Artist of the Week: Johannes Martin Kränzle to Delight Munich Audiences on New Year’s Eve in Strauss’ ‘Die Fledermaus’

By Francisco Salazar

Johannes Martin Kränzle is slowly becoming a recognized artist in the world of opera. After studying violin and composition for years, the baritone turned to opera and has not looked back ever since. Even after a setback from Bone Marrow Disease, Kränzle’s return to the stage has had critics raving.

This week, with many artists taking a break,  Kränzle will headline New Year’s Eve at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Strauss’ “Die Fledermaus.” A New Year’s gala is never an easy feat as audiences expect to have fun and be thrilled by Strauss’ catchy score.

Kränzle will sing the role of Eisenstein, which is a vast change from his usual Wagnerian repertoire. But it is not the first time he headlines a New Year’s gala for the residents of Munich. He was invited back in 2012 to sing the role. However that time he only performed for one evening. This time he will get a full run in the role and this set of performances will surely showcase a more fully developed character and a richer and more mature voice. Additionally, with this run Kränzle will showcase his comic timing from his experience with his work in Rossini and Mozart. 

For those not familiar with the name, Kränzle’s has won the singer of the year award from the Opernwelt magazine and was also named the Best Opera Debut in 2014-15 when he sang the role of Beckmesser in “Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg” at the Metropolitan Opera. His debut at the Royal Opera House was also received with great reviews for his work as Don Alfonso in Mozart’s “Cosi Fan Tutte.” Critics noted his interpretation was a “First Class” performance and “precise.”

The baritone will also headline more important productions in 2017. He will make his role debut in the title role of Alban Berg’s “Wozzeck” at the Paris National Opera and he will sing the role of Alberich in Wagner’s “Das Rheingold” at Baden Baden. He will end his season performing Beckmesser at Bayreuther in Wagner’s “Die Meistersinger.”    

With a growing resume, this Eisenstein is one not be missed and one that will likely start the opera year as a great discovery.


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