Born in Akureyri, Iceland to a musical family, Mr. Jóhannsson did not begin his musical studies until he was twenty years old, working at first at the College of Music in his native city with Sigurdur Demetz. He then went to live in Italy to pursue additional vocal training, attending the Conservatorio Nicolini in Piacenza under the guidance of M° Gianni Poggi, and later taking further private study from the renowned coach Ettore Campogalliani and from the legandary tenor Ferruccio Tagliavini, establishing a firm knowledge and command of true Italian style.
Kristján Jóhannsson made his operatic debut 1980 at the Osimo Teatro Piccola la Fenice in Puccini´s Il Tabarro og Gianni Schicchi and quickly attracted the attention of major opera houses in Great Britain and Italy.
Kristján Jóhannsson's repertoire encompasses all of the major Italian roles (See Repertoire). He has been hailed for his singing in the worlds prestigious theatres and cities including the Metropolitan Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Baltimore Opera, the Teatro alla Scala, Teatro dell Opera Roma, Maggio Musicale Firenze, Teatro San Carlo Napoli, the Vienna State Opera, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Arena di Verona, Carnegie Hall New York, Peking new national opera, Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Seuol Korea, Tokyo, Zurick, Swiss, Bologna, Firenze, Berlin, Hamburg, Munchen, Frankfurt, Paris, Telaviv, Warschow Polland and Zagreb.