German opera house clamps down on critics

German opera house clamps down on critics


norman lebrecht

February 23, 2019

The magazine Opernfreund has ceased reviewing at Wiesbaden after what it describes as intolerable pressures from the opera house director, Uwe Laufenberg.

Read here.

UPDATE: The Slippedisc outcry seems to have worked. A notice on the site says the issue has been resolved.


  • Ray says:

    The comment has apparently be pulled from the website.

  • Lausitzer says:

    This text has already been deleted and replaced by a short remark that “soon reports about current performances will appear here again”.

    Subject for the now removed rant was a written statement by Laufenberg that they want to protect themselves against the “very emotional and offending reviews from Dirk Schauß” by not issuing free tickets anymore. Which is only uncommon in as far as they openly stated it, instead of simply saying that no free seats are available, as it is the usual practice in such (rather frequent) cases.

    In fact no one locks out critics. They could simply go to the box office and buy a ticket like everyone (well, to some degree…) else. Why do they demand, and get, privileges at all?

    • V.Lind says:

      What privilege? Critics get tickets of entry to go to work. Do you pay to go to work?

    • Florian Kaspar says:

      But here’s the catch: Mr. Schauß never received free tickets in the first place nor did he ask for them – he always paid for them. Both onstage and online, Mr. Laufenberg tries to twist the plot and implies that Mr. Schauß has been some sort of a freeloader.

  • Mike Schachter says:

    The link does not seem to connect to the right article, but the headings seems to suggest that some German customs, from the Kaiser to the Stasi, are doing well.

  • Carlos says:

    It seems that Mr. Laufenberg does not like criticism…
    I remember, years ago, at the Vienna Staatsoper, his angry face while he was being praised with a (well deserved) symphony of boos from the audience, in honor of his stupid regie of Elektra.

  • a colleague says:

    “Dieser Konflikt konnte schon nach wenigen Tagen beigelegt werden.” the conflict has been resolved.