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Operatic Tenor

Madama Butterfly, Tacoma Opera | April 19 - 21, 2024

Hailed by the New York Times for his “robust voice, agility and confidence,” operatic tenor Robert McPherson returned to the Israeli Opera for his first performance of Narraboth in Salome in the 2018-19 season. He was part of the Metropolitan Opera’s production of La Fanciulla del West and sang an invited concert of arias and ensembles with Bel Canto North Carolina. Last season, he returned to the Metropolitan Opera for Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro and stepped in as Idreno for their production of Semiramide. Additionally, McPherson’s performance as Andres in Alban Berg’s Wozzeck, culminated in the Houston Symphony’s 2018 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording in the classical category. Other recent performances include Nadir in Les Pêcheurs de Perles with English National Opera and Israeli Opera, Leopold in La Juive with Opéra national du Rhin, Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Israel Philharmonic, and Berlioz’s Requiem with the Virginia Arts Festival.

In addition to the Grammy Award winning Wozzeck, McPherson’s discography includes work as the Angel Gabriel and Shepard in Andrew T. Miller’s The Birth of Christ recorded on Sony BMG Masterworks, also shown on Public Broadcasting Service and reprised in Rome at the Vatican’s invitation; Albany Records recordings of Alva Henderson’s Nosferatu as Erik, and on Lori Laitman’s art song recording Becoming a Redwood. On Hampton Roads Music, McPherson sang the tenor solo in Berlioz’s Requiem with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, which Gramophone said, “[he] sings the challenging tenor lines… with tender urgency.” His Rossini recordings and videos include Idreno in Semiramide, Iago in Otello, Gernando/Ubaldo in Armida on Dynamic, and Arbace in Ciro in Babilonia on Opus Arte. He also sang Constantino under the baton of Jésus Lopez Cabos for the recording of Ramon Canicer’s Elena e Constantino on Dynamic.

In other appearances, McPherson made his Metropolitan Opera debut as Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro, and his debut with the Lyric Opera of Chicago singing Duca in Act III of Rigoletto at Millennium Park in the company’s annual Stars of Lyric Opera concert conducted by Sir Andrew Davis. He garnered critical acclaim as Tamino in Die Zauberflöte with English National Opera; Arnold in Guillaume Tell with Polish National Opera; Ramiro in La Cenerentola and Lindoro in L’italiana in Algeri with Washington National Opera; Peter Quint and the Prologue in The Turn of the Screw with New Israeli Opera, and the Italian Tenor in Der Rosenkavalier with San Francisco Opera. He returned to New Israeli Opera and Opera Vlaandaren for Leopold in La Juive, a role also sung at the Mikhailovsky Theater in St. Petersburg, and Utah Opera for his first performances of the Duca di Mantua in Rigoletto. He joined Teatro Real for Constantino in Carnicer’s Elena e Constantino, Lord Percy in Anna Bolena with Welsh National Opera; English National Opera, Cleveland Opera, and Israeli Opera for Nadir in Les Pêcheurs de Perles; Opera San Jose as Tom Rakewell in The Rake’s Progress and Roméo in Roméo et Juliette, Ralph Rackstraw in H.M.S. Pinafore for Caramoor Festival, Hob in the ballad opera Flora for Spoleto Festival USA, Mayor Upfold in Albert Herring with Los Angeles Opera, title role of The Impresario and as Mozart in Rismky-Korsakov’s Mozart and Salieri with Anchorage Opera, Gotham Chamber Opera as Scipione in Il Sogno di Scipione, and the Metropolitan Opera’s roster for productions of I Puritani, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, The Merry Widow, and Wozzeck.

McPherson has joined the Seattle Symphony for numerous performances of Handel’s Messiah, Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings, Bach’s Magnificat, and the Shepherd in Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex. He also sang Schumann’s Das Paradies und die Peri with the Mostly Mozart Festival, Britten’s War Requiem with the Jerusalem Symphony, Stravinsky’s Les Noces with the Houston Ballet, Rossini’s Stabat Mater with Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Santa Fe Symphony and Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Haydn’s Creation with Tacoma Master Chorale, Handel’s Judas Maccabeus with Orchestra Seattle, Verdi’s Requiem with Yakima Symphony, Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Bremerton Symphony, Bach’s Cantata No. 26 and Mozart’s Requiem with the Lake Chelan Bach Festival, Handel’s L’allegro, il Penseroso, ed il Moderato with the Northwest Chamber Orchestra, and further performances of Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings with the Mexico City Philharmonic. He sang a concert of Rossini, Donizetti, Bellini, Mozart, and Bizet with the Pressburger Symphoniker at the Schloss Esterhazy in Austria and a gala concert of opera excerpts at the Harare International Festival of the Arts in Zimbabwe.

As a Seattle native, McPherson’s self-written and produced comic show The Drunken Tenor debuted at special request of Seattle Opera BRAVO! and after multiple performances with the Seattle Fringe Festival, he won Best of Fringe. The Drunken Tenor has also appeared at Seattle’s annual Bumbershoot Festival, Café Nordo’s Knife Room and other popular venues throughout the Northwest. As an avid baseball fan, McPherson regularly sings the National Anthem for his hometown team, the Seattle Mariners.

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