The next German Ring conductor will be British

The next German Ring conductor will be British


norman lebrecht

April 12, 2016

Uwe Eric Laufenberg, who’s directing Parsifal at Bayreuth this summer, has a day job as Intendant at Wiebaden, where he has just announced a Ring cycle for next season.

Laufenberg will direct the four operas.

The conductor is Alexander Joel, 45, formerly music director at Braunschweig.

alexander joel


  • Hanna Nahan says:

    Alexander Joel is American of German heritage (and Billy Joel’s brother). Do you even bother to think before posting?

  • Peter says:

    What is this post exactly about? A professional conductor was born in Britain and has a British passport? What is the relevance of that?

  • John says:

    Actually the next German Ring conductor is British – but it’s Justin Brown who launches the new Ring in Karlsruhe this July, four months before the Wiesbaden production opens!!

    • Max Grimm says:

      Actually the next German Ring conductor is German – it’s Ulf Schirmer who launches the new Ring in Leipzig three weeks from now, May 5th to May 8th.

  • Alexander Joel says:

    Hi everybody, Just to clear everything up- I am a British and German citizen, having been born in London, with a British mother and a German father, and yes, I am making my debut in the US this month having never conducted there before. I am no direct relation to Emmanuel or Nicolas Joel, although somewhere along the line we are distant relatives as there is apparently only one Joel family. To confuse things even more, Nicolas Joel and I worked together doing a production of La Wally at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in 2005!

  • Alexander Joel says:

    Hi everyone, to clear things up In the rather confusing nationality issue: my father was German, my mother is British, I was born in London, and have a British and German passport, although I only got the German one when I was 18. I grew up mainly in London and Vienna (where I did my studies), meaning I also have a sort of Viennese side to me. Am no direct relation to Nicolas or Emmanuel Joel. And yes, I am giving my US debut this month in Boston, having never conductors in the US before. Hope to have cleared things up! Best regards, Alexander Joel

  • Anon says:

    What passport did Wagner actually hold? Saxonian? Swiss? Bavarian? Walhalla? Nibelheim?

    • Max Grimm says:

      While there is some debate about his later years, most will agree on Wagner having held a passport of the Kingdom of Saxony and later the German Empire. It is said that some however, such as a prolific British cultural commentator, are convinced that Richard Wagner had dual citizenship, maintaining a passport of both, the 4th and the 5th Circle of Hell, while also having been granted a courtesy visa to Hades.

  • Adele Strauss says:

    Sounds a lot like Maestro Joel! All the best for the Ring Cycle and your Amerucan debut!