Franz-Josef Selig

Bass
© Marion Koell
General Management

Franz-Josef Selig is internationally one of the most renowned singers of the roles of the serious bass fach such as Gurnemanz, King Marke, Sarastro, Rocco, Osmin, Daland, Fiesco and Fasolt and at all the great opera houses of the world (among others Bavarian State Opera, Vienna State Opera, Milan's La Scala, Teatro Real Madrid, the Paris opera houses to the Metropolitan Opera New York) as well as at prestigious festivals such as the Bayreuther Festival, Baden Baden and Salzburg and the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence. Well known orchestras and conductors have been and continue to be his partners, including Christian Thielemann, Sir Simon Rattle, Marek Janowski, Zubin Mehta, Semyon Bychkov, Riccardo Muti, Yannick Nezét-Séguin, Antonio Pappano, Philippe Jordan, Daniel Harding and many others.

The artist completed his studies in sacred music at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Cologne before making the move to the singing class of Claudio Nicolai. His start in the profession came in the form of a contract as an ensemble member of the Aalto-Theater in Essen, a position he held for six years, before embarking on his freelance career.

The season 2023/2024 starts with a concert version of the third act of Wagner's Parsifal under the baton of David Afkham at the Auditorio Nacional de la Musica in Madrid. At the Vienna Konzerthaus he sings Beethoven's 9th Symphony under the baton of Omer Meir Weilber, a concert version of Tristan und Isolde under the baton of Robin Ticciati in Berlin and at the Tokyo Spring Festival under the baton of Marek Janowski, and Franz Schmidt's Das Buch mit sieben Siegeln under the baton of Fabio Luisi in three concerts in Dallas. 

Numerous international opera projects are also on the programme: at the Hamburg State Opera he will perform as Daland in Wagner's Der fliegende Holländer and as Rocco in Beethoven's Fidelio. In Munich he will be heard as Osmin in the reopening of Mozart's Die Entführung aus dem Serail and as Arkel in Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande. In Toulouse he will also be heard as Arkel in Pelléas et Mélisande, and this summer he will perform the role of King Marke in Wagner's Tristan und Isolde at Glyndebourne Festival Opera.

Lieder recitals with Gerold Huber have taken him to the Liedwoche at Schloss Elmau and the Konzerthaus Dortmund, among others.

Numerous CD and DVD productions demonstrate the artistic range of this exceptional singer - from Bach's St Matthew Passion to Mozart's Magic Flute (Royal Opera London/Sir Colin Davis), Don Giovanni (Vienna State Opera/Riccardo Muti), Le nozze di Figaro (Salzburg Festival/Nikolaus Harnoncourt), Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Gran Teatre del Liceu/Ivor Bolton/Christoph Loy) to L'incoronazione di Poppea (Gran Teatre del Liceu/David Alden/Harry Bicket).

He has recorded the role of Gurnemanz in Wagner's Parsifal with Christian Thielemann (Vienna State Opera, released by Deutsche Grammophon) as well as with Marek Janowski and the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin (Pentatone). The DVD of the production Der Ring des Nibelungen (DG, Metropolitan Opera New York production, 2010) with Franz-Josef Selig as Fasolt won the Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording in 2013. A DVD of Der Fliegende Holländer from 2013 has since been released by the Bayreuth Festival (Thielemann/Gloger). On his CD Prometheus (label AVI, 2013), accompanied by Gerold Huber, he combines songs by Schubert, Wolf and Strauss. In July 2015, Deutsche Grammophon released Mozart's Entführung aus dem Serail, conducted by Yannick Nezét-Séguin (production summer 2014 at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden) and, more recently, Die Zauberflöte (production spring 2018 at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden).




9. July 2024 - 19:00

München, Prinzregententheater

Achille-Claude Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande

Info & Tickets



11. July 2024 - 19:00

München, Prinzregententheater

Achille-Claude Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande

Info & Tickets



14. July 2024 - 19:00

München, Prinzregententheater

Achille-Claude Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande

Info & Tickets



  • "Die Besetzung entspricht in allen Positionen dem Niveau, wie es von einem Haus wie der Wiener Staatsoper zurecht erwartet wird. Franz-Josef Selig ist mit seinem profunden Bass ein in sich ruhender, souveräner Gurnemanz, der sich mit eloquenter Autorität zwischen den Grals- bzw. Gefängnisinsassen bewegt und dort auch mit seinen versierten Fertigkeiten als Tätowieren für Ausgleich sorgt. Michael Nagy als ein ausdrucksstarker Amfortas verkörpert glaubhaft Titurels, von Wolfgang Bankl energisch aus dem Off beigesteuerte Mahnung, dass er im Dienste seine Schuld zu büßen habe."
    nmz
    Joachim Lange: "Durchzittert und vergittert – Kirill Serebrennikovs „Parsifal“-Inszenierung in Wien", in: nmz, 08.04.2023
  • "Selig’s is truly a hugely imposing instrument, thrillingly resonant in its lower reaches, switching from the sepulchral to saturnine to mellow with ease. He proved to be a consummate communicator of the narratives, relishing the descriptive poetry as well, alive to every mood and inflection."
    Classical Source
    Alexander Campbell, „Franz-Josef Selig & Gerold Huber at Wigmore Hall – Carl Loewe, Hugo Wolf, Rudi Stephan“, in: www.classicalsource.com, 22.06.2019
  • „Franz-Josef Selig singt mit unangestrengtem, substanzreichem Bass einen tiefenentspannten Sarastro.“
    Badische Zeitung
    Georg Rudiger, „Der forcierende Vogelfänger“, in: Badische Zeitung, 10.07.2018
  • “Franz-Josef Selig (Gurnemanz) hat einen über einstündigen Monolog ab Vorspielende bis Verwandlung kurz vor Totenmessenanbeginn zu absolvieren; seine Textverständlichkeit muss als grandios bezeichnet sein, und sein sonorer Bass hat fast schon auswüchsiges Edelmaß. Der Mann ist als gesangliches Gesamtkunstwerk sensationell!!”



Elisabeth Ehlers

Elisabeth Ehlers

Director, General Management
e-mail
+49 89 44488790
Katharina Klapsing

Katharina Klapsing

Associate Artist Manager
On maternity leave.
Sophie Kurzbauer

Sophie Kurzbauer

e-mail
Assistant Artist Manager
+49 89 444887910

  HIGHLIGHTS 2023/2024