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In a tribute to Nikolaus Bachler, who has stepped down after 13 years and 150 productions as artist director of the Bavarian State Opera, Munich culture editor Robert Braunmüller maintains that no opera leader since Gerard Mortier has done more to revitalise the art.
His signature singers were Jonas Kaufmann, Anja Harteros, Christian Gerhaher, Hanna-Elisabeth Müller, Tara Erraught and more.
His conductor of choice was Kirill Petrenko.
And his assistants have gone on to major positions in the opera world. Viktor Schoner is in charge of Stuttgart Opera, Florian Scholz is chief at Berne, where the Munich dramaturg Rainer Karlitschek joins him as director of opera.