The Scene


Philippe Sly

Philippe Sly
Photo by Adam Scotti


French-Canadian bass-baritone Philippe Sly is already gaining international notoriety for his “beautiful, blooming tone and magnetic stage presence” (San Francisco Chronicle). Mr. Sly is the first prize winner of the prestigious 2012 Concours Musical International de Montréal and a grand prize winner of the 2011 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions singing the varied repertoire of Mozart, Bach, Handel, Stravinsky and Wagner. Recently, he was awarded Concert of the Year in Romantic, Post-Romantic and Impressionist Music at the 16th annual ceremony of the Prix Opus in Québec.

In the 2014 – 2015 season, Philippe Sly returns to the San Francisco Opera as Ormonte in Handel’s Partenope and as Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro. He will make his French debut at Opéra Comique in Paris in Boesmann’s Au monde. In concert, he will appear with the Montreal Symphony and Kent Nagano in Honegger’s L’Aiglon which will be commercially recorded. He also appears with the Philadelphia Orchestra in Bach’s Matthäus-Passion under Yannick Nézet-Séguin, as well as the Toronto Symphony, Newfoundland Symphony and Montreal Symphony in Handel’s Messiah. Future seasons will see him at San Francisco Opera, Glyndebourne Festival, Canadian Opera Company, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Montreal Symphony Orchestra under Kent Nagano, among others.

Philippe Sly continued as an Adler Fellow at the San Francisco Opera in the 2013 – 2014 season where he was seen as Bartolo in San Francisco Opera’s Barber for Families. He opened the Montreal Symphony Orchestra’s season as Méphistophélès in concert performances of Berlioz’s La damnation de Faust under Kent Nagano and made his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte under Gustavo Dudamel in a production by Christopher Alden. In concert, Mr. Sly made his Philadelphia Orchestra debut in Fauré’s Requiem under Alain Altinglou and with Orchestre Métropolitain in Montreal in Bach’s Matthäus-Passion under Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Additional concert engagements included Handel’s Messiah at the National Arts Centre and with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra; Handel’s Solomon with Bernard Labadie and Violons du Roy; and concerts of Fauré, Handel, and Haydn with Orchestre Symphonique de Québec.

In the 2012 – 2013 season, Mr. Sly became a member of the prestigious Adler Fellowship Program at the San Francisco Opera where he made his mainstage debut as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte under music director Nicola Luisotti to great critical acclaim. On the concert stage, he sang Mozart’s Requiem with Pro Coro Canada in Edmonton, Brahms’s Ein deutsches Requiem with the Ottawa Bach Choir, and Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Ottawa Choral Society, among others. In recital, he toured Canada in recital with the Debut Atlantic Series and was heard at the Toronto Summer Music Festival with pianist Julius Drake. Mr. Sly was a Révélation Radio-Canada artist for the 2012-2013 season.

After winning the MET National Council Auditions, Mr. Sly became a member of the ensemble at the Canadian Opera Company in the 2011 – 2012 season where he was seen as Hermann in Les contes d’Hoffmann, Amantio di Nicolai in a new production of Gianni Schicchi directed by Catherine Malfitano and conducted by Andrew Davis, as well as A Scythian Man in Iphigénie en Tauride alongside the Iphigénie of Susan Graham. In the summer of 2012, Mr. Sly joined the Young Singers Project at the Salzburg Festival where he made his Festival debut as Sithos in von Winter’s Das Labyrinth under the baton of Ivor Bolton. He also sang Bach’s St. John Passion with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra under music director Kent Nagano and was soloist with the Malaysian Philharmonic in Kuala Lumpur in a concert of opera arias. As a recitalist, Mr. Sly performed with the Canadian Chamber Players in Ottawa and performed in recital in Montreal, Paris, London, and The Hague.

Mr. Sly holds a Bachelor of Music degree in voice performance from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music in Montreal. He is also an alumnus of San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program where he performed the role of Dr. Barolo in Il barbiere di Siviglia. His roles at McGill University include Marcello in La bohème and Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress. A recording artist with Analekta Records, his first solo album entitled “In Dreams” was released in October 2012 to great critical acclaim, followed by an all-Rameau album entitled “Les amants trahis” with Hélène Guilmette and Luc Beauséjour.

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