Klaus Bertisch read English and German literature and linguistics, pedagogics and artistic education at Frankfurt University. He was a dramaturge at Frankfurt Opera from 1979 to 1987 when Michael Gielen was artistic and musical director. Already during that period he was invited as a guest to be dramaturge at several operahouses in Germany and Belgium. From 1987 on he worked as a free-lance dramaturge and writer for Siemens Cultural Program in Munich, the Hessischer Rundfunk Fra
nkfurt, Nationaltheater Mannheim, Volksoper Vienna, Ludwigsburger Schlossfestspiele, Aalto Theater Essen, Oper Leipzig and Opéra du Rhin Strasbourg. At Volkstheater Munich he worked as a dramaturge and actor during the creation of the play KAKTUS by Franz Helm (1989).
As a co-director he collaborated with Marcel Sijm during VERSCHOLLEN (song cycles by Leos Janacek and Dominick Argento) on a former coalmine territory in Essen, as well as during THE RAKE’S PROGRESS in Amstelveen. The Concertgebouw Amsterdam saw his own production of DIE LUSTIGE WITWE by Franz Lehar, and his staging of the fragment THE PLAYERS by Dmitri Schostakovitch as a production of the Holland Festival. For director Willy Decker he worked as a dramaturge on Wagner’s DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN at Semperoper Dresden, Korngold’s DIE TOTE STADT and Verdi’s LA TRAVIATA at Salzburg Festival, and on Britten’s DEATH IN VENICE at Teatro del Liceu in Barcelona. He was a lecturer for Opera Studio Nederland. There he also staged the solo recitals FOOD OF LOVE and VROUWEN, LIEFDE, LEVEN.
For the 20th Century Song Foundation he created staged recitals with songs based on texts by Rainer Maria Rilke, Heinrich Heine (DOPPPELGÄNGER with Olaf Bär), Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (GOETHES FRAUEN with Marlis Petersen) and Eduard Mörike (HEIMWEH with Wolfgang Holzmair and Michael Autenrieth). He was a dramaturge at Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin for L’ÉTOILE by Emmanuel Chabrier (directed by Dale Duesing). Together with Pierre Audi he worked on numerous productions at De Nationale Opera in Amsterdam as well as on Mozart’s DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE and the worldpermiere of Wolfgang Rihm’s opera DIONYSOS at the Salzburg Festival, the worldpremiere of Hans Werner Henze’s GISELA! at the Ruhrtriennale, for Gluck’s IPHIGÉNIE EN AULIDE and IPHIGÉNIE EN TAURIDE at La Monnaie in Bruxelles and for DIE EROBERUNG VON MEXICO by Wolfgang Rihm at Tearo Real in Madrid.
Klaus Bertisch is a teacher for Theatre Studies at Amsterdam University. Besides numerous articles in books and magazines his most important publications are a collection of fairytales about swans, called SCHWANENMÄRCHEN, and a book about stage director RUTH BERGHAUS for a series called ’Regie im Theater’. Klaus Bertisch is Head of Dramaturgy at De Nationale Opera in Amsterdam.