Kristinn Sigmundsson (born 1 March 1951) is an Icelandic bass who for the past 20 years has been one of Iceland’s best known international opera singers. Having initially obtained a degree in biology from the University of Iceland, he first worked for some time as a teacher before commencing his song studies under Guðmundur Jónsson at the Reykjavik Academy of Singing.
Later, he studied at the Hochschule für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna, Austria, under Helene Karusso, Christian Möller and Wolfgang Gabriel. Between 1984 and 1985 he studied in Washington, D.C. with John Bullock, who he claims improved his singing dramatically.
The singer has subsequently performed in many of the leading European and US opera houses and concert halls, including those in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Florence, Geneva, Hamburg, Cologne, Milan, New York and Paris. Also, he has appeared with a number of well-known conductors, such as James Levine, Riccardo Muti, Bernard Haitink and Sir Colin Davis.
Kristinn Sigmundsson began his freelance career in 1992 and now regularly sings at the Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden, L'Opéra de Paris, Staatsoper Vienna, Staatsoper Munich and Semperoper Dresden. Recent opera roles have included Rocco in Fidelio in New York, Osmin in Il ratto dal serraglio (Die Entführung aus dem Serail) in Trieste (May 2006), Baron Ochs in Der Rosenkavalier in Munich (June 2006), Mustafa in L'italiana in Algeri in Vienna (June 2006), King Marke in Wagner's Tristan und Isolde in San Francisco (September 2006), and Landgrave Herrmann in Tannhäuser in Amsterdam (January/February 2007). From April to July 2007, Sigmundsson sang the roles of Méphistophélès (in Dresden) and Il Commendatore and Baron Ochs (in San Francisco). He repeated the latter role in the Met's revival of Rosenkavalier in January 2010
The bass has made a number of recordings, including Sarastro in Arnold Östman's version of the Magic Flute, and Commendatore in his version of Don Giovanni. The latter was awarded the French Diapason d'or and the German Schallplattenpreis. He also sang the role of Christ in Frans Brüggen's recordings of Bach's St John Passion and St Matthew Passion. Other recordings include a set of opera arias with the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra and Arnold Östman, and Schubert's Schwanengesang and Winterreise with pianist Jónas Ingimundarson.
- "Réttur maður á réttum stað" [The right man in the right place]. Fréttablaðið. 19 August 1995. p. 18. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
- "The bass Kristinn Sigmundsson is a suitably boorish and vocally booming Baron Ochs", New York Times, 10 January 2010
- Biographical page on bach-cantatas.com Retrieved 25 January 2010
- Kristinn's profile on Guy Barzilay Artists management, accessed 25 January 2010
- Kristinn's biographical page on San Francisco Opera's website, accessed 25 January 2010