City Theatres

Opernhaus Chemnitz
Ballett: Ausschnitt aus "Das Dschungelbuch"
Figurentheater - Ausschnitt aus "Aladin und die Wunderlampe"

Chemnitz Theatre is a multidisciplinary theatre company and stages performances in five genres: opera, ballet, philharmonic orchestra, theatre and puppet theatre.

Opera House

Oper - Ausschnitt aus

Theaterplatz with the Opera House, the King Albert Museum and St. Peter’s Church is one of the City of Chemnitz’s most beautiful architectural ensembles.

The programme offers a broad spectrum for all ages and audiences, ranging from classical to modern opera, from operetta to musical. Maintaining its repertoire, in particular the stage works of Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss – a stated aim of the opera house at the time it was established – naturally remains an element of the programme today. At the same time, Chemnitz Opera has attracted national attention in recent years for its staging of unknown and rarely performed operas such as Mascagni’s “Iris”, Nicolai’s “Il templario”, Pfitzner’s “Rose vom Liebesgarten”, Schreker’s “Schmied von Gent”, Reznicek’s “Benzin” and Nicolai’s “Heimkehr des Verbannten”.


Ballett - Ausschnitt aus

The Chemnitz Ballet consists of an ensemble of 24 dancers (12 women, 12 men). A strong theme in its repertoire is narrative ballets by authors such as Shakespeare (“A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, “Romeo and Juliet”), which it performs on the stage of the Opera House. International choreographers also present their work, staging contemporary works in the ballet studio at the Opera House, which is otherwise used for training and rehearsals. The Chemnitz Ballet also works across the disciplines, performing in stagings of operas and plays. International dance companies, in particular from Chemnitz’s partner cities, feature at the TANZ ǀ MODERNE ǀ TANZ festival of contemporary dance, which is hosted by the Chemnitz Ballet every year.



The Robert-Schumann-Philharmonie has one of the richest traditions amongst German orchestras. It was founded in 1833 as a city orchestra by Wilhelm August Mejo, and gained increasing international significance. It was renamed the Robert-Schumann-Philharmonie in 1983 to commemorate its 150th anniversary.

The Robert-Schumann-Philharmonie is also a favoured partner of various concert organisers. In recent years, the orchestra has played guest performances in Venice, Thessaloniki, Rome, Salzburg, Frankfurt am Main, Düsseldorf, Cologne, Munich, Berlin, Dresden and New York as well as at the Schloss Neuschwanstein Festival, the Tonhalle in Zürich and the Brucknerhaus in Linz. It has produced a growing number of CDs since 2007. In 2009, a CD of Mendelssohn’s complete concertos for piano and orchestra received the ECHO Klassik award. The CD “Sinfonische Dichtungen von Hermann Hans Wetzler” with Frank Beermann and the Robert-Schumann-Philharmonie was nominated for the ICMA in 2011.

The duties of the 106 orchestra members include performances for operas, operettas, musicals and ballets, as well as symphony concerts, special concerts and chamber music evenings. Work with children and young people occupies a special place in the orchestra’s programme.

Schauspielhaus (Theatre)

Schauspiel - Ausschnitt aus

During the period when Chemnitz was known as Karl-Marx-Stadt, the Schauspielhaus was one of the most prominent and progressive stages in the GDR. Actors such as Ulrich Mühe, Corinna Harfouch and Michael Gwisdek began their careers here. Important contemporary directors such as Frank Castorf, Hasko Weber, Michael Thalheimer and Armin Petras all worked in Chemnitz.


On the large stage at the Schauspielhaus, the company stages published plays and literary adaptations as well as performances developed by the actors themselves, ranging from notable works of world theatre from the ancient world to classical modernism. The programme includes authors such as Molière, Goethe and Schiller as well as García Lorca, Friedrich Dürrenmatt and Arthur Miller.

The east wing of the Schauspielhaus focuses on premières and debut performances – contemporary forms of drama and new aesthetics, young authors and emerging directors. The play which wins the annual “Chemnitzer Theaterpreis für junge Dramatik” (Chemnitz Theatre Prize for Young Drama) is also premièred here.

Figurentheater (Puppet Theatre)

Figurentheater: Ausschnitt aus

The Puppet Theatre has been based in the Schauspielhaus since the start of the 2011-2012 performance season and uses its small stage, with around 100 seats. It is the oldest municipal puppet theatre in the former territory of the GDR, and it celebrated its 60th birthday in 2011. Performance styles are diverse and varied: Audiences can experience performances with traditional puppets such as marionettes, hand and rod puppets, as well as “free” performance styles using hand puppets with visible puppeteers and even abstract forms of object and material theatre.

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