Werner Van Mechelen
baryton-basse | Belgium, °1961
 
VIOLIN 2005
The Belgian bass-baritone Werner Van Mechelen studied at the Lemmens Institute in Louvain. He attended master classes with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Robert Holl, Mitsuko Shirai, Hartmut Höll and Malcolm King. He was finalist of the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels. He also won Prizes at the International Competition in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Concours International in Toulouse and the Concurs Viñas in Barcelona. At this occasion, he also won the special Schubert Prize. He very successfully participated in the renowned Cardiff Singer of the World competition.

Werner Van Mechelen is a highly versatile artist. Opera performances, concerts of the great Passions and Oratorios, as well as Songs with orchestra, have taken him to Brussels, Antwerp/Ghent, Liège, Amsterdam, Cologne, Dortmund, Paris, Nancy, Avignon, Geneva, Venice, Barcelona, Santiago de Compostela, Göteborg, Seoul, Tel Aviv etc.

Werner Van Mechelen has performed the great Mozart parts - the Count and Figaro Nozze di Figaro, Guglielmo and Don Alfonso Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni and Leporello Don Giovanni, Papageno Die Zauberflöte - as well as Pizarro Fidelio, Schaunard and Marcello La Bohème, Sonora La Fanciulla del West, Dandini La Cenerentola, Wolfram Tannhäuser, Kothner Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Alberich Der Ring des Nibelungen, Count Eberbach Der Wildschütz, Karnac Le Roi d’Ys, Sancho Panca Don Quichotte, Varlaam Boris Godunov, Gamekeeper Cunning Little Vixen, Tamer and Athlete Lulu, title-part Wozzeck, Nekrotzar Le grand Macabre, Chambellan Yvonne (Philippe Boesmans), Mandryka Arabella, Gyges Der König Kandaules, Ford Falstaff and the title-part Rigoletto.

He has worked with conductors such as James Conlon, Patrick Davin, Roy Goodman, Hartmut Haenchen, Lothar Koenigs, Bernhard Kontarsky, Ton Koopman, Sigiswald Kuijken, Jan Latham-Koenig, Friedemann Layer, Alexander Lazarev, Antonio Pappano, Stefan Soltesz, Jeffrey Tate, Silvio Varviso, Walter Weller, Mark Wigglesworth and many others.

The part of Alberich in the cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen occupies a prominent position in the Wagner repertoire of Werner Van Mechelen: after most successful interpretations at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie in Liège (with RTBF telecast), he also sang the part at the Netherlands Opera in Amsterdam, the Flanders Opera in Antwerp/Ghent and the Teatro La Fenice in Venice. At the New International Sopot Wagner Festival 2009 he sang his first Wotan Das Rheingold. The part of Amfortas Parsifal is to follow.

The parts the artist is preparing include Amonasro Aida, Jochanaan Salome, Faninal Der Rosenkavalier.

Werner Van Mechelen is particularly drawn to the Lied genre. Next to less familiar compositions, his repertoire includes all the great Lieder cycles. Most often he performs with the piano accompaniment of Jozef De Beenhouwer, Lucas Blondeel, Christel Kessels or Eric Schneider.

Along with recordings for radio and television stations, in Belgium as well as abroad, and discs with Baroque music, Werner Van Mechelen also recorded CDs of Richard Strauss, Claude Debussy, Francis Poulenc, Lodewijk Mortelmans and Peter Benoit. Le Roi d’Ys recently was released on Dynamic DVD. There are also complete CD recordings of Elias (Mendelssohn), Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, Livietta e Tracollo (Pergolesi), Die Meistersinger von Nünberg and Das Rheingold.
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