Vyatcheslav Kagan-Paley was born in Gomel, Belarus.As a child, he studied violin and piano. In 1976, he won the first television and radio competition for young performers in Minsk, as a singer. Kagan-Paley continued his violin studies at the Belarusian State Conservatory, and, in 1987, he began singing at the Belarusian Academic Capella. This same year he made his debut as a soprano soloist in Schumann's Requiem with the Leningrad Philharmonic. Two years later, Dr. Irina Antonova, the director of the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow, invited Kagan-Paley to give a recital there, and this resulted in several engagements including The Vienna State Opera, various recordings and television appearances. The talents of the young singer were greatly appreciated by Leonard Bernstein who, after meeting him in St. Petersburg in the summer of 1989, planned to arrange joint performances; unfortunately, the Maestro's untimely death put an end to these plans.
Kagan-Paley was soon after awarded a grant by the Oppenheimer Charitable Trust, and from 1989 to 1992 he completed the post-diploma vocal training course under Professor David Pollard at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. In 1993, he completed the Opera Course and he attended Masterclasses with Graham Johnson and Geoffrey Parsons. His opera debut, in 1992, as Oberon in Benjamin Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Guildhall was greeted with great public and critical acclaim.
His international career started in 1993 when he performed the role of Joan of Arc in the world premiere of Arms for the Maid for the Royal Opera House Garden Venture. Since then, he has traveled extensively giving recitals in Russia, the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom. In Germany, the Czech Republic and Hungary, he sang the role of The Witch in the opera Rapunzel by Lou Harrison, with the Prague Mozart Foundation. He has been a Guest Performer at the Normandy Music Festival in France, the "December Nights" Festivals in Moscow with the Moscow Soloists and Yuri Bashmet and the St. Petersburg Seasons Festival. His collaboration with the distinguished Russian pianist, Boris Beresovsky, resulted in a series of concerts in Russia, Japan and England. After their recital at Leighton House, London, The Times described Kagan-Paley's voice as "a diamond among voices."
During 1996, Kagan-Paley gave many recitals in Europe and Japan and he toured the United Kingdom with the Rambert Dance Company. In March 1998, he performed in the world premiere of Péter Eötvös' opera Trois Soeurs in the role of Macha, for the Opéra National de Lyon conducted by Kent Nagano. In 1999, he recorded the album Laudate, containing eight beautiful baroque arias including Handel's "He was Despised" and J.S. Bach's "Erbarme Dich." He has also recorded with Kitaro and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
- Best (2009)
- Thinking of You (2005)
- Very Best of Slava (2001)
- Ave Maria II (2001)
- Ave Maria (1999)
- Laudate (1999)
- P. Eötvös: Les Trois Soeurs (1998)
- Vocalise (1998)
- Lullaby (1997)
- Giles, Peter (1982). The Countertenor. Muller Publishing Co.