Aside from the Ruhr, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia has sizeable population centres with major theatres elsewhere, not least the Cologne conurbation, with nearby Bonn. Historic Aachen is well known as the gateway to Germany from the west, and main point of entry by train via Brussels, but the lesser-known towns of Bielefeld, Detmold and Münster also have their own cultural draws, not least occasional operatic repertoire rarities. Osnabrück is just over the border in Lower Saxony (and is dealt with on that page of this guide), but is close enough to combine with northern Rhineland venues.



2015/16 repertoire: Tosca, Orlando, Der satanarchäolügenialkohöllische Wunschpunsch (Naske, WP), Tannhäuser, Die entführung aus dem Serail, The Bartered Bride, plus revival of West Side Story.

Tickets: €13-44.

Nearby (average journey times by train / per-hour frequency pre-performance / per-hour frequency post-performance): Mönchengladbach (57/2/2), Köln (54/2/1).



2015/16 repertoire: Die Zauberflöte, La scala di seta, Macbeth, Dog Days (Little, EP), Il trittico, A Little Night Music, Death in Venice, plus revival of Tannhäuser.

Tickets: €14-40.



2015/16 repertoire: Der fliegende Holländer, Benvenuto Cellini, Così fan tutte, Jerusalem (Verdi), Madama Butterfly, Holofernes (Reznicek), plus revivals of Fidelio, Rusalka, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Die Zauberflöte.

Tickets: €11-72.



2015/16 repertoire: La boheme, La finta giardiniera, Elektra, Sogno d'un mattino di primavera (Muno, WP), Zar und Zimmermann, Die Fledermaus, plus revival of Fiddler on the Roof.

Tickets: €15-42.



2015/16 repertoire: Benvenuto Cellini, La bohème, Les contes d’Hoffmann, Jeanne d’Arc (Braunfels), Don Giovanni, Die Eroberung von Mexico (Rihm), Lucia di Lammermoor, plus revivals of Aida, My Fair Lady, Billy Budd, Parsifal, Orfeo ed Euridice, L’italiana in Algeri, Eugene Onegin, Der fliegende Holländer.

Tickets: €12-93.



2015/16 repertoire: Les contes d’Hoffmann, Hänsel und Gretel, Così fan tutte, Cavalleria rusticana/Pagliacci, Aufsteig und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny, plus revivals of Die Zauberflöte, Anything Goes (Porter).

Tickets: €6-39.

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