Mark Delavan basbaryton
A singer of “incisive vocal power and fierce theatrical acuity”, Mark Delavan is sought after throughout the United States and Europe for the most demanding roles in his repertoire. He regularly appears in the title roles of Der Fliegende Holländer, Falstaff and Rigoletto, and as Iago in Otello, Scarpia in Tosca, Jochanaan in Salome, and Amonasro in Aida. In the summer of 2011, Mr. Delavan completed his first performances as Wotan/Wanderer in Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen for San Francisco Opera’s new production by Francesca Zambello. The San Francisco Examiner said, “A great new Wotan has arrived. Mark Delavan is both majestic and heartbreakingly human. His acting, diction and warm, broad voice impress throughout…When he stumbles under the weight of his sorrow, when he spits out words of anger, Delavan joins the historic line of Wotans to remember.”
In the 2015/2016 season, Mark Delavan returns to the Deutsche Oper Berlin as Jupiter in Die liebe der Danae and Alfio/Tonio in the double-bill of Cavalleria rusticana/Pagliacci. He returns to Pittsburgh Opera in the title role of Nabucco and debuts as Jochanaan in Salome at Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova under Fabio Luisi. He also sings Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West at Santa Fe Opera. Last season, he returned to San Francisco Opera and the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Scarpia. He also created the role of Giovanni in the world premiere of Marco Tutino’s Two Women (La Ciociara) at San Francisco Opera. In concert, Mr. Delavan was heard in Kurt Weill’s The Road of Promise with the Collegiate Chorale at Carnegie Hall and with the New York Choral Society in Mendelssohn’s St. Paul.
Recently, Mr. Delavan took his interpretation of Wotan to the Deutsche Oper Berlin after successful performances at the Metropolitan Opera under Fabio Luisi in the 2012/2013 cycles of Der Ring des Nibelungen. He was seen as Don Carlo in La forza del destino at Washington National Opera, as well as the Dutchman with Arizona Opera and the Four Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann at Palm Beach Opera. Other highlights include performances of Gianciotto in Zandonai’s Francesca da Rimini at the Metropolitan Opera, the title role in Rigoletto for Pittsburgh Opera, Scarpia in Tosca for San Francisco Opera, the Dutchman in Der Fliegende Holländer at the Princeton Music Festival, and Amonasro in Aida at the Ravinia Festival with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under James Conlon.
Mr. Delavan was heard as Wotan for Deutsche Oper Berlin, in performances of Das Rheingold and Siegfried with Donald Runnicles. He was heard as Scarpia in performances for the Canadian Opera Company and Pittsburgh Opera, and returned to Santa Fe Opera as Mandryka in a new production of Arabella.
Mr. Delavan expanded his repertoire, adding the roles of Jupiter in Die Liebe der Danae for Deutsche Oper Berlin, and Renato in Un ballo in Maschera for Lyric Opera of Chicago. He was also heard as Iago for Deutsche Oper Berlin and Opera Company of Philadelphia, Jack Rance in La Fanciulla del West for Den Jyske Opera, Jochanaan for Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu, Falstaff for Pittsburgh Opera, Amonasro for Atlanta Opera, Wotan in Das Rheingold and Die Walküre, and as Scarpia, both with Deutsche Oper Berlin, as Jochanaan in concert for the Prague State Opera, and in his first performances as Wotan in Die Walküre for San Francisco Opera.
Among his operatic credits Mark Delavan counts numerous opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Berliner Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper, Lyric Opera of Chicago, New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera and Washington National Opera, to name a few. He has performed at such venues as Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall, and his festival credits include the BBC Proms, Edinburgh Festival (UK), Britten Festival (Italy), Spoleto Festival, U.S.A., the Metropolitan Opera’s Concerts in the Park, and the Saito Kinen Festival (Japan), among others.
At the Metropolitan Opera, Mr. Delavan has earned public and critical acclaim for his company debut as Amonasro in Aida. He has also sung the title roles of Simon Boccanegra and Nabucco, and has appeared as Scarpia, Tomsky in Pique Dame, Alfio in Cavalleria Rusticana, Carlo in La Forza del Destino and as Gerard in a major revival of Andrea Chenier.
The press has praised Mark Delavan’s performances as Amfortas in Lyric Opera of Chicago’s new production of Parsifal, and his creation of the role of Snooks Brenner in the world premiere of William Bolcom’s A Wedding, directed by Robert Altman and conducted by Dennis Russell Davies. With Lyric Opera of Chicago, Mr. Delavan has appeared as Alfio/Tonio in Cavalleria Rusticana/I pagliacci, and as as Germont in La traviata. He has also appeared in new productions by Robert Carsen of Gluck’s Iphigenie en Tauride (Louis Langrèe conducting) and by David McVicar of Verdi’s Il trovatore (Bruno Bartoletti conducting).
Mr. Delavan made his debut to great acclaim with the Los Angeles Opera in the role of Iago. The Daily Variety praised, “In his long-overdue company debut in his signature role of Iago, American baritone Mark Delavan serves as dramatic focus, from his first, dark, poison-tipped tones onward and downward.” He returned for performances as Michele in Puccini’s Il tabarro.
A popular performer with the New York City Opera, Mr. Delavan has sung in numerous productions with the company, including the title roles in Der Fliegende Holländer, Rigoletto, Macbeth, and Falstaff, as well as starring in the title role of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd to great critical acclaim. Mr. Delavan’s NYCO credits also include the roles of the four villains in Les Contes d’Hoffman, Scarpia (telecast live on PBS for ‘Live From Lincoln Center’), Ezio in Attila, Escamillo in Carmen, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, the Duke of Nottingham in Roberto Devereux and in new productions of The Ballad of Baby Doe as Horace Tabor, Il Trittico as Michele and Gianni Schicchi and Salome.
Mr. Delavan made his United Kingdom debut with the 2003 Edinburgh Festival in the title role of Verdi’s Macbeth and his European stage debut in 2004 in two new productions with the Bavarian State Opera in Germany, performing the title role of Rigoletto and the role of Don Carlo in La Forza del Destino. In the 2005/06 season, Mr. Delavan made his Royal Opera House, Covent Garden debut as Jack Rance in a major revival of La Fanciulla del West and in 2006/07, debuted at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin as Jochanaan. In summer 2007, he debuted at the Saito Kinen Festival as Tomsky in Pique Dame, conducted by Seiji Ozawa.
Born in Princeton, New Jersey, Mr. Delavan earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Oral Roberts University. He was a national finalist of the Metropolitan Opera auditions and an Adler Fellow with the San Francisco Opera. When not performing, Mr. Delavan resides outside of New York City with his wife and children.
(Updated August 2015)