Ernst Haefliger

Ernst Haefliger (6 July 1919 – 17 March 2007) was a Swiss tenor.

External audio
You may hear Ernst Haefliger singing the role of "Tamino" in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's opera Die Zauberflöte K. 620 with the RIAS Symphony Orchestra conducted by Ferenc Fricsay in 1955 Here on


Haefliger was born in Davos, Switzerland, and studied at the Zürich Conservatory. He studied with Fernando Carpi in Geneva and Julius Patzak in Vienna.

In 1943, Haefliger sang for the first time the Evangelist in Bach's St John Passion in Zurich. After this debut he was engaged for several concerts in Switzerland and – after World War II – abroad. He soon won the attention of Ferenc Fricsay, who engaged him for the Salzburg Festival where Haefliger's world career started in 1949 with the role of Tiresias in Carl Orff's opera Antigonae. He also sang the role of First Armed Man in Die Zauberflöte conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler the same year at the Salzburg Festival.

In 1952, he responded to the call of Ferenc Fricsay and joined him at the Deutsche Oper Berlin where he sang the tenor parts in all Mozart operas, in Rossini's The Barber of Seville and Le comte Ory, in Pfitzner's Palestrina, the role of Hans in Smetana's The Bartered Bride, among others.

He had a lengthy and extensive international career and recorded many oratorios and operas. From 1971 to 1988, he taught at the Hochschule für Musik in Munich, Germany. Haefliger made his Boston debut in 1965 for the Peabody Mason Concert series.[1][2]

Haefliger also gave master classes in Zürich, Japan and in the United States.

Personal life

Haefliger died from acute decompensated heart failure on 17 March 2007, in Davos, aged 88. The pianist, Andreas Haefliger, is his son.


  1. ^ Boston Herald, 13-Feb-1965, McLaren Harris, "Ernst Haefliger, tenor, hailed in memorable program of songs"
  2. ^ Boston Globe, 13-Feb-1965, Michael Steinberg, "Ernst Haefliger's beautiful debut"

External links