René Jacobs (Conductor)
Born: 30th October 1946, Ghent, Belgium
René Jacobs (born October 30, 1946) is a Belgian (Flemish) musician. He came to fame as a countertenor but in recent years has become renowned as a conductor of Baroque and early Classical opera.
Jacobs was born in Ghent. As a child, he was a chorister at the Cathedral of Ghent. Later he studied classical philology at the University of Gent while continuing to sing in Brussels and in the Hague.
As a conductor, Jacobs regularly works with orchestras and ensembles such as the Concerto Köln, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Akademie Für Alte Musik Berlin, Nederlands Kamerkoor and Rias-Kammerchor for recordings and concert tours, performing sacred music and oratorios.
Further Reading: René Jacobs
The Belgian conductor's restoration of the original libretto's prologue lends a wonderful symmetry and coherence to Weber's supernatural Singspiel, whilst German actor Max Urlacher is properly spine-chilling in the expanded role of the demon Samiel.
The original 1805 version of Beethoven's only opera is a high-adrenaline experience in the hands of the Belgian conductor and his period-instrument band, with Marlis Petersen in the title-role and Maximilian Schmitt as her imprisoned husband.