American baritone Paul La Rosa has built his operatic career on both his rich lyric sound and his physical versatility on stage. Hailed as “the total package, with a wonderful touch for physical comedy, a strong and beautiful voice and the dancing skills that one typically encounters on Broadway” he has garnered acclaim for his engaging portrayals in the standard operatic repertoire in addition to the genres of musical theater and operetta.
Mr. La Rosa's upcoming season includes a number of appearances with the Brooklyn Art Song Society, performing works by Mahler, Duparc, and Chausson, before returning to San Diego Opera to make his role debut as El Payador in Piazzolla's María de Buenos Aires.
His 2015/16 season included a return to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Cascada in The Merry Widow under Sir Andrew Davis. The 2014/15 season brought him to Houston Grand Opera, San Diego Opera, and the Lyric Opera of Chicago for the world premier of Jose “Pepe” Martinez’s El Pasado Nunca Se Termina in which he created the role of Enrique, and to the Castleton Festival as Mercutio in Gounod's Roméo et Juilliette under Maestro Rafael Payare.
Recently Mr. La Rosa made his Boston Symphony Orchestra debut at the Tanglewood Festival as Maximilian in Leonard Bernstein’s Candide conducted by Maestro Bramwell Tovey. The role with which he’d previously made his Los Angeles Philharmonic debut.
His 2013/14 season included debuts at the Los Angeles Opera in their presentation of Francesca Zambello’s production of Billy Budd under the baton of Music Director James Conlon and in the role of Falke in Die Fledermaus with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City under Maestro Holmquist and directed by Tomer Zvulun.
Highlights of the 2012/13 season include a Cleveland Orchestra debut in a program of Copland’s Old American Songs led by David Alan Miller both in Cleveland and as a part of the Orchestra’s Miami Residency at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, a return to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Jud Fry in Oklahoma! and a role debut as Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West at the Castleton Festival and with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia under Maestro Lorin Maazel.
From 2009-2012 Mr. La Rosa was a member of the Ryan Opera Center at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, where, during the 2011/12 season, he appeared as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte and Hermann in Les contes d’Hoffmann. During his time in Chicago he was also noted for his portrayals of Morales in Carmen conducted by Alain Altinoglu, Kuligin in Káta Kabanová conducted by Markus Stenz, and Cascada in The Merry Widow conducted by Emmanuel Villaume.
Also in 2012 Mr. La Rosa returned to the Chicago Opera Theatre as Boris in Shostakovich’s Moscow, Cheryomushki and debuted at Central City Opera as Jud Fry in Oklahoma!
For his debut with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Mr. La Rosa performed the roles of Rambo/Officer in John Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer directed by James Robinson and conducted by Michael Christie. In a return engagement with the Castleton Festival, the artist reprised the role of Don Quijote in de Falla’s El retablo de maese Pedro and bowed as the Armchair in L’enfant et les sortilèges, both under the baton of Maestro Maazel before travelling with him to Rome as the baritone soloist in Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem with the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana.
As a member of the Juilliard Opera Center Mr. La Rosa appeared as the boxer Ochsenschwanz in Krenek’s Schwergewicht oder die Ehre der Nation under James Conlon, as Ford in Verdi’s Falstaff in a production by Stephen Wadsworth conducted by Keri-Lynn Wilson, as Rambo in Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer under the baton of the composer, and as Raimbaud in Rossini’s Le Comte Ory. He has been heard in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia at the Castleton Festival under Maestro Maazel, in Handel’s Giulio Cesare at Glimmerglass Opera, and as Dandini in Rossini’s La cenerentola during a summer residency with the San Francisco Opera Merola Program. He has also performed with Steven Blier under the auspices of the New York Festival of Song.
Mr. La Rosa has an MM and AD from The Juilliard School and a BA from Williams College where he double majored in Philosophy and English.