Berlin composer, 58, dies during opera rehearsals

Berlin composer, 58, dies during opera rehearsals


norman lebrecht

February 08, 2017

In the midst of Deutsche Oper rehearsals of his opera DIDO, a companion piece to Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, the composer Michael Hirsch has died. He was 58.

Born in Munich, Hirsch moved to Berlin in 1981, writing several operas for the German circuit. He was also a stage performer, a member of  the Freyer-Ensemble.

DIDO continues its run tomorrow. The Deutsche Oper website makes no mention of the composer’s sudden and unexpected death.




  • Stefan Treddel says:

    Died in rehearsal? The premiere was on January 28th and tomorrow is the 5th performance.
    So it is not sheduled to open tomorrow… A simple glance at the Deutsche Oper homepage would have provided the info.
    This is a sort of orbituary and it would be fitting to at least have all the information correct.

  • John Borstlap says:

    A Klangkünstler on the right moral side of postwar German history.

  • J Scott Morrison says:

    Not to be confused with American composer Michael Hersch.

  • Chris says:

    The Deutsche Oper Berlin website does now carry a detailed obituary on its ‘Aktuelles’ page, which presumably took a while to appear because of the totally unexpected nature of the composer’s death. I’m afraid your previous correspondent is correct to say that Mr Hirsch did not pass away mid-rehearsals but after his work had been premiered, which of course does not make the fact of his death any less upsetting.