Born in Istanbul and raised in Vienna, tenor Ilker Arcayürek has emerged as one of the most exciting and versatile vocal artists in recent years – hailed by the press for his “golden tenor” (Opera Now Magazine) and quickly establishing himself “in a class of his own” (The Guardian). He is a winner of the International Art Song Competition of Germany’s Hugo Wolf Academy, a finalist of the 2015 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World and was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist. He was also selected to perform at Ronaldo Vilazon’s “Stars of Tomorrow” for ARTE. In 2017 Champs Hill Records released his first solo album “Der Einsame”, featuring Schubert songs accompanied by Simon Lepper, to great critical acclaim. His latest recording with Simon titled “Path of Life” for Prospero Classical has recently been nominated for 2 OPUS KLASSIK Awards. On the concert platform he has worked with orchestras such as Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Tonkünstler-Orchester, Tokyo Philharmonic, RSO Vienna, Orchestre National de Belgique, Orchestre National de Lyon, Danish Chamber Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Antwerp Symphony, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Royal Northern Sinfonia under conductors such as Mariss Jansons, Ivor Bolton, Laurence Equilbey, Marin Alsop, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, Philippe Herreweghe, Riccardo Minasi, Mikhail Pletnev, Lars Vogt, Simon Halsey and Adam Fischer. Recent highlights have included Dvorak Requiem with Antwerp Symphony and Collegium Vocale Gent, a return to Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, tenor arias in St Matthew Passion at the Palau with Simon Halsey and soloists from the Berlin Philharmoniker, Mozart’s Requiem with London Philharmonic Orchestra and with Mannheimer Philharmoniker and performances of Haydn’s Die Schöpfung with Kölner Philharmonie, which was also broadcast on the WDR station. Highlights for the 22/23 season include Liszt Eine Faust-Sinfonie with Sinfonieorchester Basel, Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Orchestre des Champs Elysees and Collegium Vocale Gent as well as with Symphonischer Chor Hamburg under Matthias Janz, Mozart’s Mass in C with Rundfunk Sinfoniorchester Berlin, a St Matthew Passion with Residentie Orkest in the Hague, under Matthew Halls and a performance of Britten’s Serenade in Istanbul, with the Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra. On the opera stage, recent successes include his Canadian Opera Company debut as Tamino Die Zauberflöte, Ferrando Cosi Fan Tutte with Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian and for Opera Vlaanderen and Opéra National de Montpellier performing the roles of Ariel, Pater Ecstaticus in Schumann’s Szenen aus Goethes Faust, in a production to which Ilker will return in the coming season. This season Ilker will also perform the role of Alfred in Die Fledermaus at Musikverein Graz. Ilker has been a member of the studio of Zürich Opera (2009-2013) a member of the ensemble of the Stadttheater Klagenfurt (2013-2015) and Staatstheater Nürnberg (2015-18) singing various roles such as Tamino Die Zauberflöte, the title role Idomeneo, Don Ottavio Don Giovanni, Ferrando Così fan tutte and Rodolfo La Bohème. As a guest artist he has performed at Teatro Real Madrid in Kasper Holten’s production of Wagner’s Das Liebesverbot, Munich Opera Festival of the Bayerische Staatsoper in the world premiere of Nikolaus Brass’ Die Vorübergehenden, Salzburg Festival in Donizetti’s Lucrezia Borgia, Volksoper Wien in Lortzing’s Zar and Zimmerman and for Opera Graz the role of Lyonel in Flotow’s Martha and as the title role in Weber’s Oberon. In summer 2019 Ilker made his US operatic debut in the role of Nadir in Les Pêcheurs de Perles at Santa Fe Opera. Alongside his commitments to symphonic and operatic repertoire, Ilker is a passionate exponent of Lied, working with pianists such as Simon Lepper, Hartmut Höll, Ammiel Bushakevitz, Daniel Heide and Wolfram Rieger. He has given recitals at the Edinburgh International Festival, Oxford Lieder, Wigmore Hall, the Schubertiada Vilabertran, deSingel Antwerp, Life Victoria Barcelona (Die schone Mullerin) at the Innsbruck Festwochen, Hugo Wolf Academy Stuttgart and the Bibliotheksaal Polling. He made his highly anticipated United States recital debut in February 2019 at the Park Avenue Armory in New York and with San Francisco Performances, accompanied by pianist Simon Lepper. Other future recital dates include those at Oper Frankfurt and Schubertiade with Simon Lepper, International Lied Festival Zeist, Wigmore Hall, LSO St Luke’s, Wiener Konzerthaus, and a return to Park Armory in New York. Ilker makes his home in Zürich with his wife and daughter.
As of August 2023