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Recognized worldwide as one of today’s most exciting vocal stars, Denyce Graves continues to gather unparalleled popular and critical acclaim in performances on four continents. USA Today identified her as one of the “singers most likely to be an operatic superstar of the 21st Century,” and after a recent performance in Atlanta, the Journal-Constitution exclaimed, “if the human voice has the power to move you, you will be touched by Denyce Graves.” Her career has taken her to the world’s great opera houses and concert halls. The combination of her expressive, rich vocalism, elegant stage presence, and exciting theatrical abilities allows her to pursue a wide breadth of operatic portrayals as well as delight audiences in concert and recital appearances. Denyce Graves has become particularly well-known to operatic audiences for her portrayals of the title roles in Carmen and Samson et Dalila. These signature roles have brought Ms. Graves to the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna Staatsoper, Royal Opera – Covent Garden, San Francisco Opera, Opéra National de Paris, Lyric Opera of Chicago, The Washington Opera, Bayerische Staatsoper, Arena di Verona, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Opernhaus Zürich, Teatro Real in Madrid, Houston Grand Opera, Dallas Opera, Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Los Angeles Opera, and the Festival Maggio Musicale in Florence.
Class of 1997 – A native of Washington, DC, he made his debut with Washington National Opera in Un Ballo in Maschera (Count Ribbing). He has performed with LA Opera (Die Gezeichneten), and Atlanta Opera (Aida). He is a San Francisco Opera Alder Fellowship alumnus; as an alumnus of the 2007 San Francisco Opera Merola Program, he created the role of Tobias in the world premiere of Pasatieri’s Hotel Casablanca. Roles as a Resident Artist at the Academy of Vocal Arts include Don Basilio (Il Barbiere di Siviglia) and Count des Grieux (Massenet’s Manon). A Filene Young Artist at Wolf Trap Opera Center, he returns there in the 2011 season for Wolf-Ferrari’s Le Donne Curiose (Ottavio), Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd (Judge Turpin) with the National Symphony Orchestra, and Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffman (Crespel/Schlemil). Kenneth was once asked, “what do you think has brought you to this point in your life?” His answer was, “ I have an undying belief that the universe takes care of people who do what they love and love what they do.”