Before devoting herself fully to her singing career, German mezzo-soprano Waltraud Meier studied English and Romanic languages. In 1976 she made her debut at the Würzburg Opera as Lola in Cavalleria Rusticana. With her triumphant success as Kundry in Wagner's Parsifal at the 1983 Bayreuth Festival, she launched her international career. Celebrated as one of the foremost Wagner singers of our times she has regularly been invited to all big stages in London, New York, Chicago, Milan, Paris, Vienna, Berlin, Munich and other places. Also in the Italian and French repertoire the great power of her musical and dramatic expression enjoys worldwide demand.
Waltraud Meier has collaborated with such significant directors as Jean-Pierre Ponnelle, Luc Bondy, Harry Kupfer, Götz Friedrich, Klaus-Michael Grüber, Heiner Müller, Jürgen Flimm and Patrice Chéreau as well as great directors as Daniel Barenboim, Riccardo Muti, Claudio Abbado, James Levine, Zubin Mehta, Christian Thielemann, Valery Gergiev, Sir Simon Rattle, Riccardo Chailly and Antonio Pappano.
Being a singer and artist who has never ceased to seek out new challenges and to venture on new paths, she devoted her 2003/04 season exclusively on singing in its purest form: recitals and concerts. She has since been committing a large part of her work to this expressive potential. Her extremely fruitful collaboration with Patrice Chéreau on Alban Berg's Wozzeck brought about the desire for further joint productions. At the opening of the 2007/2008 Scala season Waltraud Meier sang - under the baton of Barenboim - in Chéreau's psychologically deeply profound production of Tristan and Isolde.
In the summer of 2010 she appeared for the first time as Klytämnestra at the Salzburg Festival, a role she later performed in Patrice Chéreau’s new production of Elektra on many different important stages. Recent important productions include Lohengrin/Ortrud in Bayreuth, Klytämnestra in Vienna, Zurich and at Staatsoper Berlin, Beethoven 9th with D. Barenboim in Berlin.
An extensive discography and videography as well as many productions available on DVD testify to the versatility of this unique singer's power of interpretation, musicality, vocal beauty, and art of singing. A highly acclaimed winner of many awards Waltraud Meier was honored with the title of "Kammersängerin" by both the Bavarian State Opera and the Vienna State Opera. She lives in Munich and is since June 2017 Honorary Member of the Vienna State Opera.