Baritone Nikolai Putilin is one of the most
exciting and impressive singers to have emerged from Russia in recent years and is highly
sought after by the world’s major opera houses.
Nikolai Putilin’s career commenced in
1984 when he was appointed a principal singer of the Kazan Opera and Ballet Theatre. In
1989 he won the second prize in the International Chaliapin Competition, which first
brought his outstanding talent to the attention of the world. In 1992 he became a
principal soloist of the Kirov Opera at the Mariinski Theatre, and since then he has
become one of the company’s most prized artists, following in the footsteps of Sergei
Leiferkus, Galina Gorchakova and Olga Borodina.
Nikolai Putilin’s resonant and powerful
voice combines with an extremely strong stage presence in both dramatic and lyrical roles.
Possessing and subtly controlling an extreme range of dynamics and colours, he has made a
great impression on international audiences and press in a very wide variety of parts,
appearing as a remarkably maverick actor on stage. His repertoire includes the title roles
in Wagner’s Flying Dutchman, Moussorgsky’s Boris Godunov, Tchaikovsky’s
Eugene Onegin and Mazeppa, Borodin’s Prince Igor, and Verdi’s Rigoletto, Scarpia
in Puccini’s Tosca, John the Baptist in Strauss’s Salome, Rodrigo in
Verdi’s Don Carlos, Ruprecht in Prokofiev’s The Fiery Angel, Iago in
Verdi’s Otello, Klingsor in Wagner’s Parsifal, and Escamillo in Bizet’s
Nikolai Putilin is a much sought after guest
artist at the New York Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Milan La
Scala Opera, and many other opera companies in Europe and the USA. In 1997 he made his
debut at the Salzburg Festival singing Schelkalov in a production of Moussorgsky’s
Boris Godunov, and returned there in 1998 to sing Klingsor in a production of
In 1997 Nikolai Putilin was awarded the
Baltica Prize for Opera Singers, and in 1998 he was the Laureate of the All-Russian
Theatre Prize ‘Casta Diva’ for his performance of Klingsor in Wagner’s
Parsifal. He is a National Artist of Tatarstan.
Nikolai Putilin is such a particular master of
stage disguise that in real life it is hard to recognise the modest, informal and friendly
person as the same powerful and remarkably changing man of characters he becomes on stage.