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Musical World

Ryan McKinny

  • Bass-Baritone


Ryan McKinny began the 2009 – 2010 season at Houston Grand Opera as the Herald in 'Lohengrin' conducted by Patrick Summers. He was then heard at Los Angeles Opera in two new roles: Leone in Handel’s 'Tamerlano' with Plácido Domingo and Don Basilio in 'Il barbiere di Siviglia'. In the spring of 2010, Mr. McKinny made his European operatic debut at the Deutsche Oper Berlin as Escamillo in 'Carmen', as well as Hercules in Peter Konwitschny’s new production of 'Alceste' for Oper Leipzig. He also performed the bass-baritone roles in 'Oedipus Rex' for his debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Michael Tilson Thomas and with the Sydney Festival in Sydney, Australia under the direction of Peter Sellars. Mr. McKinny was also heard in a special recital of Schubert’s 'Die Winterreise' during the Sydney Festival, which was broadcast on ABC, Australia’s public radio.

Recently, Ryan McKinny sang the roles of Creon, Tiresias, and the Messenger in Stravinsky’s 'Oedipus Rex' with Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Los Angeles Philharmonic in his final concerts as Music Director and staged by Peter Sellars. He also made his debut with Utah Symphony & Opera as Figaro in 'Le nozze di Figaro' and returned to the Aspen Music Festival for a recital recreated on a program originally performed by Jerome Hines in June 1949. Mr. McKinny was recently heard at Houston Grand Opera as Don Pedro in 'Béatrice et Bénédict' and Theseus in 'A Midsummer Night's Dream'.

Previous seasons have included performances of Sam in 'Un ballo in maschera' and Flint in 'Billy Budd' at Houston Grand Opera, as well as Montano in 'Otello' and Ein Bedentier in Ullmann’s 'Der zerbrochene Krug', both under the baton of James Conlon for his debut with Los Angeles Opera. He was seen at Wolf Trap Opera as Barone di Kelbar in Verdi’s early opera 'Un giorno di regno' and Figaro in 'Le nozze di Figaro' with Berkshire Opera. In concert, he was heard as bass-baritone soloist in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the National Symphony Orchestra and Zuniga in a concert performance of 'Carmen' with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl.

An alumnus of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, Mr. McKinny has performed a number of roles on the mainstage at HGO, including Figaro in 'Le nozze di Figaro', Ramfis in 'Aida', Peter in 'Hänsel und Gretel', Masetto in 'Don Giovanni', Zuniga in 'Carmen', and Pietro in 'Simon Boccanegra'. In November 2006, he sang the role of Der Tod in Ullmann’s 'Der Kaiser von Atlantis' conducted by Maestro Conlon with the Jewish Community Center of Houston (in partnership with Houston Grand Opera). He also previously sang this role with Maestro Conlon at Chicago’s Ravinia Festival and at the Spoleto Festival in Italy. In the summer of 2006, Mr. McKinny sang Le Gouverneur in Rossini’s 'Le comte Ory' and Figaro in 'Le nozze di Figaro' at Wolf Trap Opera.

Mr. McKinny made his Carnegie Hall debut in December 2004 in Handel’s 'Messiah' with the Musica Sacra Orchestra. At the Aspen Music Festival in 2007, he sang his first performance of 'Winterreise' accompanied on the piano by Richard Bado. He has also been heard as soloist in the Mozart, Brahms, and Fauré Requiems as well as Vaughan Williams’s 'Dona nobis pacem'. Additionally, he sang the world premiere of Henrik Strindberg’s 'I Thought Someone Came By' at New York’s Alice Tully Hall in 2004.

Mr. McKinny was recently the first recipient of the Birgit Nilsson Prize for singing Wagner at Plácido Domingo’s Operalia Competition held at Teatro alla Scala in Milan. He also represented the United States in the 2007 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, where he was a finalist in the Rosenblatt Recital Song Prize. He was a Grand Finalist in the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and was featured in the film The Audition recently released by Decca on DVD.