February 14, 2022

Spotlight on Louisa Muller

Louisa Muller is known for her “absorbing, provocative staging” (Opera News) and is breaking new ground as a young stage director. Recently named a finalist in the “Best Newcomer” category at the 2020 International Opera Awards, Muller’s work is respected and admired around the world. This season, we are elated to welcome her back for this new-to-Chicago production of a widely beloved opera, Puccini’s Tosca.

Lyric was first introduced to Muller during our 2009/10 Season as the Assistant Stage Director for Gounod's Faust and Janáček's Katy'a Kabanová. In 2013, she returned shortly after for her first major production as Stage Director of Puccini's La bohème.

As Revival Director, Muller brought new life to another work by Puccini that is cherished universally, Madama Butterfly. In our 2019/20 production, Ana María Martínez delighted Lyric audiences with glorious vocalism, and Lianna Haroutounian made a phenomenal Lyric debut for two performances as Cio-Cio-San under Muller’s direction.

Deborah Nansteel as Suzuki and Ana Maria Martinez as Cio-Cio-San in Lyric's 2019/20 production of Madama Butterfly.

Muller is also dedicated to dramatic training for opera singers. She has worked intensively with individual Ryan Opera Center Ensemble members and directed Lyric’s Rising Stars in Concert twice. Muller has also given master classes and offered dramatic coaching at the National Opera Studio in London, Houston Grand Opera Studio and Young Artists Vocal Academy, Wolf Trap Opera, Baylor University, University of Wisconsin, Lawrence University, and the University of Texas.

Louisa Muller at Lyric's 2020 Rising Stars in Concert

In collaboration with the wonderful Michelle Bradley as Tosca and the exceptional Russell Thomas as Cavaradossi, Muller makes her return to Lyric directing this season’s production of Puccini’s Tosca. Muller will also be back in Chicago to direct Lyric’s 2022/23 Season opener — Verdi’s Ernani — with Russell Thomas in the title role.

March 12 – April 10, 2022



A diva who has all of Rome at her feet. A woman who takes charge of her life and fights for what she wants. A heroine who is brave and loving, extravagantly emotional, yet utterly irresistible. Floria Tosca is all these things. She’s loved by Mario Cavaradossi, the revolutionary, and lusted after by Baron Scarpia, Rome’s vicious police chief. Puccini’s lushly grand-scale music illuminates these characters, and the entire opera bursts with a theatricality that makes Tosca a favorite of audiences everywhere.

Header: Lyric Opera of Chicago's 2020 Rising Stars in Concert
Credit: Kyle Flubacker

Other photos: Todd Rosenberg, Kyle Flubacker