Guest of the Opera
Born in Slovakia, Štefan Kocán, one of the international leading basses of the younger generation, celebrates successes on major stages all over the world. He studied voice at the University of Performing Arts in Bratislava and continued his studies at the Vienna Conservatory under the tutelage of the bass Yevgeny Nesterenko. He attained success at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, Hommage à Lucia Popp in Bratislava and the Belvedere Competition in Vienna. After completing his studies, he became a member of the Opera ensemble of the Landestheater in Linz, Austria, where he portrayed Sarastro (Mozart: Die Zauberflöte), Raimondo (Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor), Verdi’s Philip II (Don Carlos) and Banco (Macbeth), Kecal (Smetana: The Bartered Bride) and other parts. In the 2003/2004 season he received the Eberhard Waechter Medal for his performance as the Grand Inquisitor in Verdi’s Don Carlos. Subsequently, he debuted in this role and the role of Il Commendatore (Mozart: Don Giovanni) on the stage of Wiener Staatsoper, since when he has regularly appeared as a guest. He has also performed at La Scala in Milan, the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Chicago Lyric Opera, Gran Teatro del Liceu in Barcelona, the Royal Danish Opera, Opéra de Nice, Opéra National de Paris, Teatro Communale in Modena, Teatro Ferrara, Theatre Basel, Aalto-Theatre in Essen, Staatstheater in Kassel, Staatsoper in Hannover, the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava and the National Theatre in Prague. On these stages he has sung, for example, Mozart’s Osmin (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Il Commendatore (Don Giovanni) and the Voice of the Oracle (Idomeneo), Mustafa (Rossini: L’Italiana in Algeri), Philip II and the Grand Inquisitor (Don Carlos), the King of Clubs (Prokofiev: Love for Three Oranges), Smetana’s Kecal (The Bartered Bride) and Dvořák’s The Water Goblin (Rusalka).
In October 2009, Štefan Kocán debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in New York as the King (Verdi: Aida), since when he has regularly appeared as Sparafucile in Rigoletto, Ferrando in Il trovatore, Il Commendatore in Don Giovanni, Ramfis in Aida and the Grand Inquisitor in Don Carlos on the Met tour in Japan (June 2011). In the 2012/2013 season he sang along Ramfis and Sparafucile at the Met also the title role of Verdi‘s Attila at the Teatro Municipal de Santiago de Chile, Il Commendatore at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Masetto (Mozart: Don Giovanni) and Banco (Macbeth) at La Scala in Milan, or Philip II in Don Carlo at the National Theatre in Prague and Ramfis at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. His engagements for the 2013/2014 season included roles of the Grand Inquisitor and Philip II at La Scala in Milan (October 2013), Konchak (Borodin: Prince Igor), Gremin (Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin), Sparafucile at the Metropolitan opera (from November 2013 to March 2014) and his debut as Bluebeard (Bartók: Bluebeard’s Castle) at the Vlaamse Opera in Antwerp and Ghent (April and May 2014). In the first half of 2015, he will create the title role in Boito’s Mefistofele at the Prague State Opera, Leporello in Don Giovanni at the Vlaamse Opera in Antwerp and Ramfis at the Metropolitan Opera.
Update: September 2014