First Presbyterian Church of Miami. May 14, 2011. 8:00 p.m.
A star of the Metropolitan opera and stages around the world, Tenor Russell Thomas, who graduated at New World School of the Arts, will offer a solo vocal recital for Orchestra Miami with Artistic Director Elaine Rinaldi. Russell Thomas will be interpreting classic works by Beethoven, Griffes, Verdi, Britten and Vaughan Williams.
“NWSA is extremely proud of Russell’s incredible accomplishments as a rising opera star on the international music scene. I remember the first day of school in 1996, when Russell stood up to sing his first song in front of the whole class. He launched into a spiritual with a power and beauty, and I thought to myself, ‘Well, THAT’S a voice that can really go someplace!’ In the opera world, there are only a few African-American tenors that have broken through to important careers, and Russell is certainly on his way,” commented Richard Fleischman, one of Russell’s instructors during his time at New World School of the Arts.
A native of Miami, Tenor Russell Thomas is quickly establishing himself as one of the most exciting vocal and dramatic talents on the international opera and concert scene, most recently as the First-Prize winner of the prestigious “Viñas Competition” in Barcelona (First Prize, Audience Favorite and Best Tenor) and at the “Competizione dell’Opera” in Dresden.
Russell Thomas’ recent projects included his role debut as Pinkerton in MADAMA BUTTERFLY for his return to the Welsh National Opera. He was then heard at his home company, the Metropolitan Opera, first as Foresto and Uldino in a new Pierre Audi/Riccardo Muti production of Verdi’s ATTILA, then as the Steersman in DER FLIEGENDE HOLLÄNDER. Later in the season, Mr. Thomas added two more Verdi parts to his repertoire: the tenor solo in his MESSA DA REQUIEM for the Basel Opera and Cassio in OTELLO with the Cincinnati Opera. Prior to that Mr. Thomas sang Tamino in THE MAGIC FLUTE at the Metropolitan Opera, made his debut as the Duke of Mantua in RIGOLETTO with the Arizona Opera, and sang the Steersman in DER FLIEGENDE HOLLÄNDER with Atlanta Opera. He also reprised his role of the Prince for John Adams’ A FLOWERING TREE with Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Perth International Festival and the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. Among other notable debuts were the role of Mao Tse-Tung in Mr. Adams’ NIXON IN CHINA with the Pittsburgh Symphony and the composer conducting as well as concerts of Schubert’s MASS NO. 6 with the Houston Symphony and Hans Graf. Mr. Thomas has also performed with the Florida Grand Opera (Roderigo in OTELLO, Mayor Upfold in ALBERT HERRING, Ivan in Wargo’s THE MUSIC SHOP, Male Chorus in THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA), Seattle Opera (Tamino in THE MAGIC FLUTE and Rodolfo in LA BOHEME) and Tulsa Opera (Nemorino in L’ELISIR D’AMORE, Borsa in RIGOLETTO, Ruiz in IL TROVATORE, Janicku in Janacek’s DIARY OF ONE WHO VANISHED).
First Presbyterian Church of Miami
609 Brickell Avenue
Miami, FL 33131