British-American tenor, and inaugural recipient of the James McCracken and Sandra Warfield Opera Prize, Joshua Blue launches the 2019-20 season by performing Beethoven’s Symphony #9 accompanied by the National Symphony Orchestra for the Opening Festival of The REACH at the Kennedy Center. Opera engagements this season feature role debuts as Tamino in the Maurice Sendak production of Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Washington National Opera, Alfred in Johann Strauss’s Die Fledermaus at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and Don Ottavio in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with the Berkshire Opera Festival. Additional performances at Washington National Opera include singing the role of Man 1 in the D.C premiere of Jeanine Tesori’s Blue directed by the work’s librettist Tazewell Thompson and Philistine Messenger in Saint-Saëns’s Samson and Delilah conducted by John Fiore. Concerts this season will be marked with a return to Carnegie Hall to join Musica Sacra for Handel’s Messiah, his first performances in Stravinsky’s Pulcinella with the Florida Orchestra, and the premiere of a fascinating new program called Tain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do: Songs from Gay Harlem with the New York Festival of Song with pianist Steven Blier.
Last season Mr. Blue made debuts at the Kennedy Center as Alfredo in Verdi’s La Traviata with Washington National Opera and with the National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Gianandrea Noseda for Act I of Puccini’s La bohème in concert. He joined Wolf Trap Opera to sing the role of Harlekin in Ullmann’s Der Kaiser von Atlantis under conductor Geoffrey McDonald and traveled to Japan to cover the role of Monsieur Triquet in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin conducted by Fabio Luisi and directed by Peter McClintock at the Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival. Mr. Blue was tenor soloist in Verdi’s Requiem with the Oratorio Society of New York at Carnegie Hall and the Cleveland Chamber Orchestra under conductor James Gaffigan. Mr. Blue also sang the American premiere of the rarely heard Franz Liszt opera Sardanapalo at the Library of Congress. Additional roles with Washington National Opera included Monsieur Triquet in Eugene Onegin; Hippo/Holy man/Dog/Water Seller in Tesori’s The Lion, The Unicorn, and Me; and David in Benavides’s Pepito as part of the American Opera Initiative Festival.
Mr. Blue’s previous seasons have included his debut at Carnegie Hall in Handel’s Messiah with the Oratorio Society of New York; performances in Moravec’s Sanctuary Road at Merkin Concert Hall with New York Festival of Song; the American premiere of Philip Glass’s The Trial at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; and performing the roles of Scaramuccio in Ariadne auf Naxos by Richard Strauss with Austin Opera and Nemorino in Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore with the Music Academy of the West.
Mr. Blue was a semi-finalist of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and sang on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera in April of 2018. He has also received the Ellen Lopin Blair award for 1st place in the 2017 Oratorio Society of New York solo competition and was noted as an Emerging Artist in the 2017 Opera Index Competition in New York City. Mr. Blue earned his bachelor’s degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and graduated from The Juilliard School with a master’s degree, studying voice with Dr. Robert C. White, Jr. In 2018, Mr. Blue was an Apprentice Singer with Santa Fe Opera’s summer festival. He is currently in his second year as a Cafritz Young Artist with the Washington National Opera.