German tenor Werner Güra, born in Munich, received his musical training at the Mozarteum in Salzburg and comple¬ted his vocal studies with Profes¬sor Kurt Widmer. Furthermore he was coached by Nicolai Gedda, Professor Margreet Honig, Amsterdam, and Professor Wessela Zlateva, Vienna.
After guesting at the opera houses of Frankfurt and Basel he joined in 1995 the ensemble of the Semperoper Dresden where he sang the important Mozart and Rossini parts of his Fach. Daniel Barenboim invited Werner Güra for various productions at the Staatsoper Berlin. He continued as guest in Dresden and furthermore sang his highly acclaimed Mozart roles Tamino, Ferrando and Don Ottavio at Teatro Carlo Felice, Genova, Opera of Lille, La Monnaie Brussels and the Opéra National de Paris, at the Innsbruck Festival für Alte Musik and in Baden-Baden.
At this stage of his career, Werner Güra concentrates his activities to vocal-symphonic and oratoria works. He sang on the important European concert stages such as Konzerthaus and Musikverein Wien, Royal Festival Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Philharmonie Berlin, Philharmonie Paris and worked with many orchestras including Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Wiener Symphoniker, BBC Symphony Orchestra, the German, Dutch, Spanish, Danish Radio Symphony Orchestras, the Gulbenkian Orchestra Lissabon, with conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Michel Corboz, Sir Colin Davis, Adam Fischer, Bernard Haitink, Daniel Harding, Thomas Hengelbrock, Philippe Herreweghe, René Jacobs, Marek Janowski, Armin Jordan, Philippe Jordan, Ton Koopman, Fabio Luisi, Kurt Masur, John Nelson, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Sir Roger Norrington, Trevor Pinnock, Helmuth Rilling, Sir András Schiff, Ralf Weikert, Thomas Zehetmair, David Zinman. The tenor enjoys frequent co-operation with Nikolaus Harnoncourt under whose baton he appeared at Wiener Musikverein, Styriarte Festival, Philharmonie München, Concertgebouw Amsterdam and on tour in Japan.
After a long period of only concert appearances Werner Güra decided to participate in Opera Zurich’s new production of “Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in patria” in May/June 2014.
Highlights of the season 2017/18 were recitals in Versailles, Ittingen and Paris as well as concerts with works by Bach and Schumann in Helsinki, Mendelssohn´s LOBGESANG in Hamburg, Haydn´s SEASONS with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Haydn´s CREATION and Händel´s MESSIAH with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under Manfred Honeck, a tour in Germany with Haydn´s CREATION, Bach´s MASS IN B MINOR at the Vienna Musikverein and his ST. MATTHEW PASSION in Rotterdam. Further highlights included Berlioz´ REQUIEM in Hannover, Beethoven´s IX SYMPHONY and Bach Cantatas in Hamburg.
Season 2018/19 sees Schubert´s MASS IN E-FLAT MAJOR at the Vienna Musikverein with Riccardo Mut, Britten´s WAR REQUIEM with the Vienna Symphony and Philppe Jordan, Bach´s MAGNIFICAT and cantatas in Vienna and Linz with Concentus Musicus Wien and Stefan Gottfried, Bach´s CHRISTMAS ORATORIO at the Vienna Konzerthaus with the Vienna Symphony and Philippe Jordan, Haydn´s CREATION in Eisenstadt, Beethoven´s 9th SYMPHONY in Munich, Mendelssohn´s DIE ERSTE WALPURGISNACHT in Brussels and Antwerp, Bach´s ST. JOHN PASSION with Akamus in Brescia, Munich and Berlin, followed by Schubert´s MASS IN E-FLAT MAJOR with The Cleveland Orchestra and Franz Welser-Möst, Bach´s ST. MATTHEW PASSION with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Juanjo Mena as well as Beethoven´s 9th SYMPHONY with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Manfred Honeck.
In recital, Werner Güra appears at the Berlin Konzerthaus, La Monnaie in Brussels, Pierre Boulez Hall in Berlin, London Wigmore Hall and in Geneva.
Recordings include Fidelio (Jaquino) with Daniel Barenboim for Decca; under the label of Harmonia Mundi Werner Güra recorded Telemann's Orpheus, Schu¬mann's Der Rose Pilger-fahrt, Bach's Weihnachtsoratorium and Matthäus Passion (arias), and with René Jacobs Der hochmütige, gestürzte und wieder erhabene Croesus (Edison 2002), Così fan tutte and Haydn’s Jahreszeiten. For Sony/BMG he recorded Haydn’s Orlando Paladino and Die Jahreszeiten as well as Bach’s Weihnachtsoratorium, and. Unitel Classica launched on DVD Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, all of these under the baton of Nikolaus Harnoncourt. The recently launched CD of Bach’s St Matthew Passion conducted by René Jacobs (Harmonia Mundi) features Werner Güra as Evangelist for which he received high international acclaim.
Werner Güra is also much appreciated as Lied interpreter and gives recitals amongst others in the London Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Lincoln Center New York, Musikverein Wien, at the Schubertiade Schwarzenberg. In autumn 2000 appeared Werner Güra's first solo recording for Harmonia Mundi: Schubert - Die schöne Müllerin, to be followed by Schumann: Dichterliebe, Liederkreis and Hugo Wolf’s Mörike Lieder, all with pianist Jan Schultsz. Latest releases, also by Harmonia Mundi and with pianist Christoph Berner, are Schöne Wiege meiner Leiden, featuring songs by Clara & Robert Schumann and Johannes Brahms, Schubert’s Schwanengesang, Winterreise, and Mozart Lieder. All these solo CDs received the Diapason d’or and were elected Editor’s Choice in Gramophone. For his Winterreise Werner Güra received the BBC Music Magazine Award “Vocal” 2011. For his latest Schubert-CD Willkommen und Abschied he was awarded the prestigious German ECHO-Klassik prize 2012.Latest release: Beethoven “Lieder & Bagatellen”.
Werner Güra teaches since 2009 at the Music Academy Zürich.