American baritone James Taylor has been described as "...impressive... a rich, focused baritone," "Richly musical," and "superb...his rich voice has great beauty as well as dramatic power." At home in opera as well as the concert and recital stages, he has appeared with numerous opera houses and symphony orchestras including the New York City Opera National Company, San Francisco Opera's Western Opera Theatre, Central City Opera, Hawaii Opera Theatre, and Connecticut Grand Opera, the Arkansas Symphony, the Alabama Symphony, the Chattanooga Symphony, the Riverside Symphonium, the Choral Society of Durham, and the Richmond Choral Society. Mr. Taylor has also given recitals in the US, Europe, and Asia, including recital tours of the Netherlands and Malaysia. He made his Alice Tully Hall debut as Claudio in Berlioz' Beatrice et Benedict in the New York premiere of the work, and was chosen as a member of the San Francisco Opera's Merola Program in 1993, where he performed Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus for the company at Villa Montalvo and on tour with Western Opera Theatre. He was a featured soloist with the National Chorale for its performances of Händel's Messiah in Avery Fisher Hall.
Mr. Taylor has appeared in a variety of operatic roles including Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia , Marcello in La Boheme , Germont in La Traviata , Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus , Danilo in The Merry Widow , Escamillo in Carmen , Figaro and the Count in Le Nozze di Figaro , Dandini in La Cenerentola , Mercutio in Romeo et Juliette , and Sharpless in Madama Butterfly . As a soloist, Mr. Taylor has performed such works as Carmina Burana , Ein Deutsches Requiem , Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 , the Requiems of Faure and Durufle, Bach's Johannes Passion , Magnificat , and Weihnachts Oratorium , Haydn's The Creation and The Seasons , Mahler's Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen , Ravel's Don Quichotte et Dulcinee , Dona Nobis Pacem and The Five Mystical Songs of Vaughan-Williams.
Upcoming performances include recitals of Schumann's Dichterliebe and Ravel's Don Quichotte a Dulcinee in Richmond and Washington DC, baritone soloist in Purcell's Come Ye Sons of Art and Schubert's Mass in G with the Richmond Choral Society, baritone soloist in Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem with the Choral Society of Durham, Germont in La Traviata with the Asheville Lyric Opera, Cantor in Bloch's Avodath Hakodesh with the combined choirs of Vienna Presbyterian and Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation, Mostly Gershwin with the New Dominion Chorale in Washington DC, a "Pops" Concert with the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra, and a return to Ash Lawn Highland as Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music . Mr. Taylor will make his debut with the Opera Company of North Carolina as Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor in January 2008, Opera Carolina as Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus in May 2008, and will sing the Baritone solos in Vaughan-Williams' Sea Symphony with the Oratorio Society of Charlottesville-Albemarle in March 2008. He will make a return to the Helen Keller Festival for two recitals, a recital for the Grace and Holy Trinity Concert Series in Richmond, the baritone solos in Carmina Burana with the University of Virginia, and the baritone solos in the Durufle Requiem in a memorial concert for Melvin Brown with the Augusta Oratorio Society.
Mr. Taylor holds degrees from Birmingham Southern College and Yale University. He resides in Richmond, VA with his wife, Sheridan, and their two daughters, Virginia and Margaret.
Opera Carolina Performances:
Die Fledermaus (2007–2008)