Michiel Dijkema

The Dutch opera stage director and set designer Michiel Dijkema studied classical piano at the Sweelinck Conservatory Amsterdam with Danièle Dechenne and at the Utrecht School of Arts with Alexander Warenberg and Alwin Bär. Subsequently he studied opera stage directing at the Academy of Music “Hanns Eisler” Berlin. He was active as a song accompanist and studied interpretation of song with Thom Bollen in Utrecht and with Wolfram Rieger in Berlin.

Since 2006 he directed and designed, among others, Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande (Dutch National Touring Opera), Bizet’s Carmen (Eisenach and Meiningen), Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice (Dutch National Touring Opera), Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo (Stockholm), Schönberg’s Pierrot Lunaire (Rotterdam), Strauss’ Die Fledermaus (Eisenach, Moscow and Tallinn), Marschner’s Der Vampyr (Amsterdam), Rossini’s Il Turco in Italia (Leipzig), Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte (Gelsenkirchen), Rossini’s La Cenerentola (Tallinn and Dutch National Touring Opera), Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel (Gelsenkirchen), Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Wiesbaden and Antibes), Puccini’s Tosca (Leipzig), Thomas’ Hamlet (Zagreb), Gassmann’s L’Opera Seria (Hannover), Smetana’s The Bartered Bride (Wiesbaden), Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana and Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci (Darmstadt), Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer (Wiesbaden), Offenbach’s Orphée aux enfers (Kiel), Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Hannover), Gounod’s Faust (Leipzig and Bolzano), Offenbach’s La Vie Parisienne (Volksoper Vienna), Strauss’ Salome (Wuppertal), the world première of Isidora Žebeljan’s Nahod Simon (Gelsenkirchen), Lehár’s Die Lustige Witwe (Linz), Kálmán’s Die Herzogin von Chicago (Koblenz), Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Semperoper Dresden), Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Gelsenkirchen), Dvorák’s Rusalka (Leipzig), Haydn’s Il mondo della luna (HfM Berlin), Stephan Peiffer’s Vom Ende der Unschuld (Internationale Maifestspiele Wiesbaden), Louis Spohr’s Faust (Koblenz), Wagner’s The flying Dutchman (Leipzig), Weinberger’s Svanda Dudák (Gelsenkirchen), Puccini’s Turandot (Magdeburg), Prokofiev’s L’amour des trois oranges (Koblenz) and Haydn’s L’isola disabitata, in triple-bill with Krenek’s What Price Confidence and Haydn’s Arianna a Naxos (Amsterdam/Den Haag).

Michiel Dijkema won several international opera directing prizes: the second European Opera-directing Prize, the first Peter-Konwitschny-Nachwuchsregiepreis for his concept of Carmen and the Eesti Teatrikunsti Muusikalavastuste Award for his production of La Cenerentola. This award is the most important Estonian music-theatre prize. The set design of Il Barbiere di Siviglia won the first Wizard-Award in Berlin. His production of Der fliegende Holländer as part of the festival WAGNER22 in Leipzig has been nominated for the International Opera Awards 2022 in Madrid.

Michiel Dijkema worked with the opera class of the ArtEZ Academy of Music and taught singing students and opera stage directing students as a guest-professor at the Hochschule für Musik “Hanns Eisler” in Berlin. Furthermore he lectured in the context of a multidisciplinary initiative at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre in Tallinn. Recently he staged a Haydn/Krenek triptych for the Dutch National Opera Academy, in cooperation with the Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century.

Future new productions and revivals among others at the Islandic Opera in Reykjavík, the Estonian National Opera in Tallinn, the Theater Aachen, as well as the Oper Leipzig, the Staatsoper Hannover, the Theater Magdeburg and the Semperoper Dresden.

Michiel Dijkema lives with his wife and son near Amsterdam. He rode on his bicycle from Amsterdam to Rome, Santiago de Compostela, Venice, Vienna, London, Barcelona, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and other destinations. May 2022 he biked with his then 7-year-old son from Amsterdam to Paris.

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