David Portillo

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Praised by Opera News for “high notes with ease, singing with a luxuriant warm glow that seduced the ear as he bounded about the stage with abandon,” American tenor David Portillo has established himself as one of the leading artists of his generation. In the 2017-2018 season, David Portillo will make two role debuts at the Metropolitan Opera, first as Eduardo in Thomas Adès’ North American premiere of The Exterminating Angel, then as Camille de Rosillon in The Merry Widow. In Europe, Mr. Portillo will make two important house debuts, at the Deutsche Oper Berlin as Count Libenskof in Il viaggio a Reims, and the Bayerische Staatsoper as Pasquale in Orlando Paladino. Finally, David Portillo will perform Count Almaviva in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Houston Grand Opera, and Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni for his debut with Dallas Opera.  Orchestral highlights include Mozart’s Requiem with Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl.

In the 2016-2017 season, David Portillo made his Australian debut singing Ferrando in Così fan tutte with Opera Australia, in a new production by Sir David McVicar, conducted by Jonathan Darlington. Other roles included a return to the Metropolitan Opera as Jacquino in Fidelio conducted by Sebastian Weigle, Tamino in Die Zauberflöte for his debut with Oper Frankfurt, Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail for a debut with Dutch National Opera, Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola with San Diego Opera, and Dr. Richardson in the world-premiere performances of Breaking the Waves at Opera Philadelphia, composed by Missy Mazzoli, with libretto by Royce Vavrek. Concert performances included an international tour of Handel’s Ariodante in the role of Lurcanio, conducted by Harry Bicket with tour stops in New York, London, Vienna and Paris, among others. In Japan, Mr. Portillo performed Count Almaviva with Marc Minkowski and Ensemble Kanazawa.

In the 2015-2016 season, David Portillo made his Metropolitan Opera debut as Count Almaviva. Of the performance, the New York Times said that he, “displayed a warm, nuanced tone.” Mr. Portillo also returned to Lyric Opera of Chicago as Andres in Wozzeck in a new production by Sir David McVicar, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis, and to Palm Beach Opera in a role debut as Ernesto in Don Pasquale. European engagements included his debut at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées as Pedrillo, and the tenor soloist in Schumann’s Das Paradies und die Peri with the Netherlands Radio Orchestra. Mr. Portillo concluded the season with a return to the Glyndebourne Festival as David in Sir David McVicar’s production of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg.

Past seasons on the operatic stage include appearances at Lyric Opera of Chicago (David in Die Meistersinger, Trin, La fanciulla del West), Houston Grand Opera (Tamino), Washington National Opera (Don Ramiro), Metropolitan Opera/Juilliard Opera (Renaud, Armide), Opera Philadelphia (Don Ottavio, Don Giovanni), Opera Theatre of St. Louis (Don Ottavio; Ferrando), Pittsburgh Opera (Belmonte, Die Entführung aus dem Serail; Count Almaviva), Fort Worth Opera (Don Ottavio), Tulsa Opera (Count Almaviva), Virginia Opera (Ferrando), Wolf Trap Opera (Narciso, Il turco in Italia; Flute, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Dayton Opera (Tonio in La fille du régiment), Arizona Opera (Ralph Rackstraw, HMS Pinafore, Tonio), Palm Beach Opera (Count Almaviva), the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Italy (Ferdinand, The Tempest), and the Saito Kinen Festival in Japan (Gonzalve, L’heure espagnole). Mr. Portillo has also made important European debuts in recent seasons with Wiener Staatsoper (Count Almaviva), Festival d’Aix-en-Provence (Pedrillo, Lurcanio), Salzburg Festival (Don Gaspar in Donizetti’s La favorite), and with Opera Angers-Nantes (Narciso).

With orchestra, David Portillo has appeared as the tenor soloist in Verdi’s Requiem and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Phoenix Symphony, Elmhurst Symphony, and Colorado Music Festival, and Haydn’s Creation with the Colorado Music Festival. In Handel’s Messiah, he has performed with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Kansas City Symphony and Richmond Symphony. With Washington Concert Opera, he has performed Tebaldo in concert performances of I Capuleti e i Montecchi. He has also appeared in recital with Steven Blier and the Schwabacher Debut Recital under the auspices of the San Francisco Opera Center, where the San Francisco Chronicle lauded that his “tenor rang out clearly and brightly, his diction was exemplary, and he moved with easy assurance from the 17th century to the 20th.”

An alumnus of the Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Merola Opera Program at San Francisco Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera in Vienna, Virginia, Mr. Portillo has added to his repertoire the Chevalier de la Force in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Nadir in Les pêcheurs de perles, Fenton in Falstaff,Alfredo in La traviata, the title role in Albert Herring, and Sam Kaplan in Street Scene.