Michael Schade © Daniela Matejschek
Michael Schade © Daniela Matejschek


MICHAEL SCHADE as Leukippos at the Hamburg State Opera

“The feast is strange to me, strange.” So says the innocent Daphne to Leukippos, her childhood friend and suitor who becomes the rival of the god Apollo, who also yearns to possess her. At the Hamburg State Opera, Michael Schade will take on the role of Leukippos in a revival of the late Strauss opera Daphne, a 2016 production directed by Christof Loy. He feels completely at home in demanding roles such as that of Leukippos, in which he sings freely – and ravishingly – up to a high C, and plays a convincing character as well: from the stubborn, boyish charm of the first scenes, including dressing up as a girl, to the awakening of male combativeness, which honourably only gives up in the face of the god.

Premiered in 1938, this late work by Richard Strauss is set in ancient Greece, and the story of innocent Daphne, who is desired by the shepherd Leukippos and the god Apollo, tells of mysterious yet free interaction between gods and men. It seems oddly taken out of any chronological context, fantasizing about a “purer” time with great longing, but in a secularized version that breathes the perfume of Strauss’ particular brand of late romanticism.


Andreas Schager, Apollo

Tigran Martirossian, Peneios
Renate Spingler, Gaea
Christiane Karg, Daphne
Michael Schade, Leukippos
Vladimir Baykov, 1. shepherd

Ziad Nehme, 2. shepherd
Julian Arsenault, 3. shepherd
Bruno Vargas, 4. shepherd
Katharina Konradi, 1. maid
Ida Aldrian, 2. maid

Men Choir of the Hamburg States Opera

Philharmonic States Orchestra Hamburg
Conductor: Christof Prick

Stage Director: Christof Loy
Stage: Annette Kurz
Costumes: Ursula Renzenbrink
Light: Roland Edrich
Choreographer: Thomas Wilhelm

Dramaturgy: Thomas Jonigk, Simon Berger