The Austrian baritone Markus Werba studied at the Klagenfurt conservatory and at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and completed his training with Robert Holl and Walter Berry. From 1998 to 2000 he had a permanent engagement at the Volksoper in Vienna and started to establish his international career.
Since then, he has performed at the world’s most prestigious opera houses, such as the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Royal Opera House in London, the Bavarian State Opera, the Vienna State Opera, the Berlin State Opera, the Teatro La Fenice in Venice, the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome, the Liceu Barcelona, the Los Angeles Opera, the Opéra de Lyon, Opera National de Paris, the Grand Théâtre de Genève, the Metropolitan Opera New York, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, the Bolshoi in Moscow, the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, the Sydney Opera, the Chinese National Opera in Beijing, the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, the Salzburg Festival and the Tanglewood and Aspen Festivals. He has worked with conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Jeffrey Tate, Kent Nagano, Riccardo Muti, James Conlon, James Levine, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Daniel Barenboim, Ivan Fischer, Zubin Metha, Lorin Maazel, Daniele Gatti and Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos.
Recent highlights include two new productions at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale in Florence, where he appeared as the Music Teacher (Ariadne auf Naxos) under the baton of Daniele Gatti and as Eisenstein (Die Fledermaus) under the musical direction of Zubin Mehta. In a new production by David McVicar at La Scala in Milan, he took on the role of Mercurio (La Calisto). He was also invited to the Royal Opera House in London to sing Dottore Malatesta in Don Pasquale and made a guest appearance in the title role of Eugene Onegin at the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome. Other major successes in his career include Papageno (The magic flute) in a worldwide cinema broadcast by the Met and in productions at the Royal Opera House and the Vienna State Opera, Beckmesser (Meistersinger), which he performed at the Salzburg Festival, La Scala in Milan, the Met and the Staatsoper unter den Linden (conductor: Daniel Barenboim), and Rodrigo (Don Carlo) at the New National Theatre in Tokyo and at the Semperoper in Dresden. The artist’s vast repertoire also includes roles such as the title role of Don Giovanni, Figaro (Nozze di Figaro), Don Alfonso (Cosí fan tutte), Enrico (Lucia di Lammermoor), Alphonse (La favourite), Marcello (La Bohème), Figaro (Barbiere di Siviglia), Germont (La Traviata), Roland (Fierrabras), Frank/ Fritz (Die tote Stadt), Nick Shadow (The Rake’s Progress) and Doctor Marianus/ Pater Seraphicus in Schumann’s Faust scenes.
Besides his numerous opera engagements, Markus Werba can also be heard regularly in concerts and recitals with works by Mahler, Schumann, Schubert, Brahms, Liszt, Fauré, Ravel or Debussy. He has performed at the Wigmore Hall, the Berlin Philharmonie, the Pierre Boulez Hall in Berlin, the Musikverein Vienna, the Schubertiade in Schwarzenberg, the Mozarteum, the Salle Pleyel, the Philharmonie de Paris, the Théâtre des Champs-Elysees and the Rudolfinum in Prague, among others.
The 2022/ 23 season sees him returning to Florence as Beckmesser and Heerrufer (Lohengrin), and in a revival of The magic flute at the Vienna State Opera. He has also been invited to sing Schubert’s song cycle Winterreise at La Scala in Milan.
Markus Werba recorded his first CD with the pianist Julius Drake, featuring pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann and Hugo Wolf. On a CD by the Orchestre national d’Île de France released in 2019, Markus Werba can be heard singing Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and songs from Des Knaben Wunderhorn.