American bass-baritone EVAN HUGHES has been praised for his “appealing clarity and emotional heft” (The New York Times) and his “burnished tone” (Opera News).
The 2014/15 season sees Hughes return to the Semperoper in Dresden in a variety of roles ranging from Handel (Zoroastro in Orlando and Achilla in Giulio Cesare) to Rossini (Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia), Verdi (Pietro in Simon Boccanegra), Puccini (Colline in La bohème), and contemporary music (Emma Becker in Peter Ronnefeld’s Nachtausgabe). In concert, Hughes will return to Carnegie Hall for the world premiere of Elliott Carter’s The American Sublime with the Met Chamber Ensemble and James Levine, make his Los Angeles Philharmonic debut in the West Coast premiere of Pintscher’s songs from Solomon’s garden with the composer conducting (having just recorded the piece with the Ensemble InterContemporain and Pintscher in Paris), and make his debut in Fauré’s Requiem with Voices of Ascension.
Last season Hughes returned to the Metropolitan Opera as Starveling in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and became a member of the Junges Ensemble at the Sächsische Staatsoper in Dresden, where he sang various leading roles, including Don Alfonso and Don Basilio. In the summer Hughes made his debut at the Santa Fe Opera as Zuniga in Carmen and Don Fernando in Fidelio. On the concert stage, Hughes appeared with the New York Philharmonic in a program of contemporary pieces curated by Matthias Pintscher and presented at MOMA and performed on the Metropolitan Museum’s recital series in a program devoted to French songs of the time of the sculptor Carpeaux, alongside Susan Graham and Brian Zeger.
A recent alumnus of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development program, Hughes scored a great personal success as Don Alfonso in a production of Così fan tutte directed by Stephen Wadsworth and conducted by Alan Gilbert at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater at Lincoln Center. Other engagements in the 2012/13 season included the premiere of a John Glover piece with the New York Youth Symphony.
Prior to that, Hughes was seen as Aronte in Gluck’s Armide, presented by the Met in collaboration with the Juilliard School; he also performed Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia at the Teatro Petruzzelli in Bari, Italy with Lorin Maazel and reprised the role in the summer at the Castleton Festival, where he also sang the bass solo in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, both projects being conducted by Maazel. In concert he appeared in Schubert’s Mass No. 6 with the San Diego Symphony, followed by Matthias Pintscher’s songs from Solomon’s garden with the BBC Scottish Symphony, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and at the Aspen Music Festival.
A champion of contemporary music, Hughes appeared in Elliott Carter’s Syringa with the Met Chamber Ensemble at Zankel Hall (Carnegie) and the Tanglewood Music Festival, conducted both times by James Levine, and more recently he premiered Carter’s Three Explorations at Alice Tully Hall with the Axiom Ensemble and Jeffrey Milarsky. Another milestone in the bass-baritone’s exploration of Elliott Carter’s music was On Conversing with Paradise as part of a festival of cultural exchange entitled Ascending Dragon in Los Angeles, Hanoi, and other parts of Vietnam.
Evan Hughes appeared as Leporello in Don Giovanni at the Curtis Opera Theatre and the Tanglewood Music Festival (conducted by James Levine). He performed as José Tripaldi in the Philadelphia premiere of Osvaldo Golijov’s Ainadamar and Argento’s Postcard from Morocco, which was released on Albany Records.
After winning the grand prize in the Marilyn Horne Foundation Competition, Evan Hughes gave critically acclaimed recitals in NYC for the “On Wings of Song” series, and for “The Song Continues” Gala, marking his Carnegie Hall debut. The New York Times called him a “naturally communicative artist.” Returning to Carnegie Hall in collaboration with Dawn Upshaw and Ensemble ACJW, Hughes sang David Bruce’s Klezmer-inspired Piosenki, led by Stephen Prutsman. He also performed the work alongside Upshaw with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. He made his European recital debut in Denmark with pianist Mikael Eliasen in Skagen’s Sommermusik series. He has also given recitals for the William Walton Foundation at La Mortella in Ischia, Italy, and with the American Academy in Berlin, Germany.
Hughes attended the Curtis Institute of Music and was a regional winner and a national semi-finalist in the 2010 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.