Komsi, Piia

is known for her exceptionally high and flexible voice and virtuoso technique. She is a successful international performer of baroque, classical, and contemporary repertoire not only in opera and orchestral music, but also chamber music and Lieder. Piia Komsi has been a muse to many contemporary composers. Her latest success has been the Duchesse de Guise in Wolfgang Mitterer’s Massacre. Komsi made her breakthrough as the Maid in Thomas Adès’s opera Powder Her Face. Her other operatic roles have included Gepopo and Venus in Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre, Pamina and Queen of the Night in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Brünnhilde in Wagner/Jonathan Dove’s Ring Saga, Medea in Dusapin’s Medeamaterial, The Cat in Chin’s Alice in Wonderland, and the cello playing daughter in Hofmann’s Ahti Karjalainen. Piia Komsi has been engaged by opera houses including the Finnish National Opera, Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Théatre et Musique in Paris, San Carlo in Naples, Teatro Olimpico in Rome, and several free opera groups in Finland.

As a soloist she has performed with numerous orchestras such as Los Angeles Philharmonic, BBC SO London and BBC Wales National, Bavarian Radio, London Sinfonietta, Ensemble intercontemporain, Radio France, Ensemble Modern, Oslo Philharmonic, Stockholm Royal Philharmonic, Gulbenkian Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony, Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto / Casa da Música, Remix, MDR Leipzig, NDR Hamburg, Musikfabrik, Elision, as well as early music and new music orchestras in Finland. She has worked with leading conductors including Esa-Pekka Salonen, Peter Eötvös, Kent Nagano, Sakari Oramo, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, François-Xavier Roth, and Peter Rundel. Salonen’s Wing on Wing was composed for Piia Komsi and her twin sister Anu and has become part of many international concert seasons. Wing on Wing will be performed next by the New York Philharmonic in 2016.

With her background as a cellist (she was a member of the Finnish National Orchestra until 2001), Piia Komsi’s latest challenge is to sing while playing the cello simultaneously. Several composers have already written new pieces for her unique soprano coloratura–cellist combination.

Komsi’s recordings include Solaris (Naxos/Proprius), Salonen’s Wing on Wing (Deutsche Grammophon), Akrostichon-Wortspiel by Unsuk Chin (Deutsche Grammophon), From the Grammar of Dreams by Kaija Saariaho (Ondine), Procris by Wennäkoski (Alba), Mothers and Daughters by Tuomela (Aulos), Alice in Wonderland by Unsuk Chin (DVD), and Ahti Karjalainen by Heinz-Juhani Hofman.