Stephan Zilias studied piano and conducting in Cologne, Düsseldorf and London. Among his teachers were Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich (Piano), Volker Wangenheim, Rüdiger Bohn and Colin Metters (conducting).
He received important musical impulses in master classes with Bernard Haitink, Gianluigi Gelmetti and Ilan Volkov. While still a student he worked as a conductor, and musical assistant of Markus Stenz, at the Cologne Opera, where he made his debut in 2011 with three performances of Wozzeck.
He gained formative experience as an assistant to Edward Gardner (English National Opera), Thomas Hengelbrock (Baden-Baden Festival) and Stefano Montanari (Opéra de Lyon).
In summer 2013 he made his debut at the Bregenz Festival conducting Die Zauberflöte. After having worked as a repetiteur and Kapellmeister at the Mainz Opera for two seasons, he was named 1. Kapellmeister at Theater Lüneburg in 2014.
Since August 2015, Stephan Zilias is engaged as 1. Kapellmeister at the Bonn Opera House. There, he has conducted critically acclaimed productions and performances of Madama Butterfly, La Bohème, Lucia di Lammermoor, Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte, Die Zauberflöte, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Rusalka as well as Fiddler on the Roof, Ronja Räubertochter and Maria de Buenos Aires.
The season 2017/2018 will see him conduct Philip Glass´ Echnaton and Turandot at Opera Bonn, he will also lead performances of Carmen, Le nozze di Figaro and La Traviata. He is also much involved with the education programme of the Beethoven Orchester Bonn, performing in family concerts on numerous occasions. April 2018 will see his debut with the Hofer Symphoniker.
On May 1st 2018 he´ll be awarded with the title of “Associate of the Royal Academy of Music” in London. Each year, England´s oldest music college honours former students who have done major contributions to their specific fields. In the past, artists like Sir Simon Rattle or Michael Nyman have been decorated with the same title.
Stephan Zilias has been named Kapellmeister of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, where his tenure will commence in August 2018. Among other works, he will be conducting performances of La Traviata, Die Zauberflöte, Carmen and Fledermaus.