CONDUCTORPrincipal Conductor & Artistic Advisor: Norrköping Symphony Orchestra
Representation: General Management
Now in his third season as Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, German conductor Karl-Heinz Steffens is recognised as a conductor of great distinction in both the symphonic and operatic worlds. He is in great demand as a guest conductor; recent seasons have seen him work with ensembles such as the Bavarian Radio Symphony, Berlin Philharmonic, Helsinki Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic, Munich Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lyon, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony and Zurich Tonhalle Orchestras and with the Radio Symphony Orchestras of Berlin, Cologne, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hannover, Leipzig and Stuttgart. He is also a frequent visitor to the UK, making multiple appearances with the Philharmonia with whom he conducted a Brahms cycle as well as the BBC Scottish, Bournemouth, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestras, and the Hallé Orchestra.
He recently relinquished his post as Music Director at the Prague State Opera, where productions last season included of Der fliegende Holländer and Schreker’s Der ferne Klang, amongst others. During his time there he initiated a four-year Musica non Grata series, dedicated to “unwelcome music” written by composers who fell victim to the despotism of the 20th-century totalitarian regimes; last year the series included a festival celebrating the 150th anniversary of Alexander Zemlinsky.
Elsewhere in the opera house, Steffens has appeared several times at the Teatro alla Scala leading performances of Cosi fan Tutte, Don Giovanni, and Götterdämmerung, and has been regularly invited to the Berlin Staatsoper Unter den Linden. He led the Norwegian premiere of Pelléas et Mélisande at the Norwegian National Opera where he has also conducted Così fan tutte, Fidelio and Calixto Bieito’s production of Tosca.
In his previous position as Music Director of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, he and the orchestra were honoured with many accolades; they received the ECHO award for Best Orchestra in 2015 for their recording of works by B.A. Zimmermann and in 2016/17 were nominated prizewinners of the Best Concert Programme of the Season by the Deutsche Musikverlegerverband, the German Music Publishers’ Association. Their recording of works by George Antheil, an addition to their extensive Modern Times series featuring an array of 20th century composers, was designated Concert Recording of the Year by the Opus Klassik awards.
Prior to his conducting career, Steffens was a highly respected solo clarinettist who also held several orchestral positions culminating in the successive posts of Principal Clarinet with the Bavarian Radio and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras. Steffens has recently been awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz in Germany for his services to music.
Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact James Brown Management to ensure that you receive the most up to date version. Email: Jess Chan
Karl-Heinz Steffens returns to Israeli Opera
March 17th, 2023
Karl-Heinz Steffens conducts a run of ten performances of Don Giovanni at the Israeli Opera, opening this Sunday 19 March. The Kasper Holten production stars Alcantara German Enrique and Reich Oded as the eponymous nobleman. In July, Steffens returns to Israeli Opera for more Mozart, conducting a unique staged version of the Mozart Requiem created…Read more ›
Steffens performs Copland and Mahler in a double-role performance
December 8th, 2022
This Friday and Saturday (9 & 10 December) with the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, Karl-Heinz Steffens picks up his clarinet for Copland’s Clarinet Concerto before he draws breath to conduct Mahler 5. Prior to his conducting career, Steffens was a highly respected solo clarinettist who also held several orchestral positions culminating in the successive posts of…Read more ›
Karl-Heinz Steffens steps in at Stuttgarter Philharmoniker
October 10th, 2022
Bravo to Karl-Heinz Steffens who stepped in for Howard Griffiths last week to conduct the Stuttgarter Philharmoniker. Joined by Burcu Karadağ (ney), Hakan Güngör (kanun) and Aykut Köselerli (percussion), Steffens conducted Fazil Say’s Istanbul Symphony; the programme also included Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor with soloist Claire Huangci and opened with Weber Overture to…Read more ›
Karl-Heinz Steffens: Schreker’s Der Ferne Klang in Prague
March 18th, 2022
Karl-Heinz Steffens is at the Prague State Opera on Sunday 20th March conducting the premiere of Franz Schreker’s Der ferne Klang, the mysterious and passionate work that propelled Schreker to fame, in a new production by Timofey Kulyabin. This continues Steffens’ exploration of Musica non Grata, the series he initiated which is dedicated to “unwelcome…Read more ›
Karl-Heinz Steffens in Stockholm with Norrköping Symphony Orchestra
February 24th, 2022
Karl-Heinz Steffens takes the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra to Stockholm’s Konserthuset this Saturday. Featuring soprano Siobhan Stagg, the French programme includes Rapsodie Espagnole, one of Ravel’s first major orchestral works, and Impressionist masterpieces, Ravel’s Shéhérazade and Debussy’s La Mer, as well as Brett Dean’s orchestration of Debussy’s Ariettes Oubliées. More about the programme
Robert Fuchs: Symphonies 1 & 2
Steffens conducts the WDR Symphonieorchester Köln in Robert Fuchs’ first two symphonies.
Steffens and the Bamberger Symphoniker in Overtures by Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Cherubini, Gluck, Mozart & Maria von Weber.