Vasyl Slipak

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Vasyl Slipak
Василь Ярославович Сліпак
On Independence Day of Ukraine (August 24) 2014 in Paris
Born20 December 1974
Died29 June 2016 (aged 41)
OccupationOpera singer
Years active1994–2016
AwardsHero of Ukraine Order of the Gold Star (posthumously)

Vasyl Yaroslavovych Slipak (Ukrainian: Василь Ярославович Сліпак, 20 December 1974 – 29 June 2016) was a Ukrainian baritone opera singer. From 1994 he frequently performed in France at such venues as Paris Opera and Opéra Bastille.[1] For his opera performance, Slipak received several awards, including "Best Male Performance" for the Toreador Song.[1] A volunteer in the Ukrainian army, Slipak was killed during the war in Donbass by a Russian sniper near the village of Luhanske, in Bakhmut region.[2] He was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine for his work as a volunteer soldier.[3]

Opera career[edit]

Born in 1974 in Lviv, Slipak liked to sing since his childhood.[1][4] At the age of 11, Slipak joined the Lviv children's choir group Dudarik. After that, he continued his education at the Lviv Conservatory. During his education, Slipak participated in a vocal contest in the French city of Clermont, winning the contest. In 1996, Slipak received an invitation to perform at Opéra Bastille in Paris. In 1997 Slipak graduated from the Lysenko Music Academy in Lviv and then was invited to the Paris Opera where he became an opera singer.[5] By 2011, he was at the top of his field, winning the prize for best male performer at the Armel Opera Competition and Festival in Szeged, Hungary, for his rendering of the Toreador Song from the opera Carmen.[6]



Slipak returned to Ukraine and participated in the Euromaidan in 2014.[1] In 2015, Slipak joined the fights against pro-Russian separatists as a member of the 7th Battalion of the Volunteer Ukrainian Corps of the Right Sector. He took the military call sign Mif, a reference to his favorite aria of Mephistopheles from the opera Faust (his informal call sign was Myth[4]).[1] After the war in Donbass, Slipak planned to continue his career in Paris.

On 29 June 2016, at approximately 6 a.m., Slipak was killed by a sniper shot near Luhanske.[1] Slipak's life was the subject of the 2018 documentary film Myth.[4]

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has awarded posthumously the title of Hero of Ukraine to Slipak.[3]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Zelensky begins his speech at UNGA with story about deceased opera singer Vasyl Slipak, 112 Ukraine (25 September 2019)
    "Василий Слипак: биография оперного певца, который погиб за Украину" [Vasyl Slipak: biography of opera singer, who died for Ukraine] (in Russian). RBC. 29 June 2016. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  2. ^ "Kharkiv Commemorated World Famous Opera Singer Killed on Donbas". Retrieved 27 December 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Paris opera singer, Ukrainian Vasyl Slipak awarded Hero of Ukraine title posthumously". risu. 20 February 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  4. ^ a b c "Film about Vasyl Slipak released in Ukraine". Ukrinform. 23 January 2018. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
  5. ^ "Ukrainian Opera Singer Killed While Fighting In Eastern Ukraine". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. 29 June 2016. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  6. ^ Andrew E. Kramer (30 June 2016). "Wassyl Slipak, Who Left Paris Opera for Ukraine War, Dies at 41". The New York Times. Retrieved 29 March 2018.

External links[edit]