Matthias Manasi

piano, conductor
biography

Matthias Manasi, conductor

As an internationally renowned symphonic and operatic conductor, Matthias Manasi is currently serving as Music Director of the Nickel City Opera in Buffalo, USA. From 2010 to 2013 he held the position of Chief Conductor of the Orchestra Camerata Italiana in Naples. After a successful tenure from 2010 to 2012 as Music Director of the International Punta Classic Festival in Montevideo he started from 2013 to 2016 working as Principal Conductor at the State Opera Breslau, where he was responsible for opera productions such as Eugen Onegin, Frau ohne Schatten, Der Rosenkavalier, Paradise lost, Straszny Dwór, Samson et Dalila, Parsifal and Carmen among others. He worked in 2012 as a Guest Conductor for Wagner’s Der Fliegende Holländer at the Polish National Opera in Warsaw. Matthias Manasi worked from 2007 to 2010 as Principal Conductor of the Erzgebirgische Philharmonie Aue, from 2000 he worked as Principal Conductor at the Passau Opera and at the Opera Constanta.

Highlights of the last season include his engagement at the Opera Halle (Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny), at the Opera Leipzig (Das Liebesverbot), at the Opera Bremen (Der Fliegende Holländer) and concerts with the Kazakh State Symphony Orchestra, the Liepaja Symphony Orchestra where he also appeared as a conductor while soloing on piano.

This season, Matthias Manasi made his US opera debut at the Nickel City Opera (The Impresario) and started his engagement at the State Opera Poznan (Macbeth, Eugen Onegin, Figaro gets a divorce, Boris Godunow, Jenufa). On the symphonic podium, he will conduct concerts with the Romanian Radio National Orchestra, Orchestra Sinfonica di Sanremo, Orquestra Sinfonica do Teatro Nacional Claudio Santoro, Symphony Orchestra Rio Grande do Norte and will make his debut at the Batumi Music Festival Orchestra.

Matthias Manasi’s orchestral engagements have included the Kazakh State Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of the State Opera in Hannover, Liepaja Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma, Orchestra Sinfonica Metropolitana di Bari, Wiener Mozart Orchester, Staatsorchester Braunschweig, Cukurova State Symphony Orchestra, Münchner Rundfunkorchester, Nürnberger Symphoniker, Neubrandenburger Philharmonie, Philharmonic Orchestra Brasov, Orchestra Camerata Italiana, Bach Collegium Stuttgart, Philharmonic Orchestra Olomouc, Punta Classic Festival Orchestra, Sofia Festival Orchestra, Polnische Kammerphilharmonie, Erzgebirgische Philharmonie Aue, Orchestra Opera Passau, Philharmonic Orchestra Györ, Orchestra Opera Constanta, Philharmonic Orchestra Baden-Baden and Südwestdeutsches Kammerorchester Pforzheim.

His opera activity includes productions at the Opera Halle, Staatstheater Braunschweig, Staatstheater Kassel, Oldenburgisches Staatstheater, International Punta Classic Festival, Opera Constanta, Kiel Opera House, Eutin Festival, Opera Klagenfurt, Kammeroper and the Belcanto Opera Festival–Bad Wildbad.

Matthias Manasi made his opera debut in 1995 with a production of Un Ballo in Maschera at the Silesian State Opera, returning in 1996 for La Bohème, Don Giovanni and Die Zauberflöte.

Matthias Manasi has also gained international acclaim as a pianist performing in recital and chamber music in Europe, USA and South America. He frequently conducts the orchestra from the piano.

Matthias Manasi studied piano (Prof. Andrejz Ratusinski, Prof. Carmen Piazzini), conducting (Prof. Thomas Ungar, Prof. Karl Österreicher), composition and chamber music at the University of Music Stuttgart and at the University of Music Karlsruhe. He graduated in 1995 with Honours in Piano from the Musikhochschule Karlsruhe and in 1996 with Honours in Conducting from the Musikhochschule Stuttgart. He participated in numerous master classes with renowned conductors, most notably Gianluigi Gelmetti, Jorma Panula and Kurt Masur. After his studies, he worked as an assistant to Manfred Honeck, Miguel Gómez Martínez (Münchner Rundfunkorchester) and Hilary Griffith.

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Matthias Daniel Manasi (born 26 December 1969) is a German conductor and pianist. He is the music director of the Nickel City Opera in Buffalo, New York, United States, and the Erster Kapellmeister of the Opera Wroclawska in Poland.

Early years

Manasi was born in Berlin. He began to study piano at age three, first with his father, then with Wolfgang Bloser, and decided to become an orchestra conductor at age nine. He started to study the violin at age eleven. Manasi then began to study piano with Andrzej Ratusiński and conducting with Thomas Ungar at the State University of Music and Performing Arts Stuttgart. There he studied also harmony and composition and earned three first prizes in piano and in 4 related musical subjects. From 1993 to 1995 he studied piano with Carmen Piazzini at the Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe. In 1994, he studied conducting with Karl Österreicher in Vienna and did many master classes with renowned conductors. He made his official debut as a conductor at the age of 19 at the Wilhelma-Theater Stuttgart conducting Igor Stravinsky's L'Histoire du soldat.

Early career

During his studies, he assisted Heinz Holliger as a pianist in a project at the Süddeutscher Rundfunk in Stuttgart and Manfred Honeck in a project with the Prague Chamber Choir at the Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart. Already during his studies he started to conduct the Győr Philharmonic Orchestra, the Nürnberger Symphoniker, the Pforzheim Chamber Orchestra and the Philharmonie Baden-Baden. Already during his studies in Stuttgart, he was an assistant conductor at the Opernhaus Kiel.

Conductor

In 2010, Manasi was named Music Director of the International Punta Classic Festival in Montevideo, Uruguay.[citation needed] In April 2010, Manasi was appointed Music Director of the Orchestra Camerata Italiana in Naples, Italy. In 2013 he started to work as Erster Kapellmeister (Principal Conductor) at the Wrocław Opera in Wrocław.

Conductor

Manasi's opera activity includes opera productions, premieres and perfoemances at many European opera houses and festivals with La Bohème, Die Frau ohne Schatten, Paradise Lost (Penderecki), Parsifal, Die Zauberflöte, Les pêcheurs de perles, Carmen, Tosca, Die Fledermaus, Der Fliegende Holländer, Angels in America, Halka, Der Rosenkavalier, Rigoletto, Falstaff, Macbeth, Il trovatore, Giovanna d'Arco, La traviata Samson and Delilah (opera), King Roger, The Haunted Manor, Otello (Wrocław Opera), Boris Godunow, Eugene Onegin, Elena Langer's Figaro Gets a Divorce, Macbeth, Le Nozze di Figaro, Carmen, Jenufa (Grand Theatre, Poznań), Der Fliegende Holländer (Grand Theatre, Warsaw), Die Zauberflöte, Turandot, Luisa Miller, Tristan und Isolde, Falstaff, Le Nozze di Figaro (Staatstheater Braunschweig), Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny (Halle Opera House), Der Fliegende Holländer (Theater Bremen) The Impresario (Nickel City Opera, Buffalo), Das Liebesverbot (Leipzig Opera), Turandot, Die Frau ohne Schatten, Wozzeck, Hänsel und Gretel, Idomeneo, Les pêcheurs de perles, Die lustigen Weiber von Windsor, Eine Nacht in Venedig, Das Rheingold, Cristoforo Colombo, Halka, Hiller's Rattenfänger and La Cenerentola (Kiel Opera House), La traviata, The Bartered Bride (Eutin Festival), Götterdämmerung, Pelléas et Mélisande, Der Wildschütz, Die Glückliche Reise (Oldenburgisches Staatstheater), Il trovatore, Rigoletto and La traviata (Opera Constanta), Lulu (Stadttheater Klagenfurt), Juditha triumphans (Kammeroper Schloss Rheinsberg), Don Carlos (Staatstheater Kassel), L'occasione fa il ladro (Rossini in Wildbad Festival), Don Giovanni, La bohème, Un ballo in maschera, Zauberflöte (Silesian State Theatre).

International PuntaClassic Festival

In May 2010, Manasi has been named Music Director of the International PuntaClassic Festival in Montevideo, Uruguay and he took on the post in January 2011 conducting an acclaimed production of Puccini's La bohème.

Orchestra Camerata Italiana

Manasi became music director of the Orchestra Camerata Italiana Naples in 2010 and guest conductor at the Staatstheater Braunschweig in 2011. He made his first guest-conducting appearance with the Orchestra Camerata Italiana on 2 April 2010 with a performance of Pergolesi's Stabat Mater for the celebration of Pergolesi's 300th anniversary. The concert was a production for the Italian television. After this concert, the Orchestra Camerata Italiana named Manasi as its music director and artistic director effective with the 2010 season, with an initial contract for two years. In August 2012, the Orchestra Camerata announced the extension of Manasi's contract as music director through the 2018/19 season with a new contract, for 8 years. He decided to conclude his Orchestra Camerata Italiana tenure after the 2013/14 season.

Nickel City Opera

In 2017 Manasi has been named Music Director of Nickel City Opera in Buffalo, New York. He made his first conducting appearance with the Nickel City Opera on 23 May 2017 conducting a new production of Mozart's The Impresario. Manasi so impressed NCO and Buffalo audiences he was offered the Music Directorship.

Pianist

Manasi has performed recitals throughout the USA, Europe and South America, performing not only classical and romantic repertoire but also contemporary works by such composers as Bernstein, Dutilleux, Schnittke, Takemitsu, Sawai, among others. In 2008 these included a piano recital in January 2008 at the Osborne Theatre in New York. After making his USA debut in 2006 with a Gershwin recital in New York, he played in 2007 and 2008 piano recitals in New York City, Washington, D.C., Silver Spring and Baltimore. He played a concert at the Munich Residence in November 2006. In 2004 he debuted as pianist in South America with concerts in Ecuador. In 2009, he played on Richard Wagner's Steinway piano at Villa Wahnfried in Bayreuth during a Spanish Song Recital.


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Reviews
Rome - Auditorium Conciliazione - Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma - Rossini, Casella, Stravinsky conducted masterfully by Matthias Manasi (English Translation)
2014-03-06 Factanet Rome, Rome
"

Matthias Manasi conducted the Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma together with three magnificent soloists; A. Hülshoff, German cellist, F. Faes, Italian pianist, H. Ticciati, English violinist, all four stars of the international world of music, and it was just pure magic. After the break it was time for Stravinsky's rarely played Symphony in C in a sensational performance, conducted by Matthias Manasi, who seems to have an almost mystical musical feeling that always brings out the best in Rossini's, Casellas's and Stravinsky's music...Manasi's reading of the Guglielmo Tell overture was masterful, resulting in a sensational interpretation rich in mystery, brilliance, power and detail...Matthias Manasi's conducting style was also surprisingly direct and well-phrased, allowing the musicians of Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma to express their maximum virtuosity. Everything was magnificient, and it was as if the music flowed in the veins of Manasi with a decidedly intense interpretation. It would seem that, on stage, Manasi knows how to turn everything into gold...He is a master of his craft, with a precise combination of good taste, absolute clarity, solid structure, joy and sensuality. ...That Matthias Manasi conducts magnificently was immediently evident, but never more so than in listening to his interpretation of Stravinsky's Symphony in C, conducted with color, spirit, and particularly dramatic urgency, but also with so much tenderness and flexibility of the melodies...All this was accomplished by Matthias Manasi's expressive gestures, which were efficient and often minimal, but with nothing that took away from the emotional intensity and commitment...It was a marvelous interpretation that added value to the work of Manasi and who is showing himself to be one of the most important conductors of our time...What you see in his conducting is great timing, no exaggeration in the tempi, and strength, all the while maintaining a superior mastery on the podium.

"
(Elide Apice)
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A wonderful concert of German music - Symphony concert conducted by Matthias Manasi (English Translation)
2013-12-09 La Gazetta del Mezzogiorno, Bari
"

The program of the final concert of the cycle, "The Music of the Nations," was dedicated to Germany...The stars of the evening were understandably of German origin: namely the conductor Matthias Manasi and cellist Alexander Hülshoff, both of whom are characterized by brisk and intense international careers. These two artists approached the excellent Orchestra of Bari with a special relationship and extraordinary ease that resulted in an impressive line.  of these symphonic works are rarely performed in concert. The stars of the evening were understandably of German origin: namely the conductor Matthias Manasi and cellist Alexander Hülshoff, both of whom are characterized by brisk and intense international careers. These two artists approached the excellent Orchestra of Bari with a special relationship and extraordinary ease that resulted in an impressive line.   

Manasi gave the delicate work of Wagner a special artistic touch of intimate intensity defined by nuances  of great sensitivity and a suggestive transparency in the strings. Followed by the 2nd Symphony, Manasi was convincing with his clever and thoughtful musical concept which underlined eloquently the spirit and essence of this "most personal" work of the composer. He achieved this by interpreting beautifully the musical phrases, the rhythmic finesse and subleties of the orchestral score. A fascinating and visionary interpretation with a fine and special eye for details, thanks to the genuine commitment on the part of the orchestra.

...The orchestra masterfully overcame technical challenges and the playing of expressive details were exemplary and spotless. It was followed by an encore with a piece by Bach. The concert was an overwhelming success.

"
(Nicola Sbisà)
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World Premiere of C. Minicozzi's Oratorio (English Translation)
2012-06-17 Ottopagine, Benevento
"Matthias Manasi conducted Orchestra Camerata Italiana and Coro Lyrico Teatro Romano. The audience was touched and moved by the sweet and intense sound. The excellent art of conducting of Maestro Manasi was precise and passionate."
(Mariateresa de Lucia)
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La Bohème in a vivid theatrical and musical production at the International PuntaClassic Festival (English Translation)
2011-01-15 El País Montevideo , Montevideo
"

In an outstanding theatrical performance, the Premiere of La Bohème took the stage this Thursday in the last phase of the International Punta Classic Festival at the Solanas Convention Center in Punta del Este...

The orchestra, as in Puccini's other masterpieces, never serves only as accompaniment. In the last century, both critics and musicologists have praised the theatrical qualities of these scores. In this performance, German conductor Matthias Manasi achieved a very compelling musical interpretation with the orchestra.

"
(A. Laluz)
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Rachmaninoff "Symphony No. 2" with the Çukurova State Symphony Orchestra (English Translation)
2010-12-06 Hürriyet, Turkey, Adana
"...this week the young German conductor and flute soloist Christiane Meininger have been in Adana for a concert with the Çukurova State Symphony Orchestra and made an enthusiastic impression... The concert was sensational, left an unforgettable impression and the listeners responded with enthusiastic applause. The interplay between conductor, orchestra and soloist was excellent..."
(Kübra Polat)
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