Evelyn Herlitzius, Nino Machaidze & Eric Owens Headline Dutch National Opera’s 2018-19 Season

By Francisco Salazar

The Dutch National Opera has announced its 2018-19 season featuring many operatic classics as well as rarely performed works. The company will continue its Opera Forward series as well as its Holland Festival, which concludes the season.


The Dutch National Opera opens its season with Mozart’s masterpiece “Die Zauberflöte” in Simon McBurney’s new production. Kathryn Lewek brings her compelling Queen of the Night with Stanislas de Barbeyrac as Tamino and Mari Eriksmoen as Pamina.

Performance Dates: Sept. 4-29, 2018

Evelyn Herlitzius headlines Janacek’s “Jenufa” in Kate Mitchell’s new production. Annette Dasch makes her debut as Jenůfa with the legendary Hanna Schwarz. Tomas Netopil conducts the masterful score.

Performance Dates: Oct. 6-25, 2018

Lotte de Beer directs a new production of Rossini’s comic gem “Il Barbiere di Siviglia.”  Maurizio Benini conducts an outstanding ensemble that includes Ambrogio Maestri, Nino Machaidze, Davide Luciano and René Barbera.

Performance Dates: Nov. 10-Dec. 2, 2018

Johan Reuter, Sophie Koch, in her long-awaited DNO debut, and Violeta Urmana join forces for Enescu’s “Oedipe.” Alex Olle’s La Monnaie and Royal Opera House productions take the stage with Marc Albrecht, chief conductor of the DNO, conducting.

Performance Dates: Dec. 6-25, 2018

Director James Robinson and conductor James Gaffigan both make their Dutch National Opera debut in Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess.” Eric Owens stars in the title role alongside Adina Aaron and Latonia Moore and Janai Brugger.

Performance Dates: Jan. 16-31, 2019


Vivaldi’s oratorio “Juditha Triumphans” comes to life with mezzo-soprano Gaëlle Arquez in her debut at DNO in the role of Judith. Andrea Marcon conducts Floris Visser’s new striking production.

Performance Dates: Jan. 26-Feb. 7, 2019

Opera Forward

John Adams’ recent “Girls of the Golden West” makes it’s Dutch and European premiere with Grant Gershon in his DNO debut conducting. Julia Bullock, Davóne Tines, Ryan McKinny, J’Nai Bridges, and Paul Appleby headline the production. Peter Sellars directs the co-production from the San Francisco Opera.

Performance Dates: Feb. 28-March 17, 2019

A new composition by Dutch composer and conductor Micha Hamel, “Caruso a Cuba” is brought to the DNO based on the novel “Como un mensajero tuyo” by Cuban author Mayra Montero. Otto Tausk conducts the new production by Johannes Erath. The chamber opera is set to feature small chorus with eight solo roles, plus a vocalist as part of the orchestra.

Performance Dates: March 3-9, 2019

Pierre Audi directs György Kurtág’s “Fin de Partie” masterpiece with Frode Olsen, Leigh Melrose, Hilary Summers, and Leonardo Cortellazzi heading the cast. Markus Stenz conducts.

Performance Dates: March 6-10, 2019

Donnacha Dennehy and Enda Walsh’s “The Second Violinist” will get a limited run with Ryan McAdams conducting the modern piece.

Performance Dates: March 7-9, 2019


Christof Loy directs Wagner’s early work “Tannhäuser” with Daniel Kirch taking on the title role in his debut at DNO, Stephen Milling, Svetlana Aksenova, and Ekaterina Gubanova. Marc Albrecht conducts the star-studded cast.

Performance Dates: April 6-28, 2019

Puccini’s timeless classic “Madama Butterfly” returns in Robert Wilson’s production starring Elena Stikhina in her DNO debut, Enkelejda Shkosa, and Gianluca Terranova, also in his DNO debut. Italian conductor Jader Begnamini leads in the pit.

Performance Dates: April 23-May 13, 2019

Menotti’s “The Boy who grew too fast” returns to the DNO in a presentation geared for children ages 6 and up.

Performance Dates: April 30-May 4, 2019

Holland Festival

Pierre Audi directs a compilation of Stockhausen’s work entitled “Aus Licht.” Kathinka Pasveer conducts the rarity.

Performance Dates: May 31-June 10, 2019

Daniele Gatti conducts Debussy’s only opera “Pelléas et Mélisande” in a new production by Olivier Py. Cast will be announced later in the season.

Performance Dates: June 5-27, 2019