Susanna Stefani Caetani
Benedikt Sauer, born 29th January 1989, in Frankfurt am Main, is a conductor who trained in his hometown and in Milan. He currently works in Italy and Germany, focusing on opera.
He began his musical education in the study of piano and organ and has obtained numerous awards. He also studied violin and voice. His piano studies with Claudia von Lewinski continued, specializing on Lied – accompaniment and attending, in addition, masterclasses with Graham Johnson and Julius Drake. Twice an award-winning finalist in the organ competition ‘Jugend musiziert’, he has held the position of organist for several churches (also leading a chamber choir) and has appeared in various recitals, including concerts held in the Frankfurt Cathedral. In 2009, he began his studies at the Conservatory “G. Verdi” in Milan, from where he graduated in 2013.
Benedikt Sauer has participated in numerous masterclasses with renowned conductors including: Mikhail Jurwoski, Riccardo Frizza, Donato Renzetti, Ennio Nicotra, Jorma Panula, Zsolt Hamar and Lior Shambadal, and completed his studies in contemporary music in courses at the Peter-Eötvös-Foundation, the Bartók-Festival and the Divertimento Ensemble, meeting famous conductors and composers, including: Peter Eötvös, Matthias Pintscher and Sandro Gorli.
Throughout his training, he has enjoyed the support of Carlo Franci in the form of several private lessons, leading him to a profound understanding of the Italian opera tradition. Since January 2016, he has been studying with Oleg Caetani.
He has attended courses of dramaturgy with Piero Mioli. Furthermore, he had the opportunity to deepen his opera knowledge at the Frankfurt Opera guided by Felice Venanzoni, over the course of two internships. In 2012, he took part in a workshop led by Maggio Musicale Fiorentino of La Metamorfosi by Silvia Colasanti.
His participation in many rehearsals led by Harnoncourt helped him acquire a thorough grounding in music of the 18th century, especially in Vienna Classicism. He attended the preparations of various works, including several Beethoven Symphonies, “The Creation” by Haydn, “St. Matthew Passion” by Bach, “The Seasons” by Haydn and “Così fan tutte” by Mozart.
He has collaborated with various orchestras and choirs, including: The Orchestra Filarmonica Italiana; the Thüringen Philharmonie; the children’s choir of the Teatro Comunale of Bologna; the Orchestra Sancta Jerusalem; the Symphonic Orchestra Mendelssohn; and the Ensemble Mignon. He founded the latter, which uses period instruments, in January 2015 due to his special interest for historical informed performances.
He has rehearsed with major orchestras including: The Orchestra Sinfonica “G. Rossini” of Pesaro; the laVerdi Symphony Orchestra of Milan; and the ‘I Pomeriggi musicali’ Orchestra of Milan.
He regularly conducts at the ‘Kurtheater Bad Ems’, where he debuted in 2013, enjoying great success with “La Traviata” and – in the following year – with “Le nozze di Figaro”, for which he selected the cast.
He often collaborates with Opera Classica Europa and its academy, where he has conducted various concerts and opera productions including: Die Zauberflöte, Don Pasquale, Così fan tutte, Nabucco and L’elisir d’amore. On various occasions, he has also hosted concert evenings.
In October 2016, he conducted a well acclaimed Don Giovanni production at Gotha. Furthermore, he was selected to direct the preparation of the conservatory production of Rigoletto for Verdi's bicentenary in January 2013.
He has conducted sacred music at Niederlahnstein in Germany, Milan, Bologna and Perugia, also performing The Seven Words of Our Savior by Haydn and the Christmas Oratorio by Bach in St. Stephen’s Basilica, Bologna. He debuted in 2012, in concert at Kultursommer Rheinland-Pfalz and regularly returns there, directing several recitals, including the two piano concertos by Chopin in the version for string orchestra, and works by Richard Strauss (Oboe Concerto, Duett Concertino). In November 2015, he made his debut at the Teatro Elfo Puccini in Milan. December 2016, he conducted a concert with the Orchestra Filarmonica Italiana at the Teatro Nazionale Milano.
In addition to his musical education, he achieved a degree in Classics from the University of Bologna.