Baritone Olafur Sigurdarson has been made the first new Honorary Member of the Richard Wagner Association in Saarland (RWV) in twenty years, following this season’s final performance of Der fliegende Holländer at the Saarländisches Staatstheater Saarbrücken on 10 June 2015. The Icelandic singer had received outstanding reviews for his interpretation of the title role in this production.
Olafur Sigurdarson joins the ranks of Astrid Varnay, Catarina Ligendza, Siegmund Nismgern, Siegfried Köhler and Dame Gwyneth Jones, the only five previous recipients of this seldom-bestowed honour. The RWV have chosen the singer because of his “undisputed professionalism and vocal calibre, which have, together with his likeability and endearing manner, made him a favourite of the audience in Saarbrücken”, where he has been a principal artist at the SST since 2008.
Olafur Sigurdarson has not only made a name for himself as a prime interpreter of Wagnerian roles like the title role in The Flying Dutchman, Telramund Lohengrin and Klingsor Parsifal, but also in other roles of the German fach such as Jochanaan Salome, Barak Die Frau ohne Schatten and Pizarro Fidelio. Earlier this month he had his most recent success in the German repertoire with his role debut as Wotan in performances of Act III of Siegfried with the Dortmunder Philharmoniker under Gabriel Feltz, and alongside Andreas Schager, Petra Lang and Ewa Wolak - again to critical acclaim.
He is also in demand as Rigoletto, Iago Otello, Scarpia Tosca and Macbeth.
You can read the press report of the Saarbrückner Zeitung here.