Den Norske Opera & Ballett: Premiere Tosca

11 June 2017

Puccini's Tosca premiered at Den Norske Opera & Ballett on Sunday, 11 June 2017.

Additional performances: 14, 17, 20, 24 June 2017.

Karl-Heinz Steffens at the Bournemouth SO

12 May 2017

Karl-Heinz Steffens returned to the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. In a programme titled Knights and Nobility Steffens conducted Wagner’s Parsifal: Prelude to Act I

introducing Schumann’s Piano Concerto played by Yulianna

Avdeeva and Elgar’s First Symphony. 

Knights and Nobility was performed at the Lighthouse in Poole (10 May), the Colston Hall Bristol (11 May) and at GLive Guildford (12 May).

Karl-Heinz Steffens stepped in for Markus Poschner at the MDR Sinfonieorchester Leipzig for concerts at the Theater Erfurt (05 May) and the Gewandhaus zu Leipzig (07 May)

The concert in Leipzig was broadcast on MDR KLASSIK and MDR KULTUR on Sunday, 07 May 2017 at 07:30 p.m.


Sulchan Nassidse, Chamber Symphony No. 3
Alfred Schnittke, Monologue for Viola and Strings
Anton Bruckner, Symphony No. 3 

Karl-Heinz Steffens, conductor
Antoine Tamestit, viola

Karl-Heinz Steffens at the MDR SINFONIEORCHESTER

02 May 2017

"Cultural political scoop"
02 November 2016

A "cultural political scoop" to choose Karl-Heinz Steffens as Den Norske Opera & Ballett's new Music Director, praised music critic Magnus Andersson in the Norwegian daily newspaper Klassekampen after Steffens' concert with the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra in October.

Reunion with the Philharmonia Orchestra
27/28 October 2016

Karl-Heinz Steffens and the Philharmonia Orchestra reunited for two concerts:


Ludwig van Beethoven, Overture, Leonore No. 3
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Violin Concerto
Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 2

Philharmonia Orchestra
Karl-Heinz Steffens, conductor
Arabella Steinbacher, violin

Thu, 27 October 2016, 07:30pm, Royal Festival Hall, London, UK

Fri, 28 October 2016, 07:30pm, Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford, UK

Karl-Heinz Steffens' debut as DNO&B's Music Director
22 October 2016
Panoramic view of the Opera House in Oslo from the Northwest. Photo by Rafał Konieczny.

Once again, Karl-Heinz Steffens conducted the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra – now for the first time as its Music Director – with a performance of Sibelius’ colourful second symphony and Grieg’s lively Norwegian Dances and selected songs.


Oslo Opera House, Saturday, 22 October 2016, 19:00.

Further information >


Karl-Heinz Steffens' Zurich Opera House debut
29 May 2016

On 29 May 2016 Karl-Heinz Steffens made his Zurich Opera House debut with Mozart's "Cosi fan tutte". 

Additional performances: 01, 03, 05 and 10 June 2016

"Hurricane force ovations" for Karl-Heinz Steffens' Bavarian Radio Symphony debut
07 May 2016

In a programme of Brahms and Reger, Karl-Heinz Steffens made a triumphant debut with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Highly acclaimed in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung for “rhapsodic heat and calm pathos”, his late-hour substitution was praised as a “blessing in disguise”. Full review here.

The press additionally celebrated Steffens for "arousing passion and controlled heat up to incandescence, [...] skillfully operating the levers of sound power opening up new spheres and deeply affecting the audience". Full review here.



Johannes Brahms, Tragic Overture in D minor, Op.81
Max Reger, Requiem for baritone solo, chorus, and orchestra (Hebbel Requiem), Op. 144b
Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90
Johannes Brahms, Song of Destiny, Op. 54



Karl-Heinz Steffens, conductor

Michael Volle, baritone

Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks


in Munich (Herkulessaal der Residenz, 5 & 6 May 2016) and Weiden (Max-Reger-Halle, 7 May 2016).


online here.


12 February 2016

On February 12, 2016 Karl-Heinz Steffens' new CD with the Bamberg Symphony was released









Gluck: Iphigenie in Aulis
Mozart: Idomeneo & Ballettmusik
Cherubini: Medea
Beethoven: Die Ruinen von Athen
Weber: Oberon
Mendelssohn: Ein Sommernachtstraum



Ariadne auf Naxos at the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater
17 January 2016

In January 2016 Karl-Heinz Steffens returned to the Staatsoper im Schiller Theater in Berlin for four performances of "Ariadne auf Naxos". 

Karl-Heinz Steffens in Monte Carlo
07 February 2016

Karl-Heinz Steffens conducted the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo on 7th February 2016. 


György Ligeti, Concert Românesc
Camille Saint-Saëns, Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 22
Gabriel Fauré, Pelléas et Mélisande, op. 80
Claude Debussy, La Mer - three symphonic sketches for orchestra


Lise de la Salle, piano



Appointment as Music Director of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet in Oslo
11 December 2015

On 11th December 2015 the Board of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet announced the appointment of Karl-Heinz Steffens as Music Director. Karl-Heinz Steffens will take up his new position on the 1st of August 2016. 

- "I am thrilled and honored to become the next Music Director of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet. I met the orchestra six months ago when we did Mahler's Seventh together, and it was a marvelous concert. I am very happy to be part of such a wonderful leadership team and look forward to making great opera and great ballet in this amazing house", says Steffens.

Karl-Heinz Steffens will also continue his successful work with the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz.

Karl-Heinz Steffens Dirigent
Karl-Heinz Steffens in Paris
04 December 2015

In December 2015 Karl-Heinz Steffens returned to  the "Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France":  Brahms and Schönberg with pianist Lise de la Salle as soloist.

New CD release: Alberto Ginastera
13 November 2015

On 13th November 2015 the fourth CD of the series "modern times" was released. Karl-Heinz Steffens and the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz dedicated this CD to the composer Alberto Ginastera, who - next to Carlos Gardel and Astor Piazzolla - belongs to the main representatives of the Argentinean music scene.

Echo Klassik 2015
18 October 2015


The Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz and their music director Karl-Heinz Steffens were awarded the ECHO KLASSIK 2015 in the category "ensemble/orchestra of the year" for their CD production "modern times: Bernd Alois Zimmermann"

Karl-Heinz Steffens Conductor
Karl-Heinz Steffens at the Hallé in the UK
14 October 2015

In October 2015 Karl-Heinz Steffens returned to the UK for five concerts with the Hallé orchestra in Manchester, Leeds and Carlisle.




New CD release: Henri Dutilleux
31 July 2015


End of July 2015 saw the release of a new recording by  the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz and Karl-Heinz Steffens: Works by Henri Dutilleux as part of the "modern times" series, which calls to mind the less renowned and rarely recorded pieces of 20th century composers such as Dutilleux, Zimmermann and Dallapiccola.

Today live from the Auditorium RAI Torino on Rai Radio 3

19 January 2017

LISTEN online!

Thursday, 19 January 2017, 20:30, Auditorium di Torino


Karl-Heinz Steffens' debut with the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai


Ludwig van Beethoven, Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37 
Anton Bruckner, Symphony No. 7 in E major (WAB 107)

Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai

Karl-Heinz Steffens, conductor
Herbert Schuch, piano


Listen onlineBBC Radio 3 in Concert

Recorded 15 February 2017, De Montfort Hall, Leicester


Felix Mendelssohn, Overture, Ruy Blas
Robert Schumann, Piano Concerto
Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 3

Philharmonia Orchestra
Karl-Heinz Steffens, conductor
David Fray, piano

Take a look behind the scenes of Pelléas et Mélisande! Debussy's mysterious masterpiece and only opera premiered at Den Norske Opera & Ballett on Friday, 7 April 2017.

Additional performances: 19, 22, 24, 28, 30 April 2017.

Karl-Heinz Steffens -
the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet's new Music Director
01 August 2016

On the 1st of August 2016 Karl-Heinz Steffens took up his new position as Music Director of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet. "I am thrilled and honored to become the next Music Director of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet. I met the orchestra [...] when we did Mahler's Seventh together, and it was a marvellous concert. I am very happy to be part of such a wonderful leadership team and look forward to making great opera and great ballet in this amazing house", said Steffens.

During his first season he will conduct the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra in two concerts in the Main House – with works spanning from Mozart to Sibelius and Grieg. Audiences will also be able to experience his direction of three new opera productions: Mozart's Così fan tutte, Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande and Puccini's Tosca, as well as a concert version of Beethoven’s Fidelio.

Karl-Heinz Steffens will also continue his successful work with the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz.

Karl-Heinz Steffens will not extend his contract as Chief Conductor of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz beyond the 2017/2018 season

02 December 2016

In summer 2018 Karl-Heinz Steffens will not extend his contract as Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz.


“There are many personal reasons that made me come to this conclusion. Now the time has come for me to dedicate myself to the highly interesting and increasingly frequent international challenges.” However, it is also very important for Karl-Heinz Steffens to remain close to the orchestra until his contract ends and in the future: “Months of intensive work still lie ahead of us and we have great plans for this and the coming season. I am looking forward to that!”


Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie’s artistic director Prof. Michael Kaufmann expressed his regret at Steffens’ decision but also showed understanding for his motifs. “Karl-Heinz Steffens is synonymous for the great upswing the orchestra experienced in terms of quality and acclaim during the previous years.” Not least having been awarded the Echo Klassik as „Orchestra of the Year“ 2015  emphasizes this assessment.

The Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz is awarded the prize for the best concert programme of the 2016/17 season by the Deutsche Musikverleger-Verband (DMV).

Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz receives  award for the „best concert programme of the season”

06 December 2016

Karl-Heinz Steffens with the Philharmonia Orchestra and David Fray on BBC Radio 3

02 March 2017

Den Norske Opera & Ballett: Premiere Pelléas et Mélisande

07 April 2017

© 2020 Karl-Heinz Steffens