Praised for the depth and richness of his voice, Vitalij Kowaljow has established himself in recent years as one of the leading basses in the opera scene. Among his more than 40 performed roles are Verdi`s Filippo II in Don Carlo, Fiesco in Simon Boccanegra, Zaccaria in Nabucco, Banco in Macbeth, Ramphis in Aida. Moreover, he has been acclaimed as Kaspar in Der Freischütz, Mephistopheles in Faust, Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte, and such in Russian language roles as Prince Igor, Pimen in Boris Godunov and Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin.
Vitalij Kowaljow was introduced to the USA by the Opera Orchestra of New York as Baldassare in La Favorita and has sung since then at Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco, Washington Opera, Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia Opera Companies. He has collaborated with various European companies including Royal Opera House in London, Opéra National de Paris, Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, Wiener Staatsoper, Teatro alla Scala, Arena di Verona and Semperoper Dresden.
In 2010 he debuted to great acclaim the roles of Wotan and Der Wanderer in the Los Angeles Opera new production of Wagner’s Ring Cycle, conducted by James Conlon and staged by Achim Freyer. The success of his performance led to an invitation from Daniel Barenboim to reprise the role in the season opening production of Die Walküre at La Scala in 2011.
Vitalij Kowaljow’s recordings include La Bohème (Deutsche Grammophon 2008), Leoncavallo’s I Medici (Deutsche Grammophon 2010) and Don Giovanni (Deutsche Grammophon 2012). He also stars as Colline in a feature film release of Puccini’s La bohème, directed by Oscar and Emmy nominated director Robert Dornhelm.
Recent highlights of his career include Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Veit Pogner) conducted Christian Thielemann at the Easter Festival Salzburg, Iolanta (king René) at Palau de Les Arts in Valencia and at Metropolitan New York, La forza del destino (Padre Guardiano) at Semperoper Dresden, Aida (Ramphis) at Arena di Verona and at Teatro alla Scala, Lucia di Lammermoor (Raimondo) at Metropolitan New York, Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried (Wotan) at Semperoper Dresden under the baton of Christian Thielemann.