One of the world’s most influential and prolific directors of opera, David Alden has won two Olivier Awards to date for his productions of Rossini Semiramide for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 2018 and Janácek Jenůfa at English National Opera in 2009. Alden’s production of Britten Peter Grimes was awarded the prestigious ‘South Bank Show Award’, and Alden has also received the ‘Bavarian Theatre Prize for Individual Artistic Achievement’ to mark his long-time relationship with the Bavarian State Opera.
Highlights of the 2023/24 season include Alden’s award-winning productions of Britten Peter Grimes and Janácek Jenůfa for the English National Opera, Wagner Lohengrin for San Francisco Opera, Verdi Un ballo in Maschera for the Metropolitan Opera, Donizetti Anna Bolena for the Deutsche Oper Berlin and a return to Grange Park Opera. Most recently, he has directed Wagner Der Fliegende Holländer for the Santa Fe Opera and Donizetti Roberto Devereux in a completion of his Tudor Queen trilogy for Zurich Opera House.
Recent highlights include new productions of Donizetti Anna Bolena and Maria Stuarda for the Zurich Opera House, Halévy La Juive for Grand Théâtre de Genève, Rossini Semiramide for Bayerische Staatsoper and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Wagner Lohengrin for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Meyerbeer Les Huguenots for Deutsche Oper Berlin, Catalani Loreley for the Stadttheater St Gallen, and revivals of his acclaimed Verdi Otello at the Teatro Real, Britten Billy Budd at the Bolshoi Theatre and Handel Alcina for Santa Fe Opera. Other work includes Alcina at the Teatro Real, Rossini Maometto II for Canadian Opera Company and a return to English National Opera for new productions of Otello and Tchaikovsky The Queen of Spades and a series of Verdi operas at Hamburg State Opera: La battaglia di Legnano, I due Foscari and I Lombardi alla prima crociata.
Together with his brother Christopher Alden, he also directed semi-staged productions of the Mozart/Da Ponte trilogy with Daniel Barenboim conducting the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Sought after by the world’s opera houses, Alden has directed other operas with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Dallas Opera, Komische Oper Berlin, Cologne Opera, Frankfurt Opera, Vienna Volksoper, Graz Opera, Opera North, Scottish Opera, New Israeli Opera, Spoleto Festival USA, and American Music Theatre Festival.
His productions of Thomas Adès Powder her Face for Aldeburgh Festival, Handel Ariodante for ENO, and Rodelinda, Rinaldo and Wagner Tannhäuser for Bavarian State Opera are all available on film. Film and television credits include a version of Schubert Die Winterreise with Ian Bostridge and Julius Drake, Weill Die Siebe Todsünden, Welsh National Opera’s production of L’Incoronazione di Poppea, and a documentary on Verdi for BBC Television. He also directed a world concert tour for the Pet Shop Boys.
SWR2, February 2023
The keystone and highlight of the trilogy - Roberto Devereux - has now been staged by David Alden at the Zurich Opera House; and the frenetically celebrated evening is another triumph for the opera house.
Bachtrack, April 2022
It’s been a production which totally satisfied musically and which provoked far more thought and tension than any Lohengrin I’ve seen.
Express, April 2022
David Alden's production of Lohengrin at the Royal Opera House is as glorious an example as one could hope for of how Wagner should be presented: the plot is non-stop action; the set design is magnificently imposing; the singing is stunning; the lighting is gloriously imaginative and the music is masterful. Altogether, this was perhaps as perfect an example of opera at its best as I have ever seen