Matti Salminen (b. 1945) is one of the most highly regarded bass singers of our time. At the moment, he is engaged at the Zurich Opera but also appears regularly at the world’s leading opera houses in Vienna, London, Paris, Berlin, Munich, New York (the Metropolitan), Los Angeles, Valencia, Barcelona and Milan (La Scala), and also at the Finnish National Opera, where he made his stage début in the role of Filip II in Verdi’s Don Carlos in 1969 at the age of 26.
He began his international career at the Cologne Opera in 1971 and has since appeared at major venues and festivals, including the Bayreuth Music Festival (155 performances), the Salzburg Music Festival since the time of Herbert von Karajan and the Savonlinna Opera Festival since 1967.
Matti Salminen’s opera repertoire includes some 40 bass roles; his current preference is for Gurnemanz in Wagner’s Parsifal, Hagen in Götterdämmerung, Marke in Tristan und Isolde, the title role in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov and Filip in Don Carlos. He also enjoyed appearing in the title roles of Aulis Sallinen’s King Lear (2000) and Einojuhani Rautavaara’s Rasputin (2003).
Matti Salminen feels a special affinity to young Finnish singers. Each year, he distributed scholarships from his foundation to emerging singers and also mentors them in creating a career abroad.