German tenor Werner Güra, born in Munich, received his musical training at the Mozarteum in Salzburg and completed his vocal studies with Professor Kurt Widmer. Furthermore, he was coached by Nicolai Gedda, Professor Margreet Honig in Amsterdam and Professor Wessela Zlateva in Vienna.
After guesting at the opera houses of Frankfurt and Basel, he joined the ensemble of the Semperoper Dresden in 1995, where he sang the important Mozart and Rossini parts of his Fach. Daniel Barenboim invited Werner Güra for various productions at the Staatsoper Berlin. He continued as guest in Dresden and also sang his highly acclaimed Mozart roles Tamino, Ferrando and Don Ottavio at Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova, Opéra de Lille, La Monnaie in Brussels and the Opéra National de Paris, at the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music and in Baden-Baden. After a long period appearing in concerts only, Werner Güra decided to take part in a new production of Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in patria at the Zurich Opera in May/June 2014.
At this stage of his career, Werner Güra concentrates his activities on the vocal-symphonic and Oratorio repertoire. He sang on the most prestigious European concert stages such as Konzerthaus and Musikverein Wien, Royal Festival Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Philharmonie Berlin, Philharmonie Paris and worked with many orchestras including Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Wiener Symphoniker, BBC Symphony Orchestra, the German, Dutch, Spanish, Danish Radio Symphony Orchestras, the Gulbenkian Orchestra Lisbon, with conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Michel Corboz, Sir Colin Davis, Ádám Fischer, Bernard Haitink, Daniel Harding, Thomas Hengelbrock, Philippe Herreweghe, René Jacobs, Marek Janowski, Armin Jordan, Philippe Jordan, Ton Koopman, Fabio Luisi, Kurt Masur, John Nelson, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Sir Roger Norrington, Trevor Pinnock, Helmuth Rilling, Sir András Schiff, Ralf Weikert, Thomas Zehetmair and David Zinman. The tenor enjoyed close collaboration with Nikolaus Harnoncourt under whose baton he appeared at the Vienna Musikverein, Styriarte Festival, Philharmonie München, Concertgebouw Amsterdam and on tour in Japan.
Highlights of the season 2018/19 included Schubert’s Mass in E-flat major at the Vienna Musikverein with Riccardo Muti, Britten’s War Requiem with the Vienna Symphony and Philippe Jordan, Bach’s Magnificat and Cantatas with Concentus Musicus Wien and Stefan Gottfried, Bach´s Christmas Oratorio with Philippe Jordan, Haydn’s Creation in Eisenstadt, Mendelssohn´s Elias with the Orchestre des Champs-Elysées and Philippe Herreweghe, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Munich, Mendelssohn’s Die erste Walpurgisnacht in Brussels and Antwerp, Bach’s St John Passion with Akamus in Brescia, Munich and Berlin, followed by Schubert’s Mass in E-flat major with The Cleveland Orchestra and Franz Welser-Möst, Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Juanjo Mena as well as Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Manfred Honeck.
The 2019/2020 season brings Schumann´s Paradies und die Peri with Jérémy Rohrer in Ingolstadt and Bonn, Bach´s Magnificat with Philippe Jordan at the Vienna Musikverein, Bruckner´s Te Deum with the Pittsburgh Symphony under the baton of Manfred Honeck, Beethoven´s Mass in C major with the Concentus Musicus Wien and Stefan Gottfried, Berlioz‘ Requiem with Marc Soustrot in Leipzig, Schumann´s Faust-Scenes with the Royal Concertgebouw Orkest and Sir John Eliot Gardiner in Amsterdam, Bach´s St Matthew Pasison in Munich, Schubert´s Mass in E-flat major with Bertrand de Billy in Vienna, Beethoven´s Symphony No. 9 with Bruno Weil in Helsinki as well as with the Munich Philharmonic and Manfred Honeck in Munich.
Recordings for Harmonia Mundi France include Orpheus (Telemann), The Seasons (Haydn), Così fan tutte (Mozart), Christmas Oratorio and St Matthew Passion (J.S. Bach), all under the baton of René Jacobs. Lieder by Schubert and Der Rose Pilgerfahrt with the RIAS Chamber Choir conducted by Marcus Creed were also released at Harmonia Mundi. Beethoven´s Fidelio under the direction of Daniel Barenboim with Werner Güra in the role of Jacquino has been released by the Label Teldec. For Sony/BMG Werner Güra recorded Haydn´s Orlando Paladino and The Seasons as well as Bach´s Christmas Oratorio, all under the baton of Nikolaus Harnoncourt.
Werner Güra is also much appreciated as Lied interpreter, regularly giving recitals amongst others at the Wigmore Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Lincoln Center New York and the Schubertiades Schwarzenberg and Barcelona. Upcoming recitals will lead him to the Wigmore Hall London, the Vienna Musikverein, to Zurich and Stuttgart.
In autumn 2000, Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin was released as Werner Güra’s first solo recording on Harmonia Mundi, followed by Schumann’s Dichterliebe and Liederkreis op. 39 as well as Hugo Wolf’s Mörike Lieder, all with pianist Jan Schultsz. Latest releases on Harmonia Mundi with pianist Christoph Berner are Schöne Wiege meiner Leiden, featuring songs by Clara & Robert Schumann and Johannes Brahms as well as Schubert’s Schwanengesang, Winterreise and Mozart Lieder. All these solo recordings received the ‘Diapason d’or’ and were elected Editor’s Choice in Gramophone Magazine. For his Winterreise, Werner Güra received the BBC Music Magazine Award in the category ‘Vocal’ in 2011. For his latest Schubert-CD Willkommen und Abschied, he was awarded the prestigious German ECHO-Klassik prize in 2012. His latest recording features Beethoven Lieder and Bagatellen.
Werner Güra has been teaching at the Zurich University of the Arts since 2009.
2019 | 2020
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Ludwig van Beethoven: Lieder & Bagatellen
Piano: Christoph Berner
Label: Harmonia Mundi | 2015
Joseph Haydn: Scottish Airs
Piano: Christoph Berner | Violoncello: Roel Dieltiens | Julia Schröder
Label: Hamonia Mundi | 2014
Franz Schubert: Willkommen und Abschied
Piano: Christoph Berner
Label: Harmonia Mundi | 2012
The Art of Lied
Works by Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Hugo Wolf
Piano: Christoph Berner, Jan Schultsz
Label: Harmonia Mundi | 2011
Joseph Haydn: Symphony in C-Major Hob. I:30 „Alleluja“
Ludwig van Beethoven: Mass in C-Major op. 86
Marlis Petersen, soprano
Anke Vondung, alto
Werner Güra, tenor
Florian Boesch, bass
Arnold Schoenberg Choir
Nicolas Altstaedt, donductor
Georg Friedrich Händel: Messiah, HWV 56
Cornelia Horak, soprano
Wiebke Lehmkuhl, alto
Werner Güra, tenor
Florian Boesch, bassbaritone
Singverein der Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien
Johannes Prinz, conductor
Johann Sebastian Bach: St Matthew Passion BWV 244
Sabine Devieilhe, soprano
Elisabeth Kulman, alto
Werner Güra, tenor
Krešimir Stražanac, bass
Michael Schade, evangelist
Florian Boesch, Christ
Concentus Musicus Wien
Arnold Schoenberg Chor
Stefan Gottfried, conductor