Daniel Barenboim Announces Resignation as General Music Director of Berlin State Opera

By Michael Vincent on January 9, 2023

Daniel Barenboim
Daniel Barenboim conducting at Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires.(Wikimedia Commons: Gobierno de la Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires)

The renowned conductor and pianist cited he is no longer able to deliver the level of performance required for the role due to ailing health.

World-renowned conductor Daniel Barenboim will be stepping down from his position as General Music Director of the Berlin State Opera due to ailing health. Barenboim, who has held this position since 1992, will be leaving the company at the end of the month.

In a statement released Friday, Barenboim said, “Unfortunately, the state of my health has worsened considerably in the past year. I can no longer achieve the level of performance which is rightly required of a general music director. As a result, I ask for your understanding that I will be giving up this role as from 31 January 2023.” He said he had asked Berlin’s senator for culture to release him from his contract.

Despite his departure from the Berlin State Opera, Barenboim said he would remain active in the classical music world whenever possible. “Of course, I will stay – as long as I live – closely connected to music and am ready to conduct, especially with the Staatskapelle.”

End of an era

Barenboim’s departure will mark the end of an era at the Berlin State Opera. Under his leadership, the company has become one of the most highly regarded opera houses in the world, known for its innovative productions and outstanding performances. Barenboim has also been a strong advocate for arts education, establishing the Barenboim-Said Academy in Berlin to provide training for young musicians.

Undeniable Legacy

Barenboim’s resignation will no doubt be met with sadness by fans of the Berlin State Opera and classical music lovers around the world. However, his legacy and impact on the world of opera will continue to be felt for years to come.

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