American tenor Christopher Oglesby made his San Francisco Opera debut as an Adler Fellow during the 2018-2019 season as Dancaïre in Carmen, later singing Benvolio in Roméo et Juliette, Edmondo in Manon Lescaut, Jaquino in Fidelio, and covering Ferrando in Così fan tutte during his subsequent years as an Adler Fellow (2020, 2021).
During the 2021-2022 season, Oglesby’s continued assignments with San Francisco Opera included a cover of Caesar in Antony and Cleopatra and performances as First Commissioner in Dialogues des Carmélites.
As a Resident Artist with Utah Opera during the 2017-2018 season, Oglesby sang Tybalt in Roméo et Juliette and was the tenor soloist for Handel’s Messiah with the Utah Symphony. As a participant of the 2018 Merola Opera Program, he debuted as Tom Rakewell in The Rake’s Progress.
An active soloist and recitalist, Oglesby has performed for the SF Film Festival, Dallas Puccini Society, Vallejo Festival Orchestra, and in the Schwabacher Recital Series at San Francisco Opera. Oglesby is a recipient of the Richard F. Gold Career Grant.
Most recently, Christopher made his role and company debut with Sarasota Opera as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly during the 2022-2023 season, and a role and company debut with West Edge Opera as Boris in Kát’a Kabanová in 2021.
Forthcoming seasons will include mainstage debuts as Rodolfo in La bohème and Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor.
Tenor John Pickle is an established and versatile force on both the operatic and concert stages. His unique vocal quality lends itself to a wide variety of repertoire in the tenor catalogue. Remarking on a recent performance of Don José in Carmen with Toledo Opera, the Toledo Blade wrote “Pickle’s ability to crank out a high Bb’s pianissimo is the stuff of which Metropolitan dreams are made. His third act tribute to his dying mother is artistically moving to the point of drawing tears,” and Opera News noted of a production of Die Fledermaus with Florentine Opera that “John Pickle possibly won the vocal laurels as Alfred, but then Alfred gets to show off the most. Pickle’s gleaming tenor registered charmingly in his interpolated snatches of various arias…”
The 2023-2024 season brings performances of Calaf in Turandot with Opera Delaware, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Akron Symphony, Mozart’s Requiem with Canton Symphony, and concerts with Cleveland Pops and Pittsburgh Festival Opera.
During the 2022-2023 season, Pickle performed Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with Opera Colorado, Don José in Carmen with Pacific Opera Victoria, and a concert of opera’s greatest hits with Maryland Opera. The 2021-2022 season included appearances as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Hawaii Opera Theatre, Don José in Carmen with Painted Sky Opera, soloist in concert with the Bel Canto Center for the Performing Arts, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Canton Symphony Orchestra, and Mozart’s Requiem with Pacific Symphony.
Additional recent engagements include Canio in Pagliacci with Opera Colorado, Michigan Opera Theatre, Opera Memphis, Dayton Opera, and Opera Delaware; Erik in Der fliegende Holländer with Los Angeles Opera, Michigan Opera Theater, Lyric Opera Kansas City, Mobile Opera, and Utah Festival Opera; Cavardossi in Tosca with Nashville Opera, Intermountain Opera Bozeman, Opera Southwest, Tri-Cities Opera, and Townsend Opera; Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly at Pacific Symphony, Florida Grand Opera, Cleveland Opera Theater, and Dayton Opera; Don José in Carmen with Opera Tampa, Nevada Opera, and Opera Louisianne; Pollione in Norma with Lyric Opera Chicago (cv), and Opera Southwest; Radamés in Aïda with Dayton Opera; Riccardo in Un Ballo in Maschera with Opera Tampa; Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with Opera Delaware; Des Grieux in Manon Lescaut and Calaf in Turandot with Mobile Opera; Manrico in Il trovatore with Intermountain Opera Bozeman; Judge Danforth in The Crucible with Utah Festival Opera, and Rodolfo in La bohème with Colorado Symphony, Opera Southwest, Nevada Opera, and Baltimore Concert Opera. Of a particular performance as Rodolfo, one critic raved: “John Pickle brings a resilient, wonderfully placed sound and a sensitive musicality to Rodolfo that embraces each nuance of this rich score with an enviable mix of delicacy and strength.”
Mr. Pickle has also excelled in concert appearances throughout the country. He made his Houston Symphony debut under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach as the tenor soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, of which Culture Map Houston declared, “As for the men, tenor John Pickle’s lyrical dominance reverberated courtesy of his clear musical vision and intensifying pacing.”
Concert engagements in recent seasons have included Verdi’s Requiem with Dayton Philharmonic, Mississippi Symphony Orchestra, Akron Symphony, Opera Grand Rapids, Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra, and DCINY in Carnegie Hall and Barcelona’s famed Palau de la Música Catalana; Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Dayton Philharmonic, Springfield Symphony, The Orchestra Now, Lima Symphony, Long Bay Symphony, and National Chorale; Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with Dayton Philharmonic; Beethoven’s Missa solemnis with Utah Festival Opera; Kodaly’s Te Deum with Oregon Music Festival, Eugene Suchon’s Psalm of the Carpathian Land with Sonomento and Kenwood Symphonies; and operatic greatest hits concerts with Florentine Opera, Santa Barbara Symphony, Lyric Opera of Virginia, Northwest Arkansas Symphony, Mobile Opera, Intermountain Opera Bozeman, Opera Idaho and the Boise Philharmonic, and St. Bart’s Music Festival.
Pickle made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2008, performing Schubert’s Mass in G Major and Mozart’s Requiem conducted by John Rutter, and also performed Mozart’s Requiem in that famed hall again in 2012. Additionally, he performed Beethoven’s Mass in C Major with New Jersey Choral Society, Gabriello and Un Cantore in Giordano’s rarely performed La cena delle beffe with Teatro Grattacielo in Alice Tully Hall, and Victor Herbert’s 150th Birthday Celebration with Little Orchestra Society.
Praised for his “big, heroic voice” (LA Weekly) and “powerful emotions,” tenor Dane Suarez (he/him) has developed an exciting and varied career. Last season, Mr. Suarez made his Off-Broadway debut in Kate Tarker‘s world premiere play Montag at Soho Rep and joined OperaDelaware, The Carolina Philharmonic, Heartbeat Opera, Penn Square Opera, and Maryland Opera for concert and gala performances. He also returned to New Jersey Festival Orchestra to sing Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi), covered Apollo (Strauss’s Daphne) with American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, sang Luigi (Il tabarro) with On Site Opera, and sang Turiddu (Cavalleria rusticana) with Lyric Opera of the North.
Upcoming performances include a reprise of Don José in Carmen with Festival Opera, Il Duca (Rigoletto) with OperaDelaware (debut) and Opera Baltimore, Scalia (Scalia/Ginsburg) with Anchorage Opera (debut), Don José in La tragédie de Carmen with Newport Classical, and Canio in his return to Opera Birmingham. With Penn Square Music Festival, he performs excerpts from Carmen, Cavalleria rusticana, and Tosca, with Maryland Opera he performs excerpts from Werther and Les contes d’Hoffmann, and he covers Calaf at OperaDelaware. He will also be heard in concert with The Phoenix Symphony as tenor soloist for both a Holiday Pops concert and Handel’s Mesías (Messiahin Spanish).
Mr. Suarez’s 2021-2022 season included a return to Opera Memphis starring as the tortured Canio in a new production of Pagliacci; his debut as Manrico (Il trovatore) and a jump-in as Lensky (Eugene Onegin) with Opera in the Heights; a reprisal of Scalia (Scalia/Ginsburg) with both Penn Square Music Festival and Opera in the Heights, company debuts as Rodolfo with Opera Birmingham and Newport Classical, and his role and company debuts as Pollione in Norma with Festival Opera. He was also seen in concert for a recital with wife Kerriann Otaño for Il Cenacolo Club of San Francisco, a debut with New Jersey Festival Orchestra for The Three Holiday Tenors, a return to Maryland Opera for a live-streamed concert entitled Variant Valentine, and a return to his alma mater (Butler University) as guest tenor soloist for Verdi’s Messa da Requiem.
In the winter of 2020, Mr. Suarez returned to West Bay Opera to perform the role of Macduff in their production of Macbeth. For the remainder of the 2020 season, he was scheduled to reprise the role of Rodolfo in La bohème with Fort Worth Opera (COVID19), perform the title role in Faust with Opera Neo (COVID19) and make his role debut as Manrico in Il trovatore with Opera in the Heights (COVID19). In the summer of 2020, Mr. Suarez performed the role of First Armored Man in Opera Neo‘s innovative digital production of The Magic Flute. During the 2020-2021 season, Mr. Suarez debuted with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra for their holiday concert, returned to Opera Memphis as Scalia in Derrick Wang’s acclaimed Scalia/Ginsburg, returned to Maryland Opera for a live-streamed concert, and was scheduled to perform the role of Don José in Carmen with Festival Opera (the aforementioned production postponed to 2023).
Mr. Suarez’s 2019 season included his role and house debut as Fenton in Falstaff with West Bay Opera, a return to Opera Neo to perform the role of Lensky in Eugene Onegin (where he was hailed by critics as “a vocal tour de force of surpassing splendor,”) a return to Opera San José as Greenhorn in Moby-Dick, reprising the role of Erik in Der fliegende Holländer with Baltimore Concert Opera, and his mainstage debut as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Opera San José.
In 2018, Mr. Suarez reprised the roles of Don José in Carmen and Rodolfo in La bohème AKA “The Hipsters” with Pacific Opera Project, where the Act I duet was described as “a transfixing moment of sublime beauty.” He sang the title role in Idomeneo with Opera Neo and joined Opera San José as a Resident Artist in 2017, where his role responsibilities included Ruggero in La rondine, Erik in Der fliegende Holländer, Alfredo in La traviata, and Canio in Pagliacci. During the 2016-17 season, Mr. Suarez made his New York City Opera debut in his “completely winning” performance as Joe in La fanciulla del West, Rodolfo in his debut with Pacific Opera Project, and was a Studio Artist with Sarasota Opera, where he covered Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, and performed Flaminio in L’amore dei tre re. (Suarez was subsequently granted the Mandelker Award for Outstanding Studio Artist). He returned to Fort Worth Opera for their 2017 Frontiers Showcase, and to Opera Memphis for 30 Days of Opera. Mr. Suarez was pictured on the front page of The Arts section of The New York Times and lauded for his “beautiful, soaring, and moving” performance as Cavaradossi in LoftOpera’s production of Tosca that “brought down the house.”
Mr. Suarez made his John F. Kennedy Center debut in 2015 with Washington National Opera as Ely Parker in Philip Glass’s Appomattox. Other past credits include joining Opera Memphis as Don José in La tragédie de Carmen and Beppe in Pagliacci, a run with Crested Butte Music Festival as Rodolfo, his role debut as Il Duca in Rigoletto at Opera in the Heights, his Fort Worth Opera debut as Marcellus in Thomas’s Hamlet, Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Mr. Splinters in The Tender Land, and Normanno in Lucia di Lammermoor (all with Opera North), his debut as Don José as well as a turn as Shuisky alongside Eric Owens in the Coronation Scene from Boris Godunov with Aspen Music Festival, and Henrik in A Little Night Music at the late Loren Maazel‘s Castleton Festival.
Mr. Suarez was a 2014 National Semi-Finalist of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has been recognized and awarded by multiple organizations including: Tri-Cities Opera TCO NEXT Competition, The Loren L. Zachary Society for the Performing Arts, Giulio Gari International Vocal Competition, Opera Birmingham Vocal Competition, Sarasota Opera, Brava! Opera Theater Vocal Competition, The Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year Competition, Beethoven Club of Memphis, Bel Canto Foundation, and Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
Mr. Suarez holds a bachelor’s degree in music from Butler University and a master’s degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The artist’s website can be seen at danesuarez.com.
American baritone Stephen Gaertner has performed extensively across North America and Europe in such diverse roles as Riccardo in I Puritani, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, the title roles in Nabucco, Macbeth and Rigoletto, Di Luna in Il Trovatore, Germont in La Traviata, Paolo in Simon Boccanegra, Chorèbe in Les Troyens, Escamillo in Carmen, Amonasro in Aida, Iago in Otello, Alfio in Cavalleria Rusticana, Tonio and Silvio in Pagliacci, Marcello in La Bohème, Scarpia in Tosca, Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, Lanceotto in Francesca da Rimini, the title role in Gianni Schicchi, and Balstrode in Peter Grimes. Recent career highlights have included appearances as Macbeth at the Savonlinna Opera Festival, Opernfestspiele Heidenheim and Opéra de Dijon; Germont in La Traviata with Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre; Amonasro in Aida with Teatro San Carlo, Naples; Iago in Otello with Teatro de la Ópera, San Juan; Rigoletto with Opera Grand Rapids; Riccardo in I Puritani with Teatro Verdi Trieste; and Scarpia in Tosca and the title role in Nabucco with Sarasota Opera.
Mr. Gaertner made his Metropolitan Opera debut in 2007 as Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor. His other roles at the Met have included Melot in Tristan und Isolde, Chorèbe in Les Troyens and Paolo in Simon Boccanegra (a performance available on Sony Classical HD DVD), in addition to covers of several major Verdi baritone roles: Carlo in Ernani, Di Luna in Il Trovatore and Germont in La Traviata. He has also covered the role of Rigoletto with Los Angeles Opera. Gaertner made his European debut at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie in Liège in 2010, as Escamillo in Carmen.
Gaertner has also been a frequent performer of opera in concert. He appeared with Teatro Grattacielo at Alice Tully Hall in New York City as Cristiano in Zandonai’s I Cavalieri di Ekebù and as Cascart in Leoncavallo’s Zazà (the latter under the baton of the late Alfredo Silipigni). He also made several appearances with Opera Orchestra of New York at Carnegie Hall: as Sonora in La Fanciulla del West, Abayaldos in Donizetti’s Dom Sébastien, and Frank in Puccini’s Edgar, all under the baton of founder and music director Eve Queler. He has also sung Macbeth in concert with the Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie Konstanz and Carlo in La Forza del Destino in concert with New Amsterdam Opera in New York City. He made a stunning U.K. debut in 2015 at London’s Barbican Hall as Cascart in Zazà in concert with Opera Rara and Maurizio Benini conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra, garnering high praise from the exigent London press. He also appeared in 2021 at London’s Cadogan Hall as Tamar in Leoncavallo’s Zingari in concert with Opera Rara and Carlo Rizzi conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. These two Opera Rara appearances resulted in studio recordings, both released commercially to critical acclaim; the Zingari recording earned a nomination for the 2023 International Classical Music Awards (ICMA) in the Opera category.
Additional concert appearances have included Britten’s War Requiem at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. and Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem at Carnegie Hall with the New England Symphonic Ensemble. Mr. Gaertner has also been the recipient of awards from the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation, Opera Index Inc. and the Oratorio Society of New York.
An acclaimed interpreter of contemporary works as well as the inherited repertoire, Wes has performed more than 50 unique operatic roles. Highlights include Hannah Before in As One with Pensacola Opera, Eugene Opera, and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Jan Nyman in Breaking the Waves with West Edge Opera, Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire with Kentucky Opera, Father Flynn in Doubtwith Union Avenue Opera, Jonathan in Siren Song with Hawaii Opera Theatre, Dax/Larry in the world premiere of Paterson and Cote’s Three Way with Nashville Opera and American Opera Project, Charlie in Three Decembers and Ping in Turandot with Nashville Opera, the title role in Hamlet with Fort Worth Opera, the title role in Guillaume Tell with the Southern Illinois Music Festival, Reinaldo Arenas in the world premiere of Martín and Koch’s Before Night Falls with Fort Worth Opera, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore with Gulfshore Opera, Masetto in Don Giovanni with Opera Philadelphia and Opera Naples, Achilla in Giulio Cesare with Opera Roanoke, Escamillo in Carmen with Fargo-Moorhead Opera, Escamillo in La Tragédie de Carmenwith Syracuse Opera, Marcello in La bohème with Hawaii Opera Theatre, Fort Worth Opera, and Norwalk Symphony, Schaunard in La bohème with the Crested Butte Music Festival, Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles with Opera Delaware and Baltimore Concert Opera, the baritone soloist in Broadway Extravaganzawith Opera Hong Kong, Sciarrone in Tosca with Dallas Opera, and Morales in Carmen with the Glimmerglass Festival and Michigan Opera Theater.
Recently, Wes returned to Michigan Opera Theatre to perform the role of Figaro in Ragnar Kjartansson’s performance piece Bliss, a continuous 12-hour singing marathon based on Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro. In 2020, Wes made his Off-Broadway debut as Wotan/Gunther/Hagen in On Site Opera’s production of Das Barbecü. Other noted stage performances include Billy Bigelow in Carousel with Union Avenue Opera and Utah Festival Opera Musical Theater, Curly in Oklahoma! with Maryland Live Arts and UFOMT, Bishop Myriel in Les Misérables with UFOMT, Frank Butler (u/s) in Annie Get Your Gun with the Glimmerglass Festival, and a staged version of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters at the Signature Theatre in Arlington, Virginia with Urban Arias. During the 2022-2023 season, they will return to Pensacola Opera to perform the role of Billy Bigelow in Carousel.
A passionate advocate for new works, Wes has enjoyed working with such composers as Laura Kaminsky, Luna Pearl Woolf, Missy Mazzoli, Stephen Schwartz, Jimmy Roberts, Jake Heggie, Jonathan Dove, Ricky Ian Gordon, Jorge Martín, Conrad Cummings, Robert Paterson, Glen Roven, Mark Adamo, Clint Borzoni, and Robert Maggio.
Mason has been featured on the world premiere cast recordings of Three Wayas Dax/Larry with Naxos and Before Night Fallsas Reinaldo Arenas with Albany Records. Wes was also a recipient of a Career Development Award from the Sullivan Foundation, a finalist in the Opera Index Competition, an Encouragement Award Winner in the Loren L. Zachary Society Competition, a Regional Winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (MONCA), an Encouragement Award Winner at the District Level of the MONCA, a three-time nominee for the Sarah Tucker Study Grant, and the recipient of the Earl V. Moore Award for Outstanding Contribution to the School of Music, Theater, and Dance at the University of Michigan. Wes is a graduate of the prestigious Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia and received a Bachelor’s in Voice Performance from the University of Michigan.
An El Paso, Texas native, Mexican-American Baritone Luis Alejandro Orozco has been praised for his “voluminous baritone and beautiful legato.”
Mr. Orozco’s 2023-2024 season begins with Opera Omaha, singing Malatesta in Don Pasquale and also joining them as an Artist in Residence for a series of community engagement projects. He then returns to Nashville Opera for one of his signature roles, Riolobo in Florencia en el Amazonas, and appears with Madison Opera as Maximilian in Candide. Last season, the baritone returned to The Metropolitan Opera as a Flemish Deputy in Don Carlos. He also joined Nashville Opera, singing Marcello in La bohème, Gulfshore Opera as the title role in Don Giovanni, and Wichita Grand Opera as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia.
Luis Orozco made his Metropolitan Opera debut in the 2021-2022 season, singing the Prime Minister in their English version of Cendrillon. He also curated and sang in a Hispanic Heritage Concert with Fort Worth Opera, followed by his debut with Virginia Opera as Marcello in a one-act version of La bohème. He then returned to Opéra de Lyon to remount Maria de Buenos Aires on their mainstage, singing El Payador, joined Intermountain Opera as the Count in Le nozze di Figaro, and appeared with Minnesota Opera in a gala concert.
Recently Mr. Orozco made his Swiss debut as Riolobo in Florencia en el Amazonas with Theater St. Gallen, performed Escamillo in Carmen with Pensacola Opera, and joined the Nuits de Fourvière Festival to sing El Payador in collaboration with Opéra de Lyon, appeared in recital with Opera Saratoga, and collaborated with More Than Musical to create a filmed production of La bohème, singing Marcello. In the summer of 2021 he joined Opera Maine as Belcore in L’elisir d’amore and the St. Croix Valley Opera for their Opera on the River concert.
Appearing regularly with symphonies and in recital, his recent concert engagements include the Carmina Burana with the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Las Vegas Philharmonic, and he has toured across Russia in a concert honoring Leonard Bernstein.
Previous seasons have included performances of Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Florentine Opera and Syracuse Opera; Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with Opera Santa Barbara; Escamillo in Carmen with Detroit Opera (formerly Michigan Opera Theater), and Syracuse Opera; Zurga in Pearl Fishers with Opera in Williamsburg; Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette with Lyric Opera Baltimore, Opera Grand Rapids, and Austin Lyric Opera; Belcore in L’elisir d’amore with Opera Santa Barbara; Riolobo in Florencia en el Amazonas with Washington National Opera, San Diego Opera, Pensacola Opera, and Arizona Opera; Hannah before in As One with Anchorage Opera and Urban Arias; Silvio in Pagliacci with Opera Roanoke; Taddeo in L’italiana in Algeri with Opera Santa Barbara; Perichaud in La Rondine with Opera Theater of St. Louis; the title role in Don Giovanni with Opera Naples and Opera Western Reserve, and Marcello in La bohéme with Kentucky Opera, Opera Santa Barbara, and Anchorage Opera.
Luis Orozco is known as the leading interpreter in the United States for the role of El Payador in Piazzolla’s Maria de Buenos Aires, a role which he has performed at Florida Grand Opera, Cincinnati Opera, the Aspen Music Festival, Arizona Opera, Nashville Opera, Fort Worth Opera, New Orleans Opera, Mill City Summer Opera, and Anchorage Opera.
Overseas, Orozco has performed the role of Papageno in Mozart’s Magic Flute with The Seoul International Opera Festival in South Korea, and the title role in Rossini’s Il Signor Bruschino with the CCM Spoleto Festival. Orozco was a part of the Kennedy Center World Stages Festival in the premiere staged reading of Fallujah by composer Tobin Stokes in 2013.
Known for his riveting dramatic portrayals and the power and beauty of his voice, American baritone Morgan Smith has been entrusted to create 16 roles in world premieres, including Starbuck in Jake Heggie’s widely celebrated Moby-Dick. Mr. Smith has also earned universal praise for performances in traditional repertoire, notably Escamillo (Carmen), the title role of Don Giovanni, Sharpless (Madama Butterfly), Count Alamaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Four Villains (Les contes d’Hoffmann), and the title role of Eugene Onegin.
Most recently, Morgan’s work as Richard in Kevin Puts’ The Hours has been heard in workshops with Cincinnati Opera (2021) and The Metropolitan Opera (2022), as well as a cover assignment with the Philadelphia Orchestra (2022).
Prior to the impact of COVID, Morgan began the 2019/20 season fresh from two highly successful role debuts with Cincinnati Opera: Musiklehrer (Ariadne auf Naxos), and Earl Mann in the widely anticipated and greatly acclaimed premiere of Scott Davenport Richards’ and David Cote’s Blind Injustice. He revisited the role of Eugene Onegin with Livermore Valley Opera before appearing in Seattle as soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Seattle Symphony. Later that season, Morgan debuted with the Atlanta Symphony as soloist in Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music, and J. S. Bach’s Cantata 29.
Recent successes include Scarpia in Tosca with National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Herman in Ben Moore’s Enemies, a Love Story with Kentucky Opera, Paul Jobs in The (R)Evolution of Steve Jobs with Seattle Opera, Tadeusz in Weinberg’s The Passenger with Israeli Opera, Joseph De Rocher in Dead Man Walking with Welsh National Opera, his title role debut of Eugene Onegin at Lyric Opera Kansas City, Sharpless in Madama Butterfly at Kentucky Opera and Opéra de Montréal; the reprise of his critically acclaimed Starbuck at Dallas Opera and LA Opera, Marcello in La bohème with Oper Leipzig and San Diego Opera. Mr. Smith performed Don Giovanni with Arizona Opera, Austin Opera, and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He received rave reviews for his riveting portrayal of Joseph De Rocher in Dead Man Walking at Kentucky Opera and Opera on the Avalon in 2017.
Other performances of note included Escamillo in Carmen at Vancouver Opera, Pittsburgh Opera and Fort Worth Opera and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Seattle Symphony. He joined the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus at Davies Hall to revive the role of Manfred in Jake Heggie’s poignant For a Look or a Touch (another role he created). Mr. Smith starred as Aaron in the world premiere of Ricky Ian Gordon’s Morning Star at Cincinnati Opera, for which he won outstanding reviews. He sang Adam Brant in Mourning Becomes Electra at Florida Grand Opera; Tadeusz in The Passenger in the US premiere of David Pountney’s production at both Houston Grand Opera and Lincoln Center Festival; and Fritz in Die tote Stadt at Dallas Opera. Mr. Smith was honored to sing the role of Lieutenant Audebert in Silent Night in Fort Worth Opera’s presentation of Kevin Puts’ Pulitzer Prize winning opera.
Smith made his European guest artist debut at the Berliner Staatsoper in 2011, performing Marcello in La bohème. Fully fluent in German, Mr. Smith joined Oper Leipzig in 2009 as a resident artist. Over the following four years he sang Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Billy in The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus, Leandre in The Love for Three Oranges, Whitelaw Savory in One Touch of Venus, Marcello in La bohème, and Guglielmo in Così fan tutte.
A regular on the concert stage, Mr. Smith made his Dallas Symphony debut in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion under the baton of Jaap van Zweden, and debuted with the San Antonio Symphony for the North American premiere of Vier Präludien und Ernste Gesänge, Detlef Glanert’s orchestral adaptation of the beloved cycle by Brahms. Other concert repertoire includes Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony; the Requiems of Brahms, Fauré, Mozart and Duruflé; the Mass in C Minor of Mozart, Mass in G Minor and Serenade to Music of Vaughan Williams; Bach’s B Minor Mass, numerous Cantatas, and Weihnachts Oratorium; Handel’s Messiah and L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato; and Haydn’s The Creation and Lord Nelson Mass.
Morgan has collaborated with prolific conductors such as Jaap van Zweden, Donald Runnicles, Itzhak Perlman, James Conlon, Ulf Schirmer, Christopher Allen, Robert Spano, Markus Stenz, Jacques LaCombe, Andreas Stöhr, Gerard Schwarz, Matthew Halls, Patrick Summers, Eduardo Mueller, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Sebastian Lang-Lessing, Joseph Colaneri, George Manahan, Ramón Tebar, Jack Everly, Joseph Mechavich, James Meena, Emmanuel Villaume, Ken Masur, John DeMain, Ari Pelto, and Antony Walker.
Hailed by Opera News as an “excellent and exciting bass-baritone,” Peter Morgan has quickly developed a reputation as a dynamic performer at a number of companies nationally and internationally. Known for his versatility–in addition to the classic operatic canon–Mr. Morgan has made a name for himself as an interpreter of new music with several regional and world premieres to his name, including Jason and the Argonauts by Gregory Spears with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Songbird by James Lowe and Kelly Rourke with The Glimmerglass Festival, the recent landmark production of John Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles with L’Opéra Royal de Versailles (which is available to stream now on Medici TV), and the world premiere film of The Copper Queen by Clint Borzoni and John de los Santos with Arizona Opera,which was nominated for Best Digital Opera in the International Opera Awards.
2022 -2023 season highlights include a return to Arizona Opera in the fall to sing Truffaldino in their production of Ariadne auf Naxos, Max Detweiler in The Sound of Music, and the Speaker in The Magic Flute. Mr. Morgan will also perform the role of Monterone in Intermountain Opera Bozeman‘s production of Rigoletto.
During the 2021-2022 season, Mr. Morgan made his house debut with Opera San José singing Moralès and covering Escamillo in Carmen. He also returned to Opera Carolina to sing the role of The Colonel in Zach Redler’s powerful opera, The Falling and the Rising. In the spring of 2022, Morgan returned to Lyric Opera of Kansas City to sing Angelotti and cover Scarpia in Tosca, and that summer he also returned to The Glimmerglass Festival to sing Zuniga in Carmen and Max Detweiler in The Sound of Music for Francesca Zambello’s final season as General Director.
In recent seasons, Mr. Morgan made his house debut with Arizona Opera, originating the role of Sugar Dog in their filmed world premiere of The Copper Queen by Clint Borzoni and John de los Santos (which went on to become an official selection in the Arizona Film Festival). Mr. Morgan also returned to The Glimmerglass Festival singing the role of Ferrando in Il Trovatore and Don Pedro in Songbird, a world premiere reimagining of Offenbach’s La Perichole set in 1920’s New Orleans with Jazz orchestration by Jim Lowe and libretto by Kelly Rourke. In the fall of 2021, Mr. Morgan made his debut with Lyric Opera of Kansas City singing King Balthazar in Amahl and the Night Visitors.
Morgan also made his house debut in 2020 with Opera Carolina, singing Colline in La bohéme, and then reprised the same role with Toledo Opera. He also sang Publio in The Shepherd School of Music’s production of La clemenza di Tito (which was cut short due to COVID-19). Mr. Morgan was then to perform Timur in Turandot with Opera Grand Rapids before returning to The Glimmerglass Festival to cover Leporello in Don Giovanni, as well as Gernot in their production of Wagner’s Die Feen–all of which were either canceled or postponed due to the continuing pandemic.
Mr. Morgan is a recent graduate of the prestigious Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, where he was the Artist Diploma in Opera Studies Fellow, and was also awarded the coveted Brockman Scholarship for Opera.
Mexican-American bass-baritone Richard Ollarsaba, praised by The Washington Post for his “meltingly smooth bass-baritone” and for “evoking a young Ruggero Raimondi in looks and manner”, represented the USA in the 2019 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition, was a member of the prestigious Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago for three seasons, and a grand finalist in the 2013 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
This season he debuts with the Glimmerglass Festival,Lyric Opera of Kansas City, and Portland Opera as Escamillo in their respective productions of Bizet’s Carmen. He will also debut with Chicago Opera Theater in the world-premiere opera The Life and Death(s) of Alan Turing composed by Justine F. Chen, and will return to the role of the Count in Le nozze di Figaro with Knoxville Opera. On the concert stage, he will be seen as the bass soloist in performances of Messiah with the Palm Beach Symphony, Pulcinella with the Salisbury Symphony and returning to The Master Chorale of South Florida for performances of Verdi’s Requiem.
Making several debuts in the 2021/22 season, he debuted with New Zealand Opera as Figaro in their national touring production of Le nozze di Figaro, Opera Grand Rapids and Opera Carolina in the title role of Don Giovanni, the Jacksonville Symphony in their performances of Puccini’s La bohème in his role debut as Schaunard, the Palm Beach Symphony as the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem, and returned to Virginia Opera as Count Almaviva in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro.
Recent season credits include a debut in the title role of Don Giovanni with Opera Hong Kong, the title role in Le nozze di Figaro with Minnesota Opera, Escamillo in Carmen with Kentucky Opera, Minnesota Opera, North Carolina Opera, Tulsa Opera, Annapolis Opera, and the Barhabor Music Festival. He has been a repeat featured soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, notably in performances of Haydn’s Mass in Time of War and Handel’s Messiah.
While at the Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago, his tenure included productions of La Traviata, Capriccio, Anna Bolena, Tosca, The Passenger, Otello, Madama Butterfly, Parsifal and the title role in Don Giovanni – stepping into the iconic part with a few hours’ notice. Other operatic engagements include Asdrubale in Rossini’s La pietra del paragone, Fallito in Gassmann’s L’opera seria, Angelotti in Tosca, and Luciano in Musto’s Bastianello with Wolf Trap Opera; the title role in Don Giovanni with Intermountain Opera Bozeman; Timur in Turandot and Rochefort in Anna Bolena with Minnesota Opera; Ferrando in Il trovatore with North Carolina Opera, Colline in La bohème and Reverend John Hale in Ward’s The Crucible with Piedmont Opera, Pistola in Falstaff with Opera Omaha, and Antonio in Le nozze di Figaro with Opera Cleveland.
In addition to performances on the operatic stage, Mr. Ollarsaba appears regularly in concert and recital. He has been the bass soloist with the Mainly Mozart Festival in a rare performance of Mozart’s Thamos, König in Ägypten, Handel’s Messiah with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony, and Kansas City Symphony, Bach’s St. John’s Passion with the Madison Bach Musicians, Dvorak’s Te Deum with Apollo Chorus of Chicago, Bernstein’s Songfest at the Ravinia Festival, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Master Chorale of South Florida and Macon Symphony Orchestra, Verdi’s Requiem with the Salisbury Symphony, and Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy in his debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood. That concert was a gala celebration of the venerable festival’s 75th birthday and was telecast nationally on PBS.
A native of Tempe, Arizona, Richard Ollarsaba received his Bachelor of Music from the Cleveland Institute of Music and his Master of Music and post-graduate certificate from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. In addition to the Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago, he trained at Minnesota Opera, Music Academy of the West, Chautauqua Opera, Aspen Music Festival, Tanglewood, and Wolf Trap Opera.
Grammy Award-winning Bass-Baritone Donovan Singletary’s 2023-2024 season includes house debuts with Washington National Opera (as Count Capulet in Roméo et Juliette) and Pacific Opera Victoria (as Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro), a return to Opera Carolina for Samson et Dalila, and symphonic engagements including Mozart’s Requiem with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra.
2022-2023 engagements included Mr. Singletary’s debut with the Berlin Philharmonic, a return to English National Opera for It’s A Wonderful Life, debuts as Crown in Porgy and Bess with North Carolina Opera and Opera Carolina, a debut with Orchestra Iowa singing Verdi’s Requiem, concerts in tribute to Jules Bledsoe, and three university residencies, presenting masterclasses and recitals.
After an historic and critically acclaimed opening to The Metropolitan Opera‘s 2021-2022 season, performing two lead roles in Terence Blanchard’s Fire Shut Up In My Bones, Singletary enjoyed debuts with Glyndebourne and the BBC Proms. He also portrayed Antron McCray in Anthony Davis’ tragic true life story of The Central Park Five (winner of the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Music) with Portland Opera.
Mr. Singletary returned to The Metropolitan Opera during the 2019-2020 season for the role of Jake in that company’s Grammy Award-winning, season opening production of Porgy and Bess. Other engagements that season included the roles of Crown in Atlanta Opera’s Porgy and Bess and Colline in Fort Worth Opera‘s La Bohème, which was ultimately postponed due to the pandemic. Singletary also sang Jake in Porgy and Bess in two productions co-produced by Dutch National Opera and English National Opera, as well as Crown in Porgy and Bess with Grange Park Opera in London.
Highlights of the 2018-2019 season included performances of Philip Glass’ Passages with Pacific Symphony at Carnegie Hall and the role of Figaro in Minnesota Opera’s Le nozze di Figaro, and the 2017-2018 season included performances as Leporello in Don Giovanni with Nashville Opera and his debut at Teatro alla Scala as Jake in Porgy and Bess.
Other recent seasons have included performances with The Metropolitan Opera in productions of Giulio Cesare, Un Ballo in Maschera, Macbeth, Gianni Schicchi, Don Carlo, Pelleas & Melisande, Tosca, La Boheme, The Enchanted Island, The Tales of Hoffman, and The Bartered Bride. Singletary has performed with Seattle Opera as Zuniga in Carmen, Monterone in Rigoletto, and Jake in Porgy and Bess, where he provided “a beautiful and powerful bass-baritone” (The SunBreak). He also portrayed the title role in Boito’s Mefistofele with Knoxville Opera, and Achilla in Giulio Cesare and Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro with Fort Worth Opera. For Figaro, he was praised for his “comic timing and strong vocal presence” (D Magazine).
On the concert stage, Mr. Singletary has appeared with the Deutsche Radio Philharmonic, the Latvian National Opera, the Orchestre Lamourez, and The Metropolitan Opera during their “Summer in the Parks” concert series. He also made a Carnegie Hall debut singing Mark Hayes’ Te Deum and returned soon thereafter to sing Fauré’s Requiem and Haydn’s Paukenmesse before being invited back to sing Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass and Mozart’s Solemn Vespers.
Mr. Singletary made his professional debut as Hermann in The Tales of Hoffman as a Gerdine Young Artist with Opera Theatre of St. Louis and as Second Nazarene in Salome with The Metropolitan Opera. That season, he also sang concerts with the Marina del Rey Symphony Orchestra, Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Aspen Chamber Symphony.
Mr. Singletary has won numerous national and international awards, including Grand Prize in The Metropolitan Opera National Council Grand Finals, where he was the youngest male winner in that competition’s history. Upon winning the competition, the company’s then-General Director, Joseph Volpe, bestowed on Singletary the esteemed Joseph Volpe Award.