French bass-baritone Paul Gay is internationally renowned for his portrayals of leading roles in the French repertoire. He collaborates with conductors such as Ivan Fischer, Seiji Ozawa, Michel Plasson, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Semyon Bychkov, Philippe Jordan, Alain Altinoglu, William Christie and Emmanuelle Haïm. Paul has been invited for new productions by Willy Decker, Luc Bondy, Peter Stein, Richard Jones, Claus Guth, Laurent Pelly, Krzysztof Warlikowski, and Robert Carsen.
His main repertoire includes Golaud (Pelléas et Melisande), a role he has sung at the Paris Opera, at La Monnaie Brussels, in Frankfurt, Torino and in Lyon, Mephisto (Faust), which he has been invited to sing at the Paris Opera, the Maggio Musicale Firenze and the Bordeaux Opera. Other signature roles include Saint François, which he debuted in a new production at the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich, where he also appeared in productions of Der Zwerg, I Capuletti e i Montecchi, and L’Enfant et les sortilèges.
Paul is a regular guest at the Paris Opera where his roles have included Don Fernando (Fidelio), Harasta (The Cunning Little Vixen), Achilla (Giulio Cesare), Don Diègue (Le Cid), Flint (Billy Budd) and Le Comte des Grieux (Manon). He also appears regularly in Brussels, Frankfurt and Lyon and he made his North American debut as Escamillo (Carmen) at the Canadian Opera Company. He has also taken part in several contemporary creations including ‘L’Ecole des Femmes’ by Rolf Liebermann at the Bordeaux Opera and Philippe Boesman’s opera Yvonne Princesse de Bourgogne, a production seen in Paris, Brussels and Vienna.
After completing his studies and winning a ‘Premier Prix’ at the Paris Conservatory, Paul went to gain his first operatic experience as a company member in Osnabrück, performing roles such as Colline (La bohème), Walter (Luisa Miller) and the title role of Don Quichotte. He gained attention as a prize-winner in several international vocal competitions and has continued his vocal development by taking lessons in Cologne with the acclaimed bass Kurt Moll.
Recent and future projects include the title role of Oedipe by Enescu in London and Bucharest under the baton of Vladimir Jurowsky, Ramfis in Aïda in Hong Kong, Gounod’s Méphistophélès in Monte-Carlo, L’Enfant et les sortilèges by Ravel conducted by Seiji Ozawa with the Berlin Philharmonic, Escamillo in Antwerp, Athlet and Tierbändiger in Lulu at the Enescu festival, Vieillard Hébreu in Samson et Dalila as well as Nourabad in Pearl Fishers, both at Staatsoper unter den Linden Berlin, Golaud in Pelleas et Melisande in Switzerland, Sparafucile in Rigoletto in Rouen and Paris, and the Marquis in Dialogues des Carmelites at the Glyndebourne Festival.