The Swiss tenor François Piolino was born in Basle. After completing his vocal training at the Conservatoire de Lausanne and the Guildhall School in London he was awarded First Prize at the Conservatoire National Supérieur in Paris. For the last few years he has been honing his vocal skills with the tenor Guy Flechter. An initial career in baroque music, primarily with William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, enabled him to acquire a solid foundation to tackle the next chapter in his professional life which naturally led towards opera. Specialising in character roles, he has performed on some of the most celebrated stages, including those in Paris (Bastille, Garnier, Châtelet), Lyon, Nancy, Strasbourg, Aix-en-Provence, and Geneva, not to mention the Opéra royal de Wallonie, the Berlin Staatsoper, and Glyndebourne…
He has worked with numerous directors including Laurent Pelly, Patrice Caurier and Moshe Leiser, Robert Wilson, Jean-Louis Martinoty, Francesca Zambello, Günter Krämer, Christoph Marthaler, Robert Carsen, Jean-François Sivadier, Mariame Clément, and Olivier Py. He has sung under the baton of Michel Plasson, Ivan Fischer, Pinchas Steinberg, Bernhard Kontarsky, Lawrence Foster, Hartmut Haenchen, Jérémie Rohrer, Charles Dutoit, Jeffrey Tate and Philippe Jordan. His numerous roles include Don Basilio (The Marriage of Figaro), Goro (Madama Butterfly), Caius (Falstaff), Pang (Turandot), Monsieur Triquet (Eugene Onegin), not to forget his much acclaimed performance as the Novice in Billy Budd at the Opéra Bastille. Thanks to his consummate command of German, he is able to sing numerous roles including the Jews (Salomé), Mr. Taupe (Capriccio), Scaramuccio (Ariadne auf Naxos), Valzacchi (Der Rosenkavalier) and one of his favourite roles, Monostatos (The Magic Flute) which he has sung all around the world.
François Piolino is also fond of the French repertoire: Le Remendado (Carmen), Guillot de Mortfontaine (Manon), Schmidt (Werther), the four valets in The Tales of Hoffmann, the Chaplin in Dialogues des Carmélites, the three tenor roles in L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, and Pitou in Offenbach’s Geneviève de Brabant, which he has just performed at the Lorraine Opera. Last season he made his Covent Garden debut in Chabrier's L’Étoile.
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