Leopold Hager

Leopold Hager was born on October 6, 1935 in Salzburg, Austria. He exhibited rare talent in his youth, enrolling at the Salzburg Mozarteum in 1949, where he studied organ, piano, harpsichord, conducting, and composition. His teachers were Bernhard Paumgartner, Gerhard Wimberger, Cesar Bresgen, and Egon Kornauth. Hager concluded his studies in 1957 and thereupon accepted the appointment of assistant conductor at the City Theater in Mainz that same year. Hager left Mainz in 1962, and for the next seven years held brief but important conducting posts: from 1962-1964 he conducted at the Linz Landestheater, in the 1964-1965 season he was conductor at the Cologne Opera, and from 1965-1969 he worked as the general music director in Freiburg. It was in the following decade that Hager made his greatest breakthroughs. Chief conductor of Salzburg's Mozarteum Orchestra and Landestheater from 1969-1981, he made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1976 with Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro, at Teatro Colon in 1977 with Wagner's Tristan und Isolde, and at Covent Garden in 1978 with Le Nozze di Figaro. In the late 1970s Hager began recording the early Mozart operas for Philips with some of the finest opera singers of the time. The complete edition (five operas) was reissued by Philips in 2006.

Leopold Hager

Audio recording
Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier ---- Act I
Cheryl Studer - Angelika Kirchschlager

In 1981 Hager accepted the position of chief conductor of the Luxembourg Radio Symphony Orchestra, a post he held until 1996. Hager was an eminently respected professor of conducting at the Vienna Musikhochschule (now the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts) from 1992-2004. From 2005 to 2008 Leopold Hager served as Chief Conductor at the Wiener Volksoper in Vienna. A versatile conductor, he is a frequent guest of many of the world's leading opera houses (Bayerische Staatsoper Munich, Semperoper Dresden, Metropolitan Opera New York, Lyric Opera Chicago, Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, Teatro Colon Buenos Aires, Paris Opera and Vienna State Opera) as well has having appeared at the head of such orchestras as the Staatskapelle Dresden, Gewandhausorchester, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg, MDR Sinfonieorchester Leipzig, Munich Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Accademia di Santa Cecilia Rome, Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de Lille, Bamberger Symphoniker, and the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington.






Leopold Hager conducts Beethoven's Fidelio


Vienna State Opera -- Gwenyth Jones, Soprano - James King, Tenor - Theo Adam, Baritone - Karl Ridderbusch, Bass