Alfred Eschwé was born in Vienna where he received his musical education both at the conservatory and the Music University. One of his teachers was the legendary Hans Swarowsky. After his engagement as first conductor in Osnabrück and Kiel, he was appointed to the Wiener Volksoper in 1989 where he has been in charge of the whole opera and operetta repertoire ever since. He was especially successful with Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, Prokofiev’s The Fiery Angel and Janácek’s Vec Makropulos, with Braunfels’ Die Vögel, Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, Zemlinsky’s King Kandaules, Kienzl’s Der Evangelimann, Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and with Cerha’s Uncle President. Moreover, he regularly also conducts the well-established repertoire at the Vienna Volksoper: Carmen, Boris Godunow, Rusalka, Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Norma, Ariadne auf Naxos, Nabucco, Rigoletto, La traviata, Tosca and Turandot as well as the classic operetta repertoire are frequently performed under his baton. In 2016 he was conducting the new production of Borodin’s Prince Igor at his home-theatre, in 2019 for the first time Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman.
In 1998, he made his debut at the Hamburg State Opera where he remained a regular guest for various repertoires during some season (Die Fledermaus, Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Il Turco in Italia, Rigoletto, Così fan tutte, Die Zauberflöte, Zar und Zimmermann, Faust and La Fille du Régiment). In 2001, he conducted the new production of Prokofiev’s opera The Love to three Oranges in Hamburg, its adoption at the Wiener Volksoper in 2012 being also under his musical direction.
With Mozarts Die Zauberflöte, Alfred Eschwé gave his first performance at the Vienna State Opera in 2003 where he consequently conducted L’elisir d’amore, of which a DVD-recording with Anna Netrebko, Rolando Villazón, Ildebrando D’Arcangelo and Leo Nucci was released. He also conducted the ballet premiere of Anna Karenina at the Vienna State Opera as well as the opening of the Vienna Opera Ball 2009 and 2010. DVD productions exist of his production of Der Evangelimann (at the Vienna Volksoper) and Der Graf von Luxemburg (at the Theater an der Wien). International guest performances have lead Alfred Eschwé often to Italy, amongst others to the Teatro Regio di Torino, the Teatro Bellini in Catania, the Teatro Massimo in Palermo and to the Teatro Verdi in Trieste. In 2006, he debuted with Bellini’s Norma at the Berlin State Opera, in 2008 with Die Fledermaus at the Zurich Opera House and at the Munich State Opera as well as in 2014 at the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki. In 2009, he conducted for the first time at the New National Theatre Tokio (Die Zauberflöte) returning there in 2015 for Die Fledermaus; a production which he is committed to revive in 2018 again. In 2015 he made his debut at the Dresden State Opera with a new-production of Lortzing’s Der Wildschütz. In 2016 he appeared for the first time at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples, in 2017 at the conductor’s desk of the Gürzenich-Orchestra of the Cologne Opera. Following performances of Die Fledermaus and Tosca at the Cologne Opera, he conducted there Die Zauberflöte and Carmen in 2021/22.