László Polgár (singer)

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László Polgár (born January 1, 1947 in Somogyszentpál , southwestern Hungary, † September 19, 2010 in Zurich ) was a Hungarian opera singer with a bass vocal subject .


Polgár studied singing at the Franz Liszt Music Academy in Budapest from 1967 to 1972 ; He received further singing lessons from Hans Hotter and from Jewgenij Nesterenko . He began his operatic career in 1972 at the Hungarian State Opera in Budapest as Count Ceprano in Verdi's opera Rigoletto . In the beginning he mostly sang smaller parts and Comprimario roles. From the mid-1970s he got bigger roles. In 1978 he took part in the world premiere of Sándor Balassa's opera Outside Front Door at the Budapest State Opera . In 1982 he sang the Leporello in Don Giovanni , in 1983 Gurnemanz in Parsifal and in 1990 Father Guardian in Die Macht des Schicksals .

In 1978 he made his first guest appearance abroad. At the Hamburg State Opera he sang Osmin in Mozart's Singspiel Die Entführung aus dem Serail . In 1981 he gave a guest performance at the Royal Opera House in London as Conte Rodolfo in La sonnambula . Further engagements abroad followed at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels (1982), 1982 at the Philadelphia Opera House , 1983 at the Berlin State Opera and 1986 at the Paris Opera .

From 1985 he sang regularly at the Salzburg Festival . In 1985/1986 he appeared as Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte , 1987 as Publio in La clemenza di Tito , 1996 as Priest in Moses und Aron , 1999 as Wagner in Doktor Faust , 2001 in the title role of Duke Bluebeard's Castle and 2003 in Die Bakchantinnen von Egon Wellesz on. From 1986 to 1991 he had a permanent guest contract with the Vienna State Opera . There he appeared as Sarastro, Leporello, Publio, Pater Guardian, Colline in La Bohème , Timur in Turandot and as a hermit in Der Freischütz . In 1989 he sang Sarastro at the Savonlinna Opera Festival .

From 1991 to 2009 Polgár was a permanent member of the ensemble at the Zurich Opera House , where he continued as a guest singer even after his official retirement. The focal points of his repertoire there were the bass roles in the operas of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the Italian bel canto operas. In Zurich he sang Sarastro, Phanuél in Hérodiade by Jules Massenet , Oroveso in Norma , the title role in Duke Bluebeard's Castle , Sir Giorgio in I puritani , Enrico in Anna Bolena , Sparafucile in Rigoletto , Rocco in Fidelio , Leporello in Don Giovanni and most recently in 2010 Conte Walter in Luisa Miller .

At the same time he made guest appearances at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich as Leporello, Timur and Sparafucile, in 1991 at the Nice Opera as Leporello, at the Teatro Bellini (1991 as Conte Rodolfo), at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie (1992 as Basilio in Der Barbier von Sevilla) ), at the Scala in Milan (1995 in Bluebeard's Castle , 2001 as Conte Walter), at the Lausanne Opera (1997 as Rocco in Fidelio ), at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées (1997 also as Rocco), at the Teatro Colón (1998 as Osmin), at the Deutsche Oper Berlin (2000 as Gurnemanz) and at the Edinburgh Festival (2001).

In addition to his opera appearances, Polgár often appeared as a concert singer, especially in oratorios, masses and sacred cantatas. He has given concerts in Hungary, Italy, France and Canada. In 1984 and 1987 he sang the bass solo in Joseph Haydn's oratorio The Creation at Carnegie Hall in New York . His concert repertoire also included the Missa solemnis and the Verdi Requiem .

Since 1978 Polgár was a professor at the Budapest Music Academy and taught at the Zurich Opera Studio. In 1990 he was awarded the Kossuth Prize . In 1998 he received a Grammy Award for his recording of Bluebeard's Castle with Jessye Norman , the conductor Pierre Boulez and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra . Polgár lived in the Zollikerberg in the municipality of Zollikon .


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. László Polgár  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Role directory; Archive Salzburg Festival@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / www.salzburgerfestspiele.at  
  2. ^ Chronicle of the Vienna State Opera 1945–2005 , p. 667. Löcker Verlag, Vienna 2006. ISBN 3-85409-449-3
  3. NZZ of February 28, 2002


  1. ^ According to Kutsch / Riemens on December 31, 1946