Eike Wilm Schulte

Eike Wilm Schulte

Kammersänger EIKE WILM SCHULTE was surrounded by music from the beginning as both parents were passionate choral singers. The young Schulte began serious piano studies aged 7, before a singing career crystalized, a decade later. At the age of 17, Schulte made his preparatory studies for the Cologne Music Conservatorium in Schloss Morsbroich in Leverkusen and in the Salzburg Mozarteum. At the time, the entrance age for the Cologne Conservatorium was 21 and so he required special permission to enter the Conservatorium as a nineteen year old. His studies lasted 4 years, in the final year of which he was engaged by General Manager Grisha Barfuss for a beginner’s company contract with the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Düsseldorf’s renowned opera company. His first role in Düsseldorf was Sid in Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring.

In the German system, a young singer’s ambition is however to achieve a ‘Fach’-contract, a contract guaranteeing him a certain repertoire, with which he can develop his vocal potential. Schulte was offered such a contract two year later, with the opera company of the city of Bielefeld where, in the following three years, he was given the opportunity to perform almost all the principal roles of a lyric baritone’s standard repertoire, from Papageno to Germont.

After a successful audition for the Hessen State Opera Company, he moved from Bielefeld to Wiesbaden where, under the guidance of Musical Directors, Heinz Wallberg and later Siegfried Köhler, he was able to expand his repertoire by a total of 75 additional roles. During his time as a company member in Wiesbaden (1973 – 1987) and again in Düsseldorf (1987 – 1989), he began his long freelance association with the leading German opera houses and orchestras, in Dresden, Hamburg, Berlin, Munich, Frankurt, Leipzig, Cologne and, in addition, was engaged by the Frankfurt Music Conservatorium to tutor young singers in Master Classes.

In 1988, Schulte appeared for the first time at the Bayreuth Festival, beginning a 12-year association with Bayreuth, during which years he sang three major roles (Wolfram, Gunther and Heerrufer). Bayreuth was also his ticket to international renown. Offers flowed in from all over the world and he became a fully freelance singer, appearing in the great opera houses, festivals and concert halls of New York, London, Paris, Milan, Vienna, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Cleveland, Geneva, Zürich, Tokyo, Rome, Palermo, Venice, Naples, Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Santiago de Chile; Edinburgh, Salzburg, Bregenz, Baden-Baden, Florence, Spoleto, Taormina, Lucerne, Bergen, Tanglewood, Carnegie-Hall New York, Hong Kong, Qatar; Philadelphia, Boston, Montreal, Amsterdam, Birmingham, Osaka.

Schulte has worked with 125 stage directors (including Götz Friedrich, Harry Kupfer, Thomas Langhoff, August Everding, Dieter Dorn, Peter Stein) and 75 conductors (including many of the ‘most famous of the day’). He has sung during a career of 60 years over 7,000 opera and concert performances at an annual average of 120 performances – a sheer colossal statistic. His concert repertoire embraces all the most important works and composers and he has performed a total of 129 different operatic roles (including 149 performances of his all-time favourite role, Beckmesser, ‘keiner besser!’) Since his debut as Alberich, at the Leipzig Opera in 2010, Eike Wilm Schulte has been much sought after for this role internationally. Other roles which continue to create worldwide demand for the artist include Telramund, Klingsor, Don Fernando and the Musiklehrer in Ariadne auf Naxos. His most recent engagements have been at the Munich State Opera singing Kothner (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg) and Musiklehrer (Ariadne auf Naxos).

Eike Wilm Schulte’s discography includes the complete recordings of “Lohengrin”, “Die Schweigsame Frau” and “Daphne” (Decca 2005), Mahler’s VIII. Symphony (EMI 1992), Beethoven’s IX. Symphony and Bruckner‘s 1st Mass (Deutsche Grammophon 2001).

After World War II, the State of Hessen initially abandoned the distinguished title of Kammersänger and only re-introduced the title in 2010, simply in order to honour Wiesbaden’s most famous singer, Eike Wilm Schulte. The State had previously made him an honorary member of the Hessen State Theatre and completed its raft of possible honours with The Goethe Medal, the highest honour that the State of Hessen can confer, awarded in 2008.

Ludwig van Beethoven – Fidelio – Don Pizarro
Bregenzer Festspiele, Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden, Teatro di San Carlo Napoli, Opéra municipal de Marseille, Los Angeles Opera, Hong Kong Philharmonic
Engelbert Humperdinck – Hänsel und Gretel – Besenbinder (Peter)
Staatsoper Hamburg, Staatsoper Berlin, Bayerische Staatsoper München, Royal Opera House Covent Garden London
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Die Zauberflöte – Sprecher
Metropolitan Opera New York, Bayerische Staatsoper München, Bregenzer Festspiele
Gioacchino Rossini – La Cenerentola – Alidoro
Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden, Bayerische Staatsoper München, San Francisco Opera
Richard Strauss – Ariadne auf Naxos – Der Musiklehrer
Bayerische Staatsoper München, Grand Théâtre du Genève, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf, Staatsoper Berlin, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Chicago Lyric Opera, Festspielhaus Baden-Baden
Richard Strauss – Die Frau ohne Schatten – Geisterbote
Teatro alla Scala Milano, Bayerische Staatsoper München, Grand Théâtre du Genève, Teatro Real Madrid
Richard Strauss – Der Rosenkavalier – Faninal
Bayerische Staatsoper München, Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, Théâtre du Capitole Toulouse, Teatro Arriaga de Bilbao, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf, Staatsoper Hamburg, Oper Köln, Metropolitan Opera New York, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Giuseppe Verdi – La Traviata – Giorgio Germont
Internationale Maifestspiele Wiesbaden, Staatsoper Wien
Richard Wagner – Lohengrin – Heerrufer
Bayreuther Festspiele, Hamburgische Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper München, Staatsoper Berlin, Oper Köln, Philharmonie Köln, Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf, Metropolitan Opera New York, La Fenice Venezia, Grand Théâtre du Genève, Los Angeles Opera, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Richard Wagner – Lohengrin – Friedrich von Telramund
Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Bayerische Staatsoper München, Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Staatsoper Hamburg
Richard Wagner – Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg – Sixtus Beckmesser
Bayerische Staatsoper München, Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden, Staatsoper Berlin, Staatsoper Wien, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Chicago Opera, Metropolitan Opera New York, L’opéra national de Paris, Théâtre du Capitole Toulouse, Royal Opera House Covent Garden London , Tokyo, Concertgebouw Amsterdam
Richard Wagner – Parsifal – Amfortas
Estonian National Opera Tallinn
Richard Wagner – Parsifal – Klingsor
Radio Sinfonie Orchester Berlin, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Richard Wagner – Das Rheingold – Alberich
Oper Leipzig, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Queensland Performing Arts Centre (on tour with the Staatsoper Hamburg)
Richard Wagner – Rienzi – Paolo Orsini
Staatsoper Hamburg
Richard Wagner – Tristan und Isolde – Kurwenal
Deutsche Oper Berlin, Metropolitan Opera New York, Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona, Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia Valencia
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johannes Passion
Kantaten
Magnificat
Matthäus Passion
Weihnachtsoratorium
Ludwig van Beethoven
IX. Sinfonie
Christus am Ölberge
Der glorreiche Augenblick
Kantate zum Tode Josef II.
Hector Berlioz
L‘enfance du Christ
Johannes Brahms
Ein deutsches Requiem
Cesar Bresgen
Surrexit Dominus
Max Bruch
Frithjof-Sage
Peter Cornelius
Stabat Mater
Gaetano Donizetti
Messa di Gloria e Credo
Antonín Dvorák
Biblische Lieder
Te Deum
Hanns Eisler
Deutsche Sinfonie
Edvard Grieg
Landerkennung
Georg Friedrich Händel
Dettinger Tedeum
Johannes-Passion
Judas Maccabäus
Messias
Joseph Haydn
Missa Celensis
Missa di Gloria
Die Schöpfung
Arthur Honnegger
Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher
Zoltán Kodály
Háry János
Gustav Mahler
VIII. Sinfonie
Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Elias
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Krönungsmesse
Requiem
Carl Orff
Carmina Burana
Franz Schmidt
Das Buch mit den sieben Siegeln
Arnold Schönberg
Gurre Lieder
Robert Schumann
Faust Szenen
Das Paradies und die Peri
Georg Philipp Telemann
Matthäus-Passion
Alexander von Zemlinsky
Lyrische Symphonie