"There’s a strikingly powerful Giorgio from the Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach."
"Vocally [he] is one of the show's highlights."
"Wojtek Gierlach proved himself a first-rate comedian: his weighty bass and hammy acting made a delightfully incongruous package. This young Pole is on the verge of a major career."
In the 2019/20 season, Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach returns to Welsh National Opera for role debuts as Sparafucile Rigoletto, Parson The Cunning Little Vixen and Procida in David Pountney’s new production of Les vêpres siciliennes. A further role debut as Osmin The Abduction from the Seraglio takes him to Irish National Opera.
Last season he sang Alidoro La Cenerentola at WNO, somewhat of a signature role for him, which he has also performed with Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, Deutsche Oper Berlin and Teatro Maestranza in Seville. He also returned to the roles of Figaro Le nozze di Figaro at Teatr Wielki Poznań, Zbigniew Straszny dwór for Polish National Opera, Rocco Fidelio at WNO, and sang Commendatore Don Giovanni for Opera Wroclawska. On the concert platform, he appeared with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra for Dvořák’s Stabat Mater.
In 2017/18, he made his house debuts at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, as the Priest Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, and at Deutsche Oper am Rhein as Talbot Maria Stuarda. He made his role debut as Rocco Fidelio at Theater St. Gallen, where he previously sang Conte Rodolfo Sonnambula. A favourite at Polish National Opera, he returned to Warsaw to sing Hermes in Rozicky’s Eros i Psyche. Later in the season he sang Oroveso Norma with the Teatre Principal Palma, a role he previously sang at Teatro National Sao Carlos Lisbon, and joined the London Philharmonic Orchestra for Verdi’s Requiem.
At Polish National Opera in Warsaw he has also appeared as Gesler Guillaume Tell, Talbot Maria Stuarda, Colline, Figaro, Raimondo Lucia di Lammermoor, Duce Alfonso Lucrezia Borgia, and Escamillo. Elsewhere in Poland, roles also include Selim Il turco in Italia and King of Clubs The Love for Three Oranges at Krakow Opera, and the title role of Don Giovanni at the Warsaw Mozart Festival.
This biography is for information only and should not be reproduced.
Welsh National Opera (June 2019)
Wojtek Gierlach was an excellent Rocco
Lucien Jenkins, Critics Circle
Penderecki Credo, Warsaw Philharmonic
Wojtek Gierlach sang Credo in unum Deum, Crucifixus est with power
Anna S. Dębowska, Beethoven Association Warsaw
La Cenerentola (Alidoro)
Welsh National Opera (October 2018)
Alidoro was sung by Wojtek Gierlach in one of the star turns of the night: his voice had the velvety authority of Sarastro, albeit on prozac, and he was all magic and atmosphere, impressing with patter and pure cantabile alike.
Benjamin Poore, Bachtrack****
Wojtek Gierlach was an authoritative Alidoro, bringing just the right degree of gravitas to the role, which can easily seem either flippant or over solemn.
Glyn Pursglove, Seen and Heard International
Wojtek Gierlach commands the stage and adds a glorious air of mystery to the role of Alidoro, who is in effect, the Fairy Godmother of the show.
Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (Priest), Royal Opera House
Some notable cameos … Wojtek Gierlach as the Priest and Peter Bronder as the Shabby Peasant … offer highlights among the large cast.
Richard Fairman, Financial Times****
This revival is very strongly cast. Rosie Aldridge as the gang-raped Aksinya, John Daszak’s cuckolded Zinovy, and Wojtek Gierlach’s Priest each compel belief
Michael Church, Independent*****
Wojtek Gierlach a sonorous Priest
Yehuda Shapiro, The Stage****
Gierlach’s voice has huge resonance
Colin Clarke, Seen and Heard International
...the many solo roles were all extremely well sung, notably the sonorous bass of Wojtek Gierlach as the priest
Mark Ronan, Mark Ronan
There are strong cameos … from Wojtek Gierlach as a slippery, corrupt Priest.
Peter Reed, Classical Source*****
Fidelio (Rocco), Theater St. Gallen
What luck that in Polish singer Wojtek Gierlach there is an absolutely wonderful, reliable, clear and charismatic bass singing Rocco; this instils life in the entire work from start to finish and makes this a tonal and musical feast.
Christoph Schlüren, NMZ
The cast is convincing with Wojtek Gierlach as Rocco.
Bettina Kugler, Tagblatt
Wojtek Gierlach's interpretation of Rocco is really excellent; he delights with an unforced sonority in his lower register
Kaspar Sannemann, Oper Aktuell
Notably… Wojtek Gierlach as a touchingly human Rocco
Maria Stuarda (Talbot), Deutsche Oper am Rhein
the Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach ... proved a dignified, full-voiced partner for Golovneva
Christoph Zimmermann, Opera Magazine
CD recording: Nowowiejski Quo Vadis (Peter), Poznan Philharmonic Orchestra
Peter, sung by the outstanding Wojtek Gierlach … [the oratorio] takes the listener on a dramatic journey in an almost cinematic fashion, made utterly convincing by this superb recorded performance.
Ivan Moody, Gramophone
La cenerentola (Alidoro), Den Jyske Opera
The show is driven by Alidoro, sung perfectly by Wojtek Gierlach.
Alidoro was elegantly handled by Wojtek Gierlach.
The bass Wojtek Gierlach is excellent in a sympathetic role.
I Puritani (Giorgio), Den Jyske Opera
Bass Wojtek Gierlach is really excellent in the sizable role of the good uncle who looks out for Elvira.
Thomas Michelsen, Politiken
Wojtek Gierlach as the Protestant pastor and Elvira's uncle is convincing in both [vocal and dramatic] respects.
Ole Straarup, Stiften.dk
The second act is dominated by Wojtek Gierlach, portraying the role of Protestant pastor Giorgio Valton and brother of Elvira's father. Vocally this is one of the show's highlights.
Mogens H Andersson, Operalogg
Il turco in Italia (Selim), Krakow Opera
We were able to enjoy the excellent in terms of acting and vocal soloists, they [included] Wojtek Gierlach (Selim).
I Puritani (Giorgio), Welsh National Opera
... properly thrilling thanks to his partnership with the Giorgio of Wojtek Gierlach. The Polish bass-baritone is much more of a bel cantist, and his mellifluous singing is based on a foundation of excitingly virile tone, making him convincing as the most avuncular figure among the Roundhead-Orangemen. Gierlach captures the character’s goodness and proves again the ‘Cinta di fiori’ is one of the most beautiful things written for that voice on account of not only Bellini’s melodic gifts but also his celebrated way of matching them so intimately with text.
John Allison, Opera
There’s a strikingly powerful Giorgio from the Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach.
Richard Morrison, The Times
David Kempster (Riccardo) and Wojtek Gierlach (Giorgio) spearheaded a stunning supporting cast.
Steph Power, The Guardian
This was a stirring evening, with ... sturdy support from David Kempster as the dogged protestant Riccardo Forth, and Wojtek Gierlach as Sir Giorgio.
Fiona Maddocks, The Guardian
Wojtech Gierlach’s Giorgio Valton had a richness of tone that made him more than simply the avuncular figure who supports Elvira’s wish to marry Arturo, and his duet with Elvira, “Sai com’ardi in petto mio”, gave this gifted Polish bass an equal partnership with Rosa Feola’s outstanding coloratura soprano.
Simon Rees, bachtrack
Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach is splendid as her uncle Giorgio.
Peter Collins, Wales Online
Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach presents a sterling account of Elvira’s uncle, Giorgio Valton.
George Hall, The Stage
Elvira’s uncle Giorgio, Wojtek Gierlach has a warmth and sensitivity that inform both his acting and his fine bass singing.
Michael Kelligan, Theatre in Wales
Guillaume Tell (Gessler) June 2015
Warsaw Teatr Wielki
Excellent singing and acting by Wojtek Gierlach as Gessler.
Jacek Marczyński, Rzeczpospolita
Wojtek Gierlach greatly proved himself as a tyrant psychopath.
Dorota Szwarcman, Polityka
Wojtek Gierlach was admirable.
Wojciech Giczkowski, Teatr dla Was
Alcina (Melisso) October 2014
The English Concert
The bass Wojtek Gierlach was a stentorian Melisso.
Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times
Wojtek Gierlach only got one aria as Melisso, but he sang this with vigorous commitment and throughout the opera was vividly characterful in his recitative.
Wojtek Gierlach’s Melisso ... impressed.
Kevin W Ng, Bachtrack
Bass Wojtek Gierlach ... as Melisso ... sang strongly.
George Grella, New York Classical Review
Wojtek Gierlach’s resonant bass Melisso completed the sublime blend of voices.
Clare Colvin, Express
Wojtek Gierlach, with his solid and even-scaled bass-baritone, was an accurate and imposing Melisso.
Moore Parker, The Opera Critic
Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach was a warmly communicative Melisso.
Christopher Corwin, Parterre
Wojtek Gierlach’s sturdy Melisso sang stylishly.
Anna Picard, The Times
Even the smaller roles emerged in sharp focus: the crisp bass of Wotjek Gierlach as Melisso ... contributed richly to the menu.
Rupert Christiansen, The Daily Telegraph
With regard to men, Wojtek Gierlach's beautiful, warm and flexible bass voice made it regrettable that his role was not longer.
Norma (Oroveso), Teatro Nacional de São Carlos
Lisbon (June 2014)
Equally impressive was bass Wojtek Gierlach, who had a solid and energetic presence in the important role of Oroveso.
Manuel Pedro Ferreira, Publico
Wojtek Gierlach (Oroveso) gave an excellent interpretation, convincingly performing the difficult musical phrasing that Bellini was always so keen to compose for the male roles in his operas.
Zita Ferreira Braga, Hardmusica
The cast was much more balanced…with noteable performances from Patrizia Biccirè and Wojtek Gierlach.
Bernardo Mariano, Diário de Notícias
Polish bass Wojtek Gierlach sang Oroveso with a pleasing timbre, giving a memorable performance.
Ana Rocha, Expresso
Semiramide (Assur) December 2012
Royal Danish Opera, Copenhagen
On the male side, I was particularly impressed with Wojtek Gierlach as the demigod Prince Assur.
Special attention should be paid to Polish bass, Wojtek Gierlach, as Assur... [who] combines intense stage presence with technical mastery.
Erik Exe Christoffersen, Peripeti
Beethoven Symphony No.9 (March 2011)
Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra
In the demanding vocal parts, bass W. Gierlach was the most convincing of all the soloists. Gifted with a dark, succulent voice, he showed an aptitude for projecting his upper register.
Diario de Noticias
L’Italiana in Algieri (Mustafa) October 2007
And as Mustafà, the Bey of Algiers - simpatico despite his casual allusions to impalement - Wojtek Gierlach proved himself a first-rate comedian: his weighty bass and hammy acting made a delightfully incongruous package. This young Pole is on the verge of a major career.
Larry Fuchsberg, Opera News
But Rossini's score and director Helena Binder's interpretation allow everyone on stage an opportunity to show off their vocal and comedic capabilities. In both regards, Wojtek Gierlach is a standout as Mustafa.
Rob Hubbard, The Twin Cities Newspaper
Wojtek Gierlach's Concert Repertoire
Mass in C Major
Mass in F Minor
Saint Cecilia Mass
Symphony No. 1
Dettingen Te Deum
Die Schöpfung (The Creation)
St Matthew Passion (Jesus)
Ivan the Terrible
Messa di Gloria
Petite Messe Solennelle
The Passion of Jesus Christ
Requiem for Mignon
Die sieben Todsünden
Wojtek Gierlach's Opera Repertoire
Fidelio (Rocco, Don Fernando)
Il Dissoluto Punito (Commendatore)
Lodoiska (Baron de Dourlinski)
Lucia di Lammermoor (Raimondo)
Monbar (Don Alonzo)
Orfeo ed Euridice (Orfeo)
The Cunning Little Vixen (Parson)
Medea In Corinto (Creonte)
L'Italiana in Algeri (Mustafa)
Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni/Leporello/Commendatore)
The Love for Three Oranges (The King of Clubs)
La Bohème (Colline)
Mozart and Salieri (Salieri)
Ciro in Babilonia (Zambri)
Eros i Psyche (Hermes)
Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (Pope)
Der Berggeist (Domoslav)
Les vêpres siciliennes (Procida)*
Euryanthe (King Ludwig the 7th)
|*Denotes role not yet performed|