Marcel Sijm


Marcel Sijm, stage-director for opera and musictheatre



Although working in all theatrical forms; musical, revue and cabaret for example, Dutch born director Marcel Sijm concentrates mostly on opera and classical music. He directed La Damnation de Faust, Der Freischütz, I Lombardi, Aïda, Macbeth, Carmen, The Rake’s Progress, The Consul, Der Kaiser von Atlantis, A Night at the Chinese Opera and Robinson Crusoe, among others.

World premiers include the opera Jimmy by Edward Top and Snow White (Micha Hamel) for the Reisopera Netherlands. Marcel Sijm had his directorial debut with The Dutch National Opera, Amsterdam with the opera Legende by Peter-Jan Wagemans, followed by Kopernikus from Claude Vivier and an adaptation of Il Viaggio a Reims for youth.

      all pictures on this page are from ‘Legende’

        by The Dutch National Opera

        in a set by Marc Warning and costumes by Arno Bremers

Besides these unusual and exciting productions, Marcel Sijm has directed several biographical dramas for the Amsterdamse Kleinkunstfestival, including works devoted to the lives and works of Jacques Brel, Simon Carmiggelt and Johnny Jordaan. Most recently he directed Johnny and Jones, a work dealing with two dutch-jewish performers who hoped, unsuccessfully, that their art would save them from deportation by the Nazis. Future projects includes biographical dramas of Judy Garland and Thelonious Monk; a puppeteering theatre work.

Sijm conceived several productions for children.; FRANKenSTEIN, Me and the Queen, Jimmy. His last productions for children were for the Dutch National Opera; an adaptation of Il Viaggio a Reims, and in 2017 ‘A little Dog’s Heart’ , an adaptation from Bulgakov’s novel, together with jazz composer Oene van Geel and Florian Magnus Maier, who works in contemporary classical music and Heavy Metal. Special strength has Sijm in reworking older comical opera into modern works; thematicly, in musical structure and in language.


His predilection to bring different musical forms and styles into a musical performance has produced highly successful artistic creations.

For several years, Marcel Sijm was the Artistic Director of the Poorterfestival: a festival promoting contemporary composers.

He was the Artistic Director of the Orkest MaxTak which promotes performances for children as well as the live-performance of music for films.

          Marcel Sijm staged

Sweeney Todd

for the Nederlandse Reisopera

       starring Dale Duesing

    & Sanne Wallis-de Vries


     A Triumph of Imagination

Wednesday evening one could look with amazement at the extraordinary, overwhelming, convincing, colorful, and fantasy filled staging of Marcel Sijm, which seamlessly joins with the colorful world the “child” Wagemans has composed.

Truly a triumph of imagination.  

         (Trouw, Peter van der Lint)