After studying violin in Vienna and Freiburg, the Rottweil-born director Johannes Erath first worked as a musician at the Vienna Volksoper and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra Academy. He then switched to directing and assisted Willy Decker, Nicolas Brieger, Guy Joosten, Peter Konwitschny and Graham Vick, among others, throughout Europe. In 2002 he was engaged as a stage manager at the Hamburg State Opera and from 2005 to 2007 he was a scholarship holder at the Akademie Musiktheater heute of the Deutsche Bank Foundation. Since 2006 he has worked as a freelance director at major opera houses such as the State Operas in Munich and Hamburg, the Semperoper Dresden, Oper Köln, Oper Frankfurt, the Theater an der Wien and De Nationale Opera in Amsterdam as well as the Bregenz Festival, where he staged Berthold Goldschmidt's "Beatrice Cenci" and Miroslav Srnka's "Make no Noise". In 2008 he received the Götz Friedrich Prize for his production of Massenet's "Cendrillon" at the Bern Opera. Johannes Erath has worked with the Graz Opera for many years under the artistic direction of Elisabeth Sobotka. There he was awarded the Austrian Music Theatre Prize in 2016 for his interpretation of Korngold's "Die tote Stadt".
At the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Johannes Erath created the music theatre evening "Vissi d'arte" as a commentary on the Corona crisis. After staging Bellini's "La sonnambula" in the 2022/23 season, the specialist for new music presents his interpretation of Manfred Trojahn's world premiere "Septembersonate" this season.