Daniel Barenboim resigns from director role at Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin

06 January 2023
By Ellie Palmer
Barenboim explained in a statement on social media that he had made the decision as a result of his deteriorating health

After more than 30 years, Daniel Barenboim has resigned as General Music Director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin.

He released a statement online explaining his decision:

"Unfortunately, my health has deteriorated significantly over the past year. I can no longer provide the level of performance that is rightly demanded of a general music director. Therefore, I ask for your understanding that I am giving up this position as of 31 January 2023. I ask the Senator for Culture to terminate the contract between us on that date.

"Since 1992 I have served as General Music Director of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin. The years have inspired us musically and personally in every respect. I believe that the Staatsoper and I have been very fortunate for each other. I am particularly happy and proud that the Staatskapelle has chosen me as its principal conductor for life. We have become a musical family over the years and will remain so. I hold all the members of the Staatskapelle in high esteem, even those who have since left. But I also express my admiration for the singers, the members of the chorus and all the other staff of the State Opera, especially my personal assistant Antje Werkmeister.

"I was particularly pleased that the Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel and the President of the Bundestag Wolfgang Schäuble accompanied me so wonderfully. I also thank the Senator for Culture Klaus Lederer, who stood by me even in difficult times.

"Of course, I will remain closely connected to music - as long as I live - and am prepared to continue to conduct in the future, also and especially the Staatskapelle Berlin."

Barenboim had previously announced back in October 2022 that he was taking a step back from performing due to health reasons, although he soon returned to the stage before the end of the year.

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Main image: © Paul Schirnhofer/DG