin Repplinger



Soprano Marie Smolka was born in Ostrava, Czech Republic. After completing her music studies, she embarked on her career as a freelance singer, performing at prestigious venues such as the Staatsoper Berlin, Oper Frankfurt, Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, Staatsoper Hannover, Grand Théâtre de Sarrebourg, Teatro Massimo Palermo, and Saarland State Theatre. Her repertoire spans the entire spectrum of the soprano range, including roles such as Susanna in "The Marriage of Figaro," Sophie in "Der Rosenkavalier," Gretel in "Hansel and Gretel," Nedda in "Pagliacci," Musetta in "La Bohème," Adele in "Die Fledermaus," and Leila in "The Pearl Fishers." She has collaborated with renowned conductors including Marc Albrecht, Cornelius Meister, Antonello Manacorda, Joanna Mallwitz, and Yoel Gamzou, and has worked with stage directors such as Marina Abramovic, Robert Carsen, Tobias Kratzer, Eva Maria Höckmeyer, Tatjana Gürbaca and Lydia Steier. From 2021 to 2023, Marie Smolka was engaged at the Theater Bremen, where she performed roles including Pamina in "The Magic Flute," Angel in Peter Eötvös' "Angels in America," and Poppea in "L'incoronazione di Poppea." Her portrayal of Nedda in "Pagliacci" at Theater Bremen earned her the title of "Young Artist 2022" by the magazine Opernwelt. In the 2022/23 season, she made her debut as Traviata in Marina Abramovic's "7 Deaths of Maria Callas" at the Koninklijkjes Theater in Amsterdam, in collaboration with the Bavarian State Opera Munich. Highlights of the current season include her debut as Mimi, Contessa and Simplicius ("Des Simplicius Simplicissimus Jugend" by Karl Amadeus Hartmann) in Innsbruck.

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Born in North Macedonia, Mezzo-Soprano Ema Nikolovska grew up in Toronto where she studied violin at The Glenn Gould School, before studying voice with Helga Tucker. She received her Master’s in Voice at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London, where she also completed the Opera Course. Ema was a BBC New Generation Artist from 2019-2022. In 2019 she won first prize at the International Vocal Competition in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Ferrier Loveday Song Prize (Kathleen Ferrier Awards), and was a prize-winner at the Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) International Auditions. In 2022 she became a recipient of the prestigious Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award. This season, Ema will perform at Munich´s new concert venue Bergson, make her debut with Munich Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Raphaël Pichon and sing the leading role in George Benjamin´s new opera "Picture a day like this" at the Royal Opera House in London. Recent highlights include her debut as Octavian in Strauss´"Rosenkavalier" at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin, Mozart’s "Coronation Mass" with Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg and Roberto González-Monjas at the Salzburg Festival, Schumann’s "Das Paradies und die Peri" and Mozart’s "Requiem" with the Staatskapelle Berlin and Marc Minkowski and Stravinsky’s "Pulcinella" with Musikkollegium Winterthur and Barbara Hannigan. A celebrated recitalist, this season Ema embarks on a solo recital tour of North America, including her debut at Carnegie’s Weill Hall. Elsewhere, Ema has performed at the Pierre Boulez Saal, Konzerthaus Berlin, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, London’s Wigmore Hall, and at the Schubertíada Vilabertran, Verbier, Gstaad, Aldeburgh, Leeds Lieder and Toronto Summer Music Festivals, collaborating with Malcolm Martineau, Wolfram Rieger, Andras Schiff, Graham Johnson, and Joseph Middleton, among others.

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©Meili Li



Standing out in opera, concert and song recitals alike with her colourful timbre, flawless voice, and remarkable receptivity, the young mezzo-soprano is critically acclaimed as a "voice that is something to look out for.” (Operawire). Yajie Zhang is a member of the ensemble at Oper Leipzig since the 2022/23 season. In Leipzig, she is appearing as Hänsel in Humperdinck's "Hänsel und Gretel", Suzuki in "Madama Butterfly", Page in Strauss' "Salome" and other roles. At the Opéra National de Paris, she appears in John Adams' "Nixon in China" under the baton of music director Gustavo Dudamel, alongside Renée Fleming and Thomas Hampson. Concert performances are taking her to Oxford, Helsinki, Berlin and the Naantali Festival. In May 2023, Yajie will appear in the world premiere of Donizetti's re-discovered opera "Dalinda" at the Berlin Konzerthaus where, in 2022, she had a critically acclaimed appearance in the lead role of Massenet's "Zanetto". Recent season highlights included Yajie Zhang's return to the Bayerische Staatsoper in Rossini's "La Cenerentola" and Frank Castorf's production of Braunfels' "Die Vögel", as well as appearances in the new productions of G.F. Haaas' opera "Thomas", in "Parsifal" by Richard Wagner, in Weber's "Der Freischütz" and "The Cunning Little Vixen" by Leoš Janáček. A member of the Young Singers Programme at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich since the 2020/21 season, she sang Dryade in Strauss’ "Ariadne auf Naxos", and Kitchen Boy in Dvořák's "Rusalka" among other roles. Yajie Zhang gave her opera debut as Maddalena in Verdi’s "Rigoletto" with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra at the Shanghai Oriental Art Centre. Since then, she has performed at Staatstheater Braunschweig, Theater Trier, and at the NCPA in Beijing, where she recently portrayed Nicklausse/Muse in Offenbach’s "Les Contes d‘Hoffmann" under Pinchas Steinberg. She returned to Beijing in the role of Cherubino in Mozart’s "Le Nozze di Figaro". As a recipient of fellowships from the Richard Wagner Foundation (2016) and the Lied Akademie Heidelberger Frühling (2019), she has performed song recitals at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Schleswig- Holstein Musikfestival, Berlin's Pierre Boulez Hall, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Hall and the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) in Beijing. An avid concert and oratorio singer, Yajie Zhang sang Beethoven’s "Symphony No. 9" with the China Philharmonic Orchestra under Yu Long at the Beijing Music Festival in 2019, followed by a spectacular jump-in with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and Jukka-Pekka Saraste with Mahler’s "Rückert Lieder". That same year, she appeared as a guest with the Shanghai Camerata under David Stern at the Shanghai Baroque Festival. She opened the 2020/21 season with concerts at the Bavarian Academy of the Fine Arts, performing works by Zemlinsky and Mahler alongside musicians of the Bavarian State Orchestra and Peter Hirsch. The young mezzo-soprano has received numerous awards at various competitions, including the 2018 DEBUT Classical Singing Competition, the 2019 song competition "Das Lied" in Heidelberg, the Stanisław Moniuszko Vocal Competition at the Teatr Wielki in Warsaw, and the International Opera Competition in Portofino, Italy. By 2017, she had already attracted international attention as the youngest contestant at the International Vocal Competition ’s-Hertogenbosch, where she was awarded the Grand Prix as well as the Opera and Junior Jury prizes. Born in the Anhui province of China, Yajie Zhang began her vocal studies in Shanghai, during which time she was also a member of the Zhou Xiao Yan Opera Centre. In 2020 she completed her studies in Hannover with Marek Rzepka and Justus Zeyen, complemented by master classes with Brigitte Fassbaender, Thomas Hampson, Roman Trekel, Wolfram Rieger, Burkhard Kehring, Hartmut Höll, and Thomas Quasthoff. Yajie Zhang is represented by Johanna Herbst Artist Management in worldwide general management.

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Noa Beinart was born in Tel Aviv and between 2020-2023 she was a member of the Ensemble at the Wiener Staatsoper. Previously, she was a member of the Opera Studio at the Bayerische Staatsoper and is a graduate of the Hanns Eisler in Berlin. This season, Noa will return to the Wiener Staatsoper as Gaea "Daphne" conducted by Sebastian Weigle, and she will make her debuts at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as 1st Magd in Christof Loy's new production of "Elektra" conducted by Sir Antonio Pappano and at the Opernhaus Zürich, where she will appear as Amastre in Handel's "Serse" and as Schwertleite "Die Walküre"; she will also make her debut with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as Erda in a concert performance of "Das Rheingold" conducted by Simone Young and she will return to the Bayerische Staatsoper as 1st Magd in "Elektra" and as Hannah in Tobias Kratzer's new production of "The Passenger" conducted by Vladimir Jurowski. Noa recently made her debut at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, Berlin as 1st Norn in "Götterdämmerung" in Dmitri Tcherniakov’s new production of Wagner's The Ring Cycle conducted by Christian Thielemann - elsewhere, Noa’s engagements have included Grimgerde in "Die Walküre" at the Opéra National de Paris conducted by Philippe Jordan and in the summer 2021 she made her debut at the Salzburg Festival, as 2nd Magd in "Elektra" conducted by Franz Welser-Möst and returned in summer 2022 as Dritte Dame in a new production of "Die Zauberflöte". Johanna Herbst Artist Management has taken over Noa Beinart's concert representation worldwide, please direct all other inquiries to Owl Artist Management.

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Elmar Hauser_credit Adrienne Meister_edi



Originally, Elmar Hauser did not intend to become a countertenor. It was only during his studies at the Winterthur Conservatory with David Thorner and Jane Thorner-Mengedoht that he made the transition from tenor to countertenor - a decision he has not regretted to this day. In 2021, he completed his bachelor's degree with distinction at the Zurich University of the Arts and later on his master's degree at the August Everding Theater Academy in Munich. The 2023/24 season brings several role and house debuts for Elmar Hauser. He can be heard at the Zurich Opera House in "Ein Sommernachtstraum" and as Hanno Buddenbrook in "Buddenbrooks" at the Theater Kiel. He also appears with the Lautten Compagney in a new staging of "Der Teufel im Lift" at the Neuköllner Oper in Berlin. In the 2020/21 season, Elmar Hauser could be heard in Bach's "St. John Passion" with the Finnish Baroque Orchestra at the Musiikkitalo Helsinki and made his successful debut as Michael in G.F. Haas' opera "Thomas" at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin: " A real revelation: the amazing young countertenor Elmar Hauser", can be read about him in the Salzburger Nachrichten newspaper. Futhermore, he spent a lot of time working on his artistic projects, including an interdisciplinary project on ecological issues together with the OTTER OTTER OTTER collective, his song program "Night and Dreams", as well as the opera production "Händel kurz vor Dienstschluss - Opern im Archivkarton" in collaboration with the Theater zur Waage Elgg. In the past, he has sung the male lead role in "Orfeo ed Euridice", the title roles in "Ariodante" by Handel and "Il Giasone" by F. Cavalli as well as Prince Kürtchen in the children's opera "Die Gänsemagd" by Iris Ter Schiphorst. He performed at the Diademus Festival for Early Music, the Liedrezital Zürich (together with his accompanist Daniela Baumann) and at the Festival Les Riches Heures du Valère in Sion. Elmar Hauser is a scholarship holder of the Friedl Wald Foundation and the Johann Adolph Hasse Foundation Munich.

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©Alan Ovaska



Gabriel Rollinson is praised for his "robustly virile" sound (Süddeutsche Zeitung) and his "attractive, towering stage presence" (Opera News). English born and of German and American descent, Gabriel Rollinson studied at the Manhattan School of Music, the August Everding Theatre Academy/University of Music in Munich and at the University of Music Karlsruhe. He was a member of the Opera Studios at Opera Frankfurt and the Bavarian State Opera, the latter with a scholarship from the New York Opera Foundation in the 22/2023 Season. In 2019, Gabriel Rollinson joined the Heidelberger Frühling Lied Academy and in 2022, won the Polish Song Prize at the 11th Internationalen Stanisław Moniuszko Competition. In 2021, he joined the Young Singers Project at the Salzburg Festival. He has premiered numerous works including the role of Arturo Cidre in Micha Hamel's "Caruso a Cuba" for the Dutch National Opera and the role of Thron in Elisabeth Naske's "Vom Stern, der nicht leuchten konnte" for the Salzburg Festival. Concert and Lieder performances brought him to the George Enescu Festival, the Lake Constance Festival, the Eppaner Liedsommer and to the BR Radio, with which has recorded multiple albums. He has worked with conductors such as Vladimir Jurowski, Otto Tausk, Lothar Zagrosek, Ivan Repušić, and Sebastian Weigle and directors such as Barbora Haráková, Johannes Erath, and Olivier Tambosi. In 2022, Gabriel Rollinson made his debut at the Bregenz Festival as Idreno in Haydn's "Armida" and, in the 2022/23 Season in addition to his first appearances at the Bavarian State Opera, made his debut at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in G.F. Haas’ opera “Thomas”. In collaboration with pianist Hartmut Höll and SWR Radio/CPO Records, he recorded his first Art Song album with music by American composer William Grant Still. In the 23/2024 Season, upcoming highlights include Rascal (“Der Mond” by C. Orff at the Bayerische Staatsoper, and V. Williams´ “Fantasia on Christmas Carols" and Finzi´s "In terra pax” with Netherlands Radio Stichting Omroep Muziek conducted by Marcus Creed.

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Hanni - 3
©Christoph Bombart

"Johanna Herbst Artist Management" focuses on a strategic, contemporary and long-term career development, which includes a balance between private life and career - focused on the personal needs of the artists. These core values evolved through my experiences in the cultural sector in the last years. After two years at Centre Stage Artist Management, I worked as an Artist Manager at Künstlersekretariat am Gasteig in Munich from 2017. Other obligations of the past years were several summers in the artistic administration of the Salzburg Festival, as a trainee in the artist and repertoire department of Deutsche Grammophon, as well as many years of support for the company Unitel in marketing tasks. At the Theaterakademie August Everding, I have been teaching as a lecturer for "Professionalization" since 2018.



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