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Birger Radde (Baritone, Tenor)

Born: Demmin, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany


The German baritone (and former tenor), Birger Radde, gathered first experiences in his home town of Demmin and continued his training with Professor Ilse Hahn at the Dresden Conservatory and Professor Hans-Joachim Beyer at the Leipzig Conservatory. After finishing his studies in Dresden and Leipzig, he received a scholarship from Yale University where from summer 2006 he continued his studies with Professor James Taylor. He graduated in June 2008 with a Master of Music Degree in Voice offered jointly by the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and the Yale School of Music. Master-classes with Rudolf Piernay, Norman Shetler, Christoph Prégardien, Ellen Hargis, Julianne Baird, Christian Gerhaher, Jane Glover, Peter Schreier, Olaf Bär and Richard Miller have complimented his vocal education. Already during his studies, Radde appeared in major opera parts with a focus on concert and Lieder singing, and worked together with professional ensembles.

Early career as a tenor singer

Birger Radde has been lauded for his "impeccable, lyrical tone" and his "stylish and lively interpretations" which makes him equally at home on both the opera and concert stages. In 2005 he made his operatic debut at the Leipzig Opera with following engagements at the Musikalische Komoedie Leipzig and the Neukoellner Oper Berlin. In addition, he has already performed at the Leipzig Opera several roles, including Helenus in Les Troyens by Hector Berlioz, Nathanael in Les Contes d'Hoffmann by Jacques Offenbach and 1st Fremder in Der Vetter aus Dingsda by E. Künnecke. Furthermore, he sang the parts of Peter Quint in The Turn of the Screw by Benjamin Britten, Tamino in W.A. Mozart's Die Zauberflöte and Count Belfiore in W.A. Mozart's La finta giardiniera.

Career as a baritone singer

Since 2008 Birger Radde is singing only baritone or bass parts, not tenor anymore. Acclaimed for his “warm timbre“ (Hamburger Abendblatt) and “his agile voice and talent for acting“ (Orfeo - Opernzeitschrift) he feels at home on both the opera and concert stages. In numerous operatic performances and concerts, he has collaborated with conductors Helmuth Rilling, Philippe Herreweghe, Marc Albrecht, Pedro Halffter, Stephen Layton, Attilio Cremonesi, Claude Schitzler, Simon Carrington and Graham O'Reilly. He has also appeared with such orchestras as the Dresdner Philharmonie, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Leipziger Barockorchester, Dresdner Kapellsolisten of the Staatskapelle Dresden, Bach-Collegium Stuttgart and Hannoversche Hofkapelle, in such notable venues as the Gewandhaus Leipzig, Semperoper Dresden, Konzerthaus Berlin, Laiszhalle Hamburg and Liederhalle Stuttgart.

In summer 2008 Birger Radde performed the title role in L'Orfeo by C. Monteverdi at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival in the USA. After moving back to Germany he created in spring 2009 the leading role in The silent Serenade, a musical comedy written by Erich W. Korngold. This production of the Young Opera Company Freiburg/Brg. was recorded and published in co-production with the German Label CPO and SWR. He sang the baritone role of Tarquinius in Benjamin Britten's The Rape of Lucretia at the Rheinsberg Theater in summer 2009 and in following performances at the State Theater of Altenburg/Gera and the Opera Festival Miskolc/Hungary. In 2010 he made his debut at the Berlin Philharmonic Hall with the Bass Arias in St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244) by J.S. Bach.

Following engagements include the Baritone Solo in the German Requiem by Johannes Brahms, Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem and J.S. Bach’s Magnificat (BWV 243). He will perform Harlekin in Ariadne auf Naxos by R. Strauss at the Theater Altenburg/Gera and take part at the Sasha Waltz Production of Passion by the French composer P. Dusapin at the Théatre des Champs-Elysées/Paris.

Birger Radde's particular interest next to the classical concert repertoire with works of the Baroque and the 20th Century, is the Lieder singing. He has given several recitals with various piano partners, including Axel Bauni, Anita Keller and Sonja Lohmiller, with an extensive repertoire, ranging from Purcell, Schubert and Robert Schumann cycles to contemporary compositions.

Birger Radde is prize-winner of the International Voice Competition “Kammeroper Schloss Rheinsberg“ 2009 and the BIMFA Competition Berlin 2010. He is located in Berlin/Germany.

Please do not use any part of this biography without permission. Please visit David Erler Website for contact details and more information.

Source: Birger Radde Website (Photos by Felix Rachor); Berliner Kantorei Website (December 2006), English translation by Aryeh Oron (April 2009); The Artist (September 2010)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (April 2009, September 2010)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Günter Brick


BWV 243, BWV 248

Simon Carrington


BWV 243

Ralf Popken


F.N. Brauns: Markus-Passion [Pilatus]

Bart Van Reyn


Video: BWV 244

Links to other Sites

Birger Radde (Official Website) [German/English]


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Last update: Monday, May 29, 2017 17:40