The Gertman baritone of Hungarian descent, Michael Nagy, had his first musical training in a boys’ choir, the Stuttgarter Hymnus-Chorknaben. He studied singing in Stuttgart, Mannheim and Saarbrücken under Rudolf Piernay, song interpretation under Irwin Gage, and conducting. He rounded off his training in master-classes with Charles Spencer, Rudolf Piernay and Cornelius Reid. In 2004, together with the pianist Juliane Ruf, he won the Internationaler Wettbewerb für Liedkunst [International Lieder Competition] staged by the Hugo-Wolf-Akademie in Stuttgart.
‘Hats off! This man is a revelation!’ was the Evening News‘s verdict of Michael Nagy following his debut performance in Gustav Mahler's Wunderhornliedern with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester. The young baritone was at first a member of the ensemble of the Komische Oper Berlin; he then went to the Frankfurt Opera where he managed to add the important parts of Papageno in W.A. Mozart's Die Zauberflöte, Guglielmo in W.A. Mozart's Così fan tutte, Count Almaviva in W.A. Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro, Hans Scholl in Die weiße Rose, Wolfram in Tannhäuser, Valentin in Charles Gounod's Faust, Jeletzki in Pique Dame, Marcello in La Bohème, Albert in Werther, Frank/Fritz in Die tote Stadt, Owen Wingrave (title roll), Jason in Medea and Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus to his repertoire.
Guest engagements have taken him to, among other places, the Oslo opera house, as Wolfram in Tannhäuser, the Deutsche Oper in Berlin and the Bavarian State Opera in Munich (Graf Luna in Palestrina). He has also appeared at the Theater an der Wien as Nardo in W.A. Mozart's La finta giardiniera with the Freiburger Barockorchester under René Jacobs.
Michael Nagy is now sought after worldwide for concert and oratorio performances. With Philippe Herreweghe he has developed a steady musical relationship, including works such as J.S. Bach's Matthäus-Passion (BWV 244) at the Lincoln Center in New York, Felix Mendelssohn's Elijah in Amsterdam and tours with G. Mahler's Rückertlieder and Wunderhornlieder. Further engagements have taken him to the Konzerthausorchester in Berlin, the Museumsorchester in Frankfurt, the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig in Leipzig and to the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival. Adam Fischer and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Paavo Järvi and the HR-Sinfonieorchester (Frankfurt), Christoph Eschenbach and the NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg, and Riccardo Chailly are among the prominent musical partners for his broadly based concert repertoire. He works closely together with Helmuth Rilling, who has followed and supported his development from the outset.
Following a successful 2012-2013 season, including roles such as Papageno with the Berliner Philharmoniker under Sir Simon Rattle at the Baden-Baden Easter Festival, he started the current season at the Lucerne Festival with Gunther, within Der Ring des Nibelungen, with the Bamberger Symphoniker under Jonathan Nott. He is also making his debut in three roles: as Ford in Falstaff at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, as W.A. Mozart's Don Giovanni (title role) at the Norske Opera Oslo and finally as Stolzius in Die Soldaten at the Bavarian State Opera Munich. Concert projects of this season include Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 14 with Marek Janowski and the Radio-Symphonie-Orchester-Berlin, F. Mendelssohn's Walpurgisnacht with the Münchner Philharmoniker under Pablo Heras-Casado, as well as a concert of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's Die Auferstehung und Himmelfahrt Jesu with the Freiburger Barockorchester under René Jacobs at the Mozarteum Salzburg. In addition, a Lieder evening is planned at the Paris Opéra Bastille with Gerold Huber. He is a member of the Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks.