Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel has performed in all the great opera houses of the world, and is especially recognized for his portrayals of Figaro, Falstaff and Wotan. He made his operatic début in 1990 as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte for Welsh National Opera. His international operatic career began in 1991 when he sang the Speaker in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte at the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels and in the same year he made his United States debut as Figaro at the Santa Fe Opera. Terfel made his San Francisco Opera debut in the title role of Le Nozze di Figaro in 1997 and returned in 2000 as Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress. Other roles performed during his acclaimed career include the title role of Der Fliegende Holländer, Méphistophélès in Faust, both the title role and Leporello in Don Giovanni, Jochanaan in Salome, Scarpia in Tosca, the title role of Gianni Schicchi, Wolfram in Tannhäuser, Balstrode in Peter Grimes, the Four Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Dulcamara in L’Elisir d’Amore, and the title role in Sweeney Todd.
Known for his versatility as a concert performer, Terfel’s other career highlights include performing at the the opening ceremony of the Wales Millennium Centre, BBC Last Night of the Proms, and the Royal Variety Show to a gala concert with Andrea Bocelli in Central Park, New York. He has given recitals in the major cities of the world and for nine years hosted his own festival in Faenol, North Wales.
He is a Grammy, Classical Brit, and Gramophone Award winner with a discography encompassing operas of Mozart, Wagner and Strauss, and more than ten solo discs including Lieder, American musical theater, Welsh songs, and sacred repertory. In 2003, Bryn was made a CBE for services to Opera in the Queen’s New Year Honors list and in 2006 was awarded the Queen’s Medal for Music. He is also the last recipient of the Shakespeare Prize by the Alfred Toepfer Foundation, Hamburg.
Highlights in recent years include Terfel’s debut in the role of Hans Sachs in the critically acclaimed production of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg for Welsh National Opera, his return to Milan’s La Scala to open the 2011 season singing Leporello in Don Giovanni and Scarpia in Tosca, Wotan in Wagner’s Ring cycle for the Royal Opera, Covent Garden and the Metropolitan Opera, the title role in Der Fliegende Holländer for Zurich Opera, Scarpia for Munich’s Bavarian State Opera, and host to a four day festival, Brynfest, at the Southbank Centre, London as part of the Southbank Centre’s Festival of the World.