Why German casting wiz is joining Glyndebourne

Glyndebourne’s last chief exec came from running a London period-instrument orchestra, the one before from a London arts centre.

The new head on the cowpats comes from the heart of the process.

Sebastian F Schwarz is credited locally with much of the pizazz that has made the Theater an der Wien the best show in Vienna outside the Staatsoper.

He was number two at the ancient theatre, and his casting has been both young and daring. In addition to main-house duties, he set up a youth ensemble, a baroque voice competition and a university course.

This appointment could be interesting. Where previous Gly chiefs have operated under the landowner’s thumb, Schwartz is thought to have obtained guarantees of artistic independence. There would be no point, otherwise, for either side in him taking this job.sebastian schwarz

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He has received an enthusiastic endorsement from the music director, Robin Ticciati: ‘I am extremely excited about what Sebastian Schwarz will bring, especially his own personal artistic vision and his inspiring approach to what he believes opera can be in the 21st century.’

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  • After the magnificent Donizetti UK premiere of Poliuto, I hope this doesn’t mean an excess of baroque and counter tenors.

  • If you see the amazing programme that has been going on at Theater an der Wien over the last few years, and the true quality, and variety, of the productions, and of the really strong casting (very much Sebastian’s area), those who don’t know Sebastian’s work so well need have no worries about the quality and variety of repertoire that should be coming to Glyndebourne. This is an inspired appointment of a powerhouse from the opera world.

  • I totally agree with Robert King’s view. This can only be an exciting prospect for Glyndebourne and I am looking forward to innovative repertoire and interesting casting. I believe that Glyndebourne will be in safe hands.

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