Soprano

Christiane Karg

Introduction

Born to a family of confectioners in Bavaria, Christiane Karg studied singing at the Salzburg Mozarteum and at the International Opera Studio in Hamburg before joining the ensemble of the Frankfurt Opera. An outstanding recitalist and concert artist, she has twice been awarded the prestigious Echo Klassik prize – in 2010 for her debut Lied CD, and in 2016 for her disc of concert arias with Jonathan Cohen and Arcangelo. In 2017 she marks a significant milestone singing Strauss Vier letzte Lieder with orchestra for the first time. Glorious on stage, she has received tremendous accolades for her interpretations of Mélisande, Blanche, Pamina, Zdenka and Héro, amongst others.  She is about to launch a new scent to accompany her CD of French songs, ‘Parfum’.


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Discography

  • 24 May 17 MAHLER Symphonie No 2 'Resurrection'
    Philharmonie de Paris
    More info  

    “Christiane Karg est ici aussi une interprète de rêve. …. Karg toujours aussi rayonnantes…”

    “Christiane Karg is a dream interpreter… [she] sounds radiant.”

    Alexander Jamar, Forum Opera, 24 May 2017

  • 30 Apr 17 HANDEL Ariodante
    Ariodante Tour with The English Concert
    More info  

    Carnegie Hall, New York

    “Christiane Karg shone brilliantly as Ginevra, sporting a lovely, liquid, and lightly tart soprano. A combination of filial duty and strong will, she displayed crackling fire in her rapid, fierce excoriation of Polinesso, “Orrida agli occhi miei,” and flashed spectacular, pinpoint coloratura of her own in the sparkling aria “Volate, amori.””

    Eric C. Simpson,New Tork Classical Review, 1 May 2017

    “Christiane Karg’s darkly shining lyric soprano has placed her high in current Mozart/Strauss pantheon in Europe. If not exactly Italianate, her voice’s liquid roundness and impressive control stood her in good stead for the marathon  of lamenting arias Ginevra undertakes, as well as in two joyously flowing duets with the title hero.”

    David Shengold, Operanews, July 2017

    Barbican Centre, London

    “Technically she was flawless … Karg controlled the line expertly and her soprano had well-defined colour and a strong core. Ginevra’s quiet introspection was an asset, too, in ‘Il mio crudel martoro’; condemned as a whore by her father, the King of Scotland, Ginevra’s inner despair was palpable, immune to Dalinda’s consolatory solace.”

    Claire Seymour, Opera Today, 19 May 2017

     

    “…Christiane Karg as Ariodante’s wronged lover, Ginevra, was a model of subtle radiance and artful control that made her a great pleasure to listen to.”

    Curtis Rogers, Classical Sources, 16 May 2017

     

    Theatre des Champs Elysees, Paris

    “Pour Christiane Karg, cette Ginevra est l’une des étapes d’une évolution vocale qui doit la porter vers des rôles de plus en plus exigeants. Virtuosité impeccable et beauté du timbre sont ici ses deux grandes armes…”

    Ginevra represents for Christiane Karg one of the steps towards a more and more demanding vocal repertoire. The perfect virtuosity and the beautiful timbre are here two of her greatest assets…

    Laurent Burry, Forum Opera, 18 May 2017

     

    “Christiane Karg è una Ginevra incantevole, per canto e per figura. Viene brillantemente a capo delle agilità di “Volate amori” e trova accenti di grande forza drammatica nel recitativo che precede la grande aria a conclusione del secondo atto, cosicché “Il mio crudel martoro” diviene uno dei vertici della serata”

    “Christiane Karg is an impeccable Ginevra, for both her singing and acting. She showed precise agility in “Volate amori”, whilst finding great dramatic strength in the recitativo before the final Aria in Act II: “Il mio curedel martoro” which was the highlight of the night.”

    Daniele Galleni, Operaclick, 18 Maggio 2017

  • 07 Apr 17 RAVEL, DEBUSSY/ADAMS, BRITTEN, KOECHLIN, DUPARC Parfum (Album)
    Bamberger Symphoniker
    More info  

    “La voix, elle, présente les mêmes qualités que l’on a eu l’occasion d’apprécier chez Mozart ou chez Richard Strauss : sourire et couleurs argentées, expressivité sans rien d’histrionique.”

    Her voice has the same qualities one can hear in her Mozart and Strauss: bright, with silvery colours, and an expressiveness without any exaggeration.

     Laurent Bury, Forum Opera, 19 May 2017

    “…it works, intoxicatingly.”

    ★★★★ Erica Jeal, The Guardian, 4 May 2017

    “…Karg’s Voice is allowed to emerge in its splendour and fullness”

    Tim Ashley, Grammophone, July 2017

     

  • 11 Nov 16 BRAHMS Ein Deutsches Requiem
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    More info  

    “The shining purity of her singing brought out the warm, womanly compassion in her section with chorus.”
    John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune, 11 November 2016

    “Sweet soprano lines from Karg, who along with Nagy was making her CSO debut, elevated ‘Ihr habt nun Traurigkeit’, and she was particularly effective in the gently flowing melismas.”
    Sam Jacobson, Bach Track, 11 November 2016

    “[Christiane Karg] singing with golden tone and a restrained feeling that made her single solo even more moving.”
    Lawrence A. Johnson, Chicago Classical Review, 11 November 2016

  • 28 Oct 16 MOZART Concert Arias
    Berlin Philharmonic
    More info  

    “Christiane Kargs… Sopran eignet sich sehr gut für Mozarts Musik…
    Ein Mozart, nach dem man wie aus einem schönen Traum erwacht.”

    “Soprano Christiane Karg … is a very well suited for Mozart’s
    music… A Mozart, after which one wakes from a beautiful dream.”
    Felix Stephan, Berliner Morgenpost

    “She sang both with impeccable taste, her lovely lyric
    soprano under complete control.”
    Von Hugo Shirley, Bachtrack

  • 06 Sep 16 MOZART Le nozze di Figaro
    Ducth National Opera, Amsterdam
    More info  

    “As sympathetic as her mistress, Christiane Karg’s Susanna looked like an attractive, sensible schoolteacher. Karg’s focused, biting soprano put across both Susanna’s pragmatism and her frustration with the menfolk. Wonderful performer that she is, her controlled sensuality made the nocturnal ballad “Deh, vieni non tardar” the highlight it deserves to be.”

    Jenny Camilleri, Bachtrack, 8 September 2016

    “…elle prouve ici encore toute son adéquation dans le répertoire mozartien…”

    …she again proves to be a perfect singer for the Mozart repertoire…

    Laurent Bury, Forum opera, 6 Septmber 2016

  • 01 Sep 16 MOZART Le nozze di Figaro
    Yannick Nézet-Séguin & Chamber Orchestra of Europe
    More info  

    “‘…this is a pacy account of the composer’s most popular opera, with wonderful woodwind playing. The casting is optimal for Figaro — Luca Pisaroni, the finest on disc for his relish of the text’…’and Susanna, a pointed and beautiful Christiane Karg. Her Act IV aria is a highlight’…’Angela Brower is an enjoyable Cherubino’…’The ensembles zing.”
    Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times, 24 July 2016

  • 04 Jun 16 STRAUSS Der Rosenkavalier
    Teatro alla Scala, Milan
    More info  

    “As his intended, Christiane Karg was an unusually rich-voiced Sophie, with crystalline high notes that were absolutely beautiful. Each one bloomed above the orchestra under Mehta’s baton, seemingly suspended in time.”

    Rick Perdian, Seen and heard, 28 June 2016

     

    “Christiane Karg è una delicatissima Sophie, fresca e disinvolta scenicamente, dolce ma al tempo stesso determinata, energica, di gran personalità. La voce è cristallina, non di immenso volume ma molto ben proiettata, con puntature sempre a fuoco in grado di sovrastare con facilità il nutrito corpo orchestrale.”

    “Christiane Karg is a delightful, fresh Sophie. Her Sophie is both sweet and stubborn and has great charisma. Her crystalline voice is not the bigger, but very well projected. Her high notes are always focused and easily audible over the orchestra.”

    Camilla Simoncini, GB opera, 14 June 2016

  • 02 Apr 16 Debut U.S Recital Tour
    Atlanta, San Francisco, Washington & New York
    More info  

    “Karg is diminutive in stature, but possesses striking features and an intensely expressive countenance. She leans into the audience with hunched shoulders, drawing us in. At times one has to choose between being swept away by her visual storytelling or just listening to the elegant beauty of the voice with eyes closed. Karg’s light-lyric voice is seamless from top to bottom and possesses a smoky, languid character in the middle voice that is ideally suited to French mélodie. Whether Charles Koechlin’s tonally ambiguous Mélodies sur des poèmes de Shéhérazade or Francis Poulenc’s Hôtel, Karg transported us to a self-indulgent, attitude of leisure.”
    Stephanie Adrian, Arts Atlanta, 3 April 2016

    “‘Karg’s ability to seize listeners with the emotional integrity of her open-mouthed outpourings proclaimed her a successor to a long line of great soprano art song specialists’…’Karg’s instrument is strong and free, with an understated but nonetheless thrilling, shimmering vibrato on high that recalls, to some extent, the young Dawn Upshaw’s top. Although not the voice of a fragile flower or naive innocent, it is capable of sweetness as well as weight and depth. Even more important, she possesses an instrument that, like the voices of all great art song specialists, resonates from her soul.'”
    Jason Victor Serinus, San Francisco Classical Voice, 11 April 2016

    “‘These works are done often, but rarely so sensitively as by the rising German soprano Christiane Karg, who sang four of the songs on Friday in an exquisite New York recital debut at Weill Recital Hall.’…’Ms. Karg’s Hahn had an elegance that was never placid, full of nuances of volume and speed, tender yet cleareyed.’…’Her tone isn’t soft — there’s flint in there — but it’s smooth and flexible, and she handles it with a cool control that never tilts into chilliness or stiltedness. She’s sophisticated but not mannered, and emotion, be it melancholy or delight, reads easily in her voice.’…’This program, with healthy helpings of Wolf, Duparc, Ravel, Charles Koechlin and Poulenc, was a perfumed universe, one Ms. Karg made dreamy yet lucid. She had just the right combination of vivacity and silkiness in Wolf’s ‘In dem Schatten meiner Locken,’ and in a rare outing for Jesús Guridi’s charming ‘Seis canciones castellanas,’ her Spanish-style ornaments had flair, not touristic tackiness.’…’I can’t wait to hear her again’.”
    Zachary Woolfe, The New York Times, 18 April 2016

  • 20 Mar 16 SCHUMANN Faust-Szenen
    Barbican Centre
    More info  

    “Christiane Karg was in lovely, supple, responsive form as Gretchen, Faust’s lover in Part 1.”
    Peter Quantrill, The Arts Desk, 21 March 2016

    “A fine supporting cast of singers was headed by two complimentary sopranos, Christiane Karg as a Gretchen of diamond-cut purity and the softer Lucy Crowe.”
    Richard Fairman, Financial Times, 22 March 2016

    “Christiane Karg was a touching Gretchen.”
    Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 22 March 2016

  • 28 Nov 15 SCHUBERT Recital
    Wigmore Hall
    More info  

    “‘Christiane Karg spun the beautiful melody with total control every time, in subtle gradations of pianissimo’… ‘Here we discovered that Christiane Karg’s vocal tone could flare out magnificently, as it did in the anger and hurt of Love has Lied.’ ”
    Ivan Hewett, The Telegraph, 29 November 2015

    “Karg demonstrated a stunning technique and miraculous breath control and she manipulated the text in the stylish, uncontrived way that probably only a mother-tongue speaker would do.”
    Ruth Hansford, Planet Hugill, 30 November 2015

  • 05 Oct 15 MOZART Le nozze di Figaro
    Lyric Opera of Chicago
    More info  

    “Christiane Karg delivered a spunky, perky Susanna, floating her silvery upper register easily above rowdy ensembles. Her second-act aria, ‘Venite, inginocchiatevi,’ flaunted attractive phrasing and a delicate vocal tone.”
    MJ Chen, The Chicago Maroon, 1 October 2015

  • 15 Jun 15 HAYDN, MOZART, BEETHOVEN Scene!
    The Arcangelo Ensemble, Jonathan Cohen & Malcolm Martineau
    More info  

    “‘Karg lives each nuance of the abandoned heroine’s fluctuating emotions, from vengeful outrage to morbid pathos. She burns into the Italian consonants in the recitative, spins a tender legato in the aria’s slow opening section, then flares thrillingly into accusatory fury in the Allegro. Throughout, Karg holds vocal finesse and expressive intensity in near-ideal equipoise’…’Karg brings it alive in a way I have never heard before, making the coloratura sound desperate, in the right sense, rather than merely brilliant’…’Karg brings each of these distraught heroines excitingly, individually alive'”
    Richard Wigmore, Gramophone Magazine, July 2015

    “Karg’s soprano has a metallic gleam that cuts through the buoyant ensemble playing of Arcangelo, who, directed by Jonathan Cohen, are responsive to all the scenery-chewing moodswings.”
    Erica Jeal, The Guardian, 25 June 2015

    “Well planned and superbly executed, with nothing putting Karg beyond her comfort zone, even as she steps into a dramatic fach, which she says is new to her. It’s a wonderfully clear, expressive soprano, beautifully accompanied by Arcangelo.”
    Andrew McGregor, BBC Radio 3 CD Review, 12 June 2015

    “There’s a lovely sense of exploration and discovery about this project, both in terms of the repertoire and Karg’s own vocal qualities…we’re clearly in the presence of a singer who knows her instrument inside out and husbands her resources judiciously in service of the music rather than blowing a gasket trying to emulate her predecessors.”
    Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, 22 June 2015

    “For lovers of quality singing, this is simply unmissable, and a brilliant addition to Ms Karg’s growing discography.”
    Europadisc – CD of the Week 

    “‘It’s a sign of the times that the outstanding light lyric soprano of her generation – unrivalled in Mozart’s and Strauss’s ‘soubrette’ roles, and a lieder interpreter second to none – records not for DG, Decca or Sony, but for the niche label Berlin Classics. Her fourth BC album – and her second recorded with the London period ensemble Arcangelo – comprises recitative and aria sequences tailor-made for specific sopranos as concert repertoire.’…’Karg’s lighter timbre is tested, not uncomfortably, by the music’s range and intensity, but she comes into her own in Mozart’s sublime Ch’io mi scordi di to – his farewell offering to the first Susanna…'”
    Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times, 5 July 2015

    “This soprano’s latest recital recording of six concert arias has everything one could wish for. Her refined voice is wonderfully pliable, her sense of text acute. Haydn and Mozart dominate, but there’s a welcome push toward repertoire normally associated with a heavier voice in Beethoven’s ‘Ah! perfido’ as well as a rarity, Mendelssohn’s radiant, later stormy ‘Infelice pensier.’ Add the stylish, often tumultuous playing of Mr. Cohen’s period orchestra and a charming guest appearance on fortepiano by Malcolm Martineau in Mozart’s ‘Ch’io mi scordi di te?’ and this disc makes an immediate impression.”
    David Allen, The New York Times, 21 July 2015

    “I like the courage, the ardour and momentum with which Christiane Karg exceeds the possibilities of the lyric soprano. Without fear and with striking exaltation she addresses a perilous programme on this concert arias disc. She treats the text as the master and sings opera with a technique that remains accurate, precise, and subtle.”
    Jean-Charles Hoffelé, Artalinna, 29 July 2015

    “Always an exciting singer, Christiane Karg brings fire, grace and intense involvement to these assorted heroines in extremis, not least in her fearless account of Mendelssohn’s over-the-top Moartian pastiche. Everything she does is specific, individual, alive, while the players of Arcangelo match her all the way in dramatic flair.”
    Richard Wigmore, Gramophone Magazine, December 2015

  • 28 Feb 15 MOZART Die Zauberföte
    The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
    More info  

    “Lyric soprano of the moment Christiane Karg caught all the light and the beauty of phrasing in the heroine’s aria of bewilderment at Tamino’s trial-inflicted silence in ‘Ach, ich fuhls’.”
    David Nice, The Arts Desk, 1 March 2015