South Korean bass Kwangchul Youn began his training at the university of his native Chungju. In 1990 he moved to Europe to continue vocal studies at the Music Academy in Sofia and later at the Academy of the Arts in Berlin, from which he graduated in 1993. In the same year he was victor in the Operalia Competition organized by Plácido Domingo, with whom he has regularly performed since, including most recently in December 2009 at the famous tenor's 40th-anniversary celebration at La Scala in Milan. In 1994 he began a permanent engagement at Deutsche Staatsoper in Berlin, where he remained as a member of the ensemble for ten years. There he sang the great roles of the bass repertoire, from Mozart, Beethoven, Rossini, Meyerbeer, and Lortzing to Verdi, Puccini, Wagner, and Strauss. Since 1996 he has been a regular guest artist at the Bayreuth Festival, first appearing as the Landgrave Hermann in Tannhäuser and King Marke in Tristan, then as Fasolt and Hunding in the Ring production of Tankred Dorst and Christian Thielemann, and, since the summer of 2008, taking on the role of Gurnemanz in Stefan Herheim's new production of Parsifal. His credits as a guest artist have additionally taken him to the Paris National Opera, the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, the Vienna and Bavarian Staatsoper, the Metropolitan Opera, and the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. He has collaborated with numerous renowned conductors, above all with Daniel Barenboim and Christian Thielemann but also with Marc Minkowski, Michael Gielen, Zubin Mehta, James Levine, and Thomas Hengelbrock. His artistic achievements have been documented on numerous CDs and DVDs.