John Chest

Baritone

Biography

American baritone John Chest’s “presence and delivery complement the dark, rich colours in his voice” (Opera Now). Highlights of his 2021-22 season include Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen with the Orchestra National de Lille, a concert tour with Maxim Emelyanychev and Il Pomo D’Oro of Handel’s Theodora alongside compatriots Joyce DiDonato, Lisette Oropesa and Michael Spyres, and a thrilling debut as Rodrigue in a new production of Don Carlos at Theater Basel.

Recent Operatic engagements include  Billy Budd (title role) at Deutsche Oper Berlin and San Francisco Opera;  Pelléas et Mélisande (title role) at Glyndebourne; Albert Werther at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées; Nick Carraway The Great Gatsby for Staatsoper Dresden, Valentin Faust for Théâtre du Capitole Toulouse and Teatro Real Madrid; Don Giovanni (title role) for Angers-Nantes Opéra;  Figaro Il barbiere di Siviglia, Papageno Die Zauberflöte, Ford Falstaff, Silvio Pagliacci at Deutsche Oper Berlin, Guglielmo Cosi fan tutte for the Bayerische Staatsoper, Hamburgische Staatsoper and Deutsche Oper Berlin; Il Conte Almaviva Le nozze di Figaro for Grand Theatre de la Ville de Luxembourg, Opera Philadelphia and Deutsche Oper Berlin;  Marcello La bohème at Washington National Opera and Semperoper Dresden; Nardo La finta giardiniera and Demetrius A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, and Ned Keen Peter Grimes for Norwegian Opera.

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Reviews

“The title role was interpreted by American baritone, John Chest, and with panache. Chest appealed right from the start, his voice beautiful in its sonority, his conviction embedded in each note. His timbre was perfect, the plangent “cri de coeur” never cloying, nor a plea for sympathy. Lois Silverstein he told the Captain when he stood before him apparently going to receive a promotion. “In my hands, you would be safe.” Indeed, the audience was also safe in his hands.”

Lois Silverstein

Opera Wire

“His caramel baritone seduces audiences both live (he was a ravishing Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Aix-en-Provence) and on record, as witness his perfectly weighted contributions to the complete Fauré song cycle on Signum Classics; and his forthcoming turn as Pelléas at this summer’s Glyndebourne Festival is likely to engrave his name on the UK’s consciousness.”

Mark Valencia

Bachtrack

“John Chest campe un Posa noble et raffiné, au timbre de velours.”

“John Chest portrays a noble and refined Posa, with a velvet timbre.”

Concerto Net

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