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Roland Wood

British baritone Roland Wood is a rising figure on the operatic scene, with frequent appearances in Britain, Canada, and the U.S. He is a versatile singer with a repertory ranging from Mozart to John Adams. Wood was born in Britain's Berkshire county in 1974. He attended the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, moving on to the National Opera Studio in London for further work. Wood began his career as a bass-baritone but then cultivated a pure baritone voice. Prizes -- including the Webster Booth Prize in 1998, the Frederick Cox Award in 1999, and second prize at the 2000 Kathleen Ferrier Memorial Awards -- opened doors for roles in the British Isles, and Wood appeared the Glyndebourne Festival Opera in 2000, appearing as Nick Shadow in Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress under the baton of Mark Elder. Wood's 2001 debut at the Scottish Opera landed him a spot as a company principal there, and he appeared in several roles, including Papageno in Mozart's The Magic Flute, between 2002 and 2004. He made his debut at the English National Opera in 2002 and has gone on to sing a great variety of roles there, including Paolo in Verdi's Simon Boccanegra and Henry Kissinger in John Adams' Nixon in China. A stint in the Cardiff Singer of the World contest in 2003 (he made it to the semifinals) brought Wood's name and voice before a larger public. In the 2010s, Wood's fame has extended beyond Britain. He made his U.S. debut in 2012 at the Santa Fe Opera as Germont Père in Verdi's La Traviata, and followed that up in 2014 with his first appearance in Canada, as Renato in Verdi's Un ballo in maschera. Wood made his Royal Opera debut in London in 2015, appearing in several roles, and for the remainder of the 2010s, he had a busy schedule that included an appearance at the Michigan Opera Theater in Detroit. Wood has appeared in recordings on the Chandos and Opera Rara labels, among others. In 2019, he was featured in the lead role of Hyperion's recording of the rarely performed Edward Elgar oratorio Caractacus.
© James Manheim /TiVo
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