Benedikt Stampa to become new Artistic Director in 2019

Starting in summer 2019, Benedikt Stampa (51) will serve as new Artistic Director of the Festival Hall Baden-Baden. The announcement was made today by the private foundation’s board of directors. Benedikt Stampa will be the successor to Andreas Mölich-Zebhauser (64), who has decided to retire at the end of the 2018/2019 season but will remain in close association with the institution. Andreas Mölich-Zebhauser has directed the Festival Hall Baden-Baden since 1998.

“We are delighted to have found, in Benedikt Stampa, a high-profile successor to Andreas Mölich-Zebhauser. The current Artistic Director has made the Festival Hall what it is now and will be leaving a lasting imprint on the international cultural scene,” chairman of the foundation Professor Ernst-Moritz Lipp commented after the decision. “We have been convinced by Benedikt Stampa’s outstanding artistic achievements. He will be building on his successes from previous years and bringing fresh ideas starting with the 2019/2020 season. We have chosen him this early on to give him sufficient time to prepare his first program.”

Benedikt Stampa: “A great honor”
“To be chosen as Artistic Director of the Festival Hall Baden-Baden is a great honor for me. After more than ten fulfilling years at Dortmund’s unique Konzerthaus, I am in a cheerful mood as my career path now moves to the southwest,” Benedikt Stampa said on the subject of his appointment.

Mölich-Zebhauser: “Collaboration between friends”
The current Artistic Director is also very satisfied with the choice of his successor: “Benedikt Stampa is an engaging man who speaks and understands the artists’ language. Our co-productions brought us together as friends, and so as of now I’m looking forward to collaborating with my successor in the coming years. This is relatively rare elsewhere, and once again bears witness to the different philosophy and way of doing things in Baden-Baden.”

Professional roots in Hamburg
After studying musicology, business administration, and cultural management in Münster and Hamburg, Benedikt Stampa took on the direction of the Hamburg Cultural Foundation from 1992 to 1995. In this capacity, Stampa was, in addition to program development, responsible for creating a fundraising structure for the Foundation’s projects. In 1995 Stampa was named Managing Director of the Laiszhalle in Hamburg and was one of the first people to advocate the construction of a new Hamburg concert hall. In 2005 he became Artistic Director of the still-young Konzerthaus Dortmund, which he propelled to the ranks of one of Europe’s leading concert halls within a very short time. In recent years, the Konzerthaus Dortmund has repeatedly served as the stage for outstanding concert performances of operas, such as Cecilia Bartoli’s role debut as Norma in Bellini’s work of the same name (2010) and Tristan und Isolde under Esa-Pekka Salonen, a performance featuring videos by Bill Viola and directed by Peter Sellars (2010). Thomas Hengelbrock led the first historical performance of Parsifal (2013), and Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre will be heard with Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker (February 2017) in a production by Peter Sellars for the concert hall.

Benedikt Stampa has enjoyed a close artistic collaboration with such leading international conductors and soloists as Andris Nelsons, Yannick Nezét-Séguin, Esa-Peka Salonen, Valery Gergiev, Ingo Metzmacher, Cecilia Bartoli, Fazil Say, and Thomas Hengelbrock. At the Konzerthaus Dortmund, Stampa developed such pioneering programs as “Wild Youth,” “Popabo,” “Islands of Time,” and “Exclusive Artists,” which build long-term relationships with present-day artists and bring classical music to young audiences.

Private financing forms the basis in Baden-Baden
The Festival Hall Baden-Baden was inaugurated in 1998. It is funded by a private cultural foundation with currently 26 members, who together with the Friends of the Festival Hall and additional private donors and sponsors, play a fundamental role in assuring the institution’s finances. The finest classical artists in the world are regular guests in Baden-Baden. Since 2013 the Berliner Philharmoniker have joined the Festival Hall Baden-Baden in celebrating the Easter Festival. The Festival Hall Baden-Baden is considered to have among the best acoustics in the world.

Foto: manolopress