Claudia Mahnke is one of today’s most important mezzo-sopranos, recognized internationally in the recent seasons for such performances as her Brangäne and Fricka at Bayreuth Festival, Judith in Bartok‘s Bluebeard’s Castle at Staatsoper Hamburg, as well as her Didon in Les Troyens and Selika in L’Africaine at Oper Frankfurt.
Ms. Mahnke begins the 2018/19 season as Magdalene in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg at the Bayerische Staatsoper. Following that she appears at Oper Frankfurt to perform in Rusalka, Hänsel und Gretel, Wozzeck and Walküre. She will also be presented as Judith in a new production of Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle at the Staatsoper Stuttgart, and she will sing Waltraute in Götterdämmerung at the Staatsoper Hamburg, Kundry in Parsifal at the Ravello Festival, and Walküre-Fricka with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Further engagements this season will bring her to Munich to sing Mahler’s Lied von der Erde and Symphony No.8 with the Münchner Philharmoniker, which she will also perform in Bregenz under the baton of Kirill Petrenko, while in Tokyo she will perform Waldtaube in Schönberg’s Gurre-Lieder, and in Bern Brahms‘ Alto Rhapsody.
Among Ms. Mahnke’s notable engagements in the 2017/18 season were her potrayal of Kundry in a new production of Parsifal at the Staatsoper Hamburg, Judith in Bluebeard’s Castle at Oper Frankfurt, where she also appeared as Selika in Meyerbeer‘s L‘Africaine and as Fricka in Rheingold. Also in 2017/18, she sang an impressive Iokaste in Stravinsky‘s Oedipus Rex at the Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden.
In the 2016/17 season Ms. Mahnke performed at the Bayerische Staatsoper München in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, and at the Staatsoper Hamburg in Bluebeard’s Castle. In autumn 2015, she gave concerts in Tokyo (Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra) and was a guest performer at the Oper Stuttgart, singing the role of Herodias in Salome. In summer 2013, Ms. Mahnke made her debut in Bayreuth under Kirill Petrenko in the new Ring (Fricka/Rheingold, Fricka/Walküre, Waltraute/Walküre,Waltraute/Götterdämmerung, 2nd Norn/Götterdämmerung).
Claudia Mahnke has given many guest performances at numerous international auspices, such as the Komische Oper Berlin (Composer in Ariadne auf Naxos), at the San Francisco Opera (Dorabella in Così fan tutte, Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos), at the Opera National de Lyon (Dorabella), in Seoul with the Deutsche Oper Berlin (Cherubino), at the Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe (Le Prince Charmant in Cendrillon), at the Aalto Theater in Essen and the Oper Köln (Octavian), at the Ruhrtriennale under Kirill Petrenko (Brangäne), at the Bayerischen Staatsoper München (Palestrina, I Puritani), at the Teatro Real Madrid (Adriano in Rienzi) and in autumn 2014 at Los Angeles Opera as Judith in Bluebeard’s Castle.
Ms. Mahnke has been a member of the ensemble at Oper Frankfurt since the beginning of the 2006/2007. During her time in Frankfurt she has performed, amongst other roles, the part of Magdalena (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg), Charlotte (Werther), Bianca (Florentinische Tragödie), Lucretia (The Rape of Lucretia), Conception (L'heure espagnole), Cherubino, Silla (Palestrina), Miranda (The Tempest/Ades), Giovanna Seymour (Anna Bolena), Giulietta (Les Contes d'Hoffmann), Judith (Herzog Blaubarts Burg), Marguerite (La Damnation de Faust/Berlioz), Brangäne (Tristan und Isolde), Waltraute and 2nd Norn (Götterdämmerung), Blanche (The Gambler by Prokofiev), Composer (Ariadne auf Naxos), Kundry (Parsifal) and Mrs. Meg Page (Falstaff).
From 1996 to 2006, Ms. Mahnke was an ensemble member of Oper Stuttgart, where she developed a broad repertoire. For instance, it was a great personal success for her when she sang the title role in Karl Amadeus Hartmann's Simplicius Simplicissimus in Stuttgart and at the Munich Opera Festival 2005. Her portrayal of Simplicius Simplicissimus brought her several nominations for "Singer of the Year" in the "Opera World," and in August 2006, Ms. Mahnke was appointed "Kammersängerin" of the Oper Stuttgart.
In addition to her busy operatic career, Ms. Mahnke also maintains a broad concert repertoire, including Bach's Mass in B Minor, Penderecki's Credo and Rossini's Petite messe solennelle (under Helmuth Rilling), Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, Mahler's Kindertotenlieder, Mahler's Symphony No.2 and Schoenberg's Gurrelieder (under Lothar Zagrosek and under Markus Stenz with the Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne), Mahler's Lied von der Erde (with the International Bach Academy in Stuttgart), Verdi's Messa da Requiem (under Manfred Honeck and Nicola Luisotti), Beethoven's Mass in C major and Bruckner's Mass in F minor (under Fabio Luisi), Haydn’s Paukenmesse and Mendelssohn's Elijah (under Yun Märkl and Helmuth Rilling), Bruckner's Mass in F minor (under Herbert Blomstedt with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra) and Bruckner’s Te Deum (under Simone Young in Madrid).
Born in Germany, Claudia Mahnke studied singing with Prof. Heidi Petzold at the Academy of Music in Dresden.
As of February 2019