American baritone BRIAN MULLIGAN (Pater Ecstaticus) is the 2006 winner of the International Hans Gabor Belvedere Vocal Competition, only the third American in the competition’s history to win this coveted prize. He has been praised by Opera News for his “velvety, evenly, and effortlessly produced baritone and nuance-rich phrasing” and by Opera Now for his “commanding presence [and] booming sound.”
In the 2011/12 season, Brian Mulligan will return to the Metropolitan Opera as Valentin in a new production of Gounod’s Faust, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin. He returns to San Francisco Opera for a role debut in the title role in John Adams’ Nixon in China. Mulligan will also make his debut with the Washington National Opera as Enrico in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor in a production by David Alden, conducted by Philippe Auguin; he makes a debut with the Lyric Opera of Chicago in this same role in a new production by Catherine Malfitano. Mulligan’s orchestral engagements include a debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, singing Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 under Gustavo Dudamel. In addition to performances at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil will also travel to Caracas, Venezuela for additional performances and a live, HD telecast of the concert that will be seen in 450 movie theaters around North America. Mulligan will also return to the Phoenix Symphony with Michael Christie to perform Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn and join the George London Foundation for a recital with soprano Lisette Oropesa and pianist Ken Noda.
A busy 2010/11 season brought Brian Mulligan to San Francisco Opera as Albert in Werther, Ragueneau in Cyrano de Bergerac, and Sharpless in Madama Butterfly. He also appeared at Opera Theatre of St. Louis to great acclaim in the title role of Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer and debuted with San Diego Opera as Valentin. With the American Symphony Orchestra, Mulligan was seen in the role of Titus in Magnard’s rarely performed Bérénice at Carnegie Hall. Symphonic highlights included a return to the Ravinia Festival under James Conlon for Mahler’s Das klagende Lied and Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Phoenix Symphony under Michael Christie.
Operatic highlights of recent seasons included Mulligan’s return to San Francisco Opera as Valentin in Faust, a return to English National Opera as Enrico in the celebrated David Alden production, following his debut there as Sharpless in Anthony Minghella’s production of Madama Butterfly. Other highlights included a return to Los Angeles Opera as Prometheus in a new production of Walter Braunfels’s Die Vögel as well as Melot in that company’s Tristan und Isolde, both conducted by Conlon; Fiorello in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and a Kinderstimmen in Die Frau ohne Schatten at the Metropolitan Opera; Ford in Falstaff with Japan’s Saito Kinen Festival, conducted by Seiji Ozawa; Jake Wallace in La Fanciulla del West, Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro with Harry Bicket, and Masetto in Don Giovanni with New York City Opera; Malatesta in Don Pasquale and Sharpless at Palm Beach Opera; Silvio in I Pagliacci with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra in New Zealand; Zurga in Les Pêcheurs de Perles at Opera Colorado; Lescaut in Manon Lescaut at New Orleans Opera; Tarquinius in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia at Central City Opera; Prometheus in Die Vögel with Julius Rudel, and Capulet in Roméo et Juliette at the Spoleto USA Festival.
Puccini’s La bohème has served as a calling card work for Brian Mulligan where he has performed the roles of Marcello at San Francisco Opera (under the baton of Nicola Luisotti), Houston Grand Opera, New York City Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera and Schaunard at Los Angeles Opera and New York City Opera.
On the concert stage, recent seasons included a Chicago Symphony debut in the world premiere performances of Songs for Adam, a cycle of meditations on Adam and Eve by composer James Primosch and poet Susan Stewart. These performances were conducted by Sir Andrew Davis. Other highlights include Handel’s Judas Maccabæus with Conlon and members of the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra, a debut with the Cleveland Orchestra in Vaughan Williams’ A Sea Symphony; concert versions of Der Kaiser von Atlantis with Houston Grand Opera, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Ravinia Festival under the baton of Conlon, and Mendelssohn’s Paulus with the Houston Symphony.
A graduate of the Juilliard School, Mulligan has also been awarded a Richard Tucker Career Grant and a Sara Tucker Study Grant and the George London Prize and holds dual citizenship in the United States and Ireland.