Oliver von Dohnányi


Oliver von Dohnányi



"The best work of a conductor in opera"


At the beginning of 2021, he conducted two operas - “Le luthier de Cremone” by Jenö Hubay and “Aunt Simona” by Ernest von Dohnányi at the Hungarian State Opera House. Both operas remains in the repertoire in 2022 and have been recorded on DVD and CD.

In 2022 he prepared a new production of Jan Cikker’ opera “The Ressurection”, one of the milestone of the Slovak operatic history, performed and recorded at the Slovak National Opera House.

Since 2020, he has been working with the Bulgarian National Opera in Sofia, where he conducts productions of “Tosca”, “Turandot”, “Don Carlos” and Verdi’s “Macbeth”, starring Alexandrina Pendachanska and Kiril Manolov.

In October 2020, he conducted Mahler's 8th Symphony ("Symphony of Thousands“) as the opening concert of the new “Eiffel Art Studios” at the Hungarian State Opera House.

Ural Opera Ballett Jekaterinburg, Russia (2015-2020)

From the 2015/16 season, he was appointed chief conductor of the Ural Opera in Yekaterinburg, Russia. In 2015, the first production of Philip Glass’s opera “Satyagraha” won two Gold Masks - Russia’s highest theatre award. The production was screened at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow as part of this biggest Russian theatre festival and immediately caught the attention of Russian and international critics and experts. In addition to this opera, which is still in the repertoire, he has also conducted operas: The Magic Flute, "Flying Dutchman", "Evgenij Onegin", "La Bohéme", "Otello", "Carmen" and "Rigoletto".

In April 2018, he received Russia’s highest national theatre’s award - the “Golden Mask” - “Best Conductor at the Opera,” among about 85 conductors working in Russia for Weinberg’s opera The Passenger, which he conducted (at the Russian premiere) at the Moscow in Bolshoi Theater.His last production for Yekaterinburg - Petr Eötvös’ opera “Three sisters” was performed in March 2020 with great success in Moscow at the the Golden Mask Festival and won the title of “Best Opera Production of the Year”.


He began his work immediately after his studies at the Academy of Music in Prague (Prof. Vaclav Neumann) and the University of Music in Vienna (Prof. Otmar Suittner).  Further he took place at the Masterclasses with Franco Ferarra, Igor Markevich and Arvid Janssons. He is finalist of the Talich Competition of the Prague Spring and a Conducting competition of the Hungarian Television.



He began his work immediately after his studies as he won the position of conductor of Czechoslovak Radio SO Bratislava, where he worked seven years.

At the age of 28, after his first successful production of “Barbiere di Siviglia” for the Slovak National Opera in Bratislava, he became the youngest music director in the history of the opera house. He has directed several productions, including "Madama Butterfly", "Aida", "La bohème", "Rusalka", "Macbeth", "Tosca", "Il Barbiere di Siviglia", "La sonnambula", "Faust", "Krútňava "(Suchoň) and others. He toured extensively in Spain, Bulgaria, China, Hungary, Germany, the Netherlands and other countries. At the Edinburgh Festival, he conducted Gounod's" Faust "(which won a special jury award) and" Prince Igor's "performances.

Three years later he was also appointed conductor of the Slovak Philharmonic in Bratislava.


His career attracted him to Prague, where he was invited as a guest conductor to the National Opera. Immediately after his first performance of ‘La Bohéme’, he was offered the GMD position. Between 1993 and 2007, he conducted and directed hundreds of performances entitled “La Bohème”, “Il Barbiere di Siviglia”, “Il Turco in Italy”, “The Bartered Bride”, “Rigoletto”, “La Traviata”, “Rusalka” . , "Samson and Dalila", "Macbeth", "Libuše", "Don Giovanni", "The Marriage of Figaro", "The Magic Flute", "Don Pasquale", "Tosca", "Norma", "Aida" as and Prokofiev's ballet productions of "Romeo et Juliette" and "Cinderella".

From 2006 to 2010, he also worked as the artistic director of the opera of the Moravian-Silesian National Theater in Ostrava. During this time he studied and conducted “La traviata” (G. Verdi), “Vita” (M. Tuttino), “Faust” (Ch. Gounod), “Carmen” (G. Bizet), “Don Giovanni” and “The Marriage of Figaro” (WA Mozart), “The Bartered Bride” and “Dalibor” (B. Smetana), “Jenufa” (L. Janáček) and “Romeo and Juliette” (S. Prokofjew)

He won a special prize at the Salzburg Television Festival for his recording of the television opera “Memento Mori” by Slovak composer Juraj Filas with the Prague Symphony Orchestra. together, where he conducted many of 2004’s Mozart “Magic Flutes” with great success at the famous Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires.

Other opera productions:

ENO (English National Opera): "Falstaff", "The Merry Widow" and "Mefistofele"

Opera North, Leeds, Great Britain: "Carmen", "La Gioconda", "Rusalka", "Andrea Chénier", "Norma", "Hamlet", "La traviata", "The Bartered Bride"

Munich Bavarian State Opera: Prokofiev: "Romeo and Juliet" and "Cinderella", "In the Blue Garden" (Ravel, Mozart) and "Midsummer Night's Dream" (Mendelssohn and Ligetti)

Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe: "Macbeth" and "Romeo and Juliet"

Mannheim National Theater: "Don Giovanni" and "Tosca"

Latest productions in 2017-2019:

"Katja Kabanova" at the Seattle Opera, Wagner "Das Liebesverbot" at the Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires, "Les Huguenots" at the Hungarian State Opera House, Budapest, "Carmen" for the New Zealand Opera, "The Magic Flute", "Rusalka "", "Greek Passion" and "Turandot" at the Ural Opera House in Yekaterinburg, Russia. He made his Australian debut in 2019 with "Carmen" in Adelaide and "Tosca" alongside the Queensland Opera in Brisbane.

Awards and honors:

In addition to the Golden Masks, Oliver von Dohnányi has won the Gustav Mahler European Prize (2011) and the European Union Arts Prize (2011). His production Norma won the “British Opera Award” for the Northern Opera (Theater Award 2012 and Achievement in Opera 2012, directed by Christopher Alden). "The Bartered Bride" (UK's Best Opera, 1998, directed by Daniel Slater)

Orchestras and concerts:

He currently works frequently with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra in Prague and is a permanent conductor of the Slovak Symphony.

He has also conducted the following orchestras: London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Manchester and BBC Belfast, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Sinfonietta, Philharmonie Buenos Aires, Tonkünstler Orchestra Wien, Hungarian Philharmonic, Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra and Zagreb Radio Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, London Mozart Players, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Wellington SO and many symphony orchestras in France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands and Hungary Zealand, Japan and Great Britain.


He has made several successful recordings with Naxos, Lyra, Opus / Audiphon, Panton, Supraphon and Marco Polo, including the art collections of Glinka, Khatchaturian, Rimsky-Korsakov and Tchaikovsky.

May 2022

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