In our newest, exclusive Q&A series #BehindtheCurtain, we’re going ‘backstage’ to ask Canadian opera artists to share their journey and what inspires them. In this installment, bass-baritone Philippe Sly shares what the opera genre has taught him about life. First and foremost: to be resilient & reframe criticism.
Internationally acclaimed French-Canadian bass-baritone Philippe Sly is the first prize winner of the prestigious Concours Musical International de Montréal and a grand prize winner Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He was also awarded Concert of the Year in Romantic, Post-Romantic and Impressionist Music at the 16th annual ceremony of the Prix Opus in Québec.
As a recitalist, Sly has toured Canada with the Debut Atlantic Series and sung at the Toronto Summer Music Festival, in addition to frequently appearing in the Montreal Symphony and Kent Nagano. As a soloist with Yannick Nézet-Séguin, he has performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Orchestre Métropolitain in Montreal. Sly is also featured as Antonio in a recording of Le Nozze di Figaro with Nézet-Séguin at the Baden-Baden Festival on Deutsche Grammophon.
Sly has made debuts on operatic stages across Europe and North America, including the Canadian Opera Company, Paris Opera, Opéra de Lyon, Hamburg Opera, and San Francisco Opera, among many others. Sly’s 2021/22 season includes upcoming engagements at Wiener Staatsoper, Les Violons du Roy, Opéra de Montréal, Orchestre Métropolitain, and Carnegie Hall. Read more on his upcoming season here.
Watch & listen to his full answer below!
Angela Bell is Opera Canada’s Digital Media Specialist. She has held digital and PR roles with various businesses including the Walt Disney Company, Sullivan Entertainment and Toronto International Film Festival.