Bass-baritone Derek Welton is a graduate of the University of Melbourne, Australia, holding a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in German and Linguistics, and of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, holding Master of Music (Vocal Studies) and Master of Music Performance (Opera Studies) degrees with Distinction.

Derek has performed at the Bayreuth Festival, Salzburg Festival, Salzburg Easter Festival, Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Semperoper Dresden, Hamburg State Opera, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Glyndebourne, Opera North, Beijing Music Festival, Opéra de Lille and many other houses in over forty roles including Pangloss/Martin in Candide, Mr Flint in Billy Budd, Escamillo in Carmen, Voland in York Höller’s Der Meister und Margarita, Peter Besenbinder in Hänsel und Gretel, Forester in The Cunning Little Vixen, Prus in The Makropulos Case, Saint-Bris in Les Huguenots, Mozart’s Figaro, Count Almaviva, Don Giovanni, Guglielmo, Papageno and Speaker, Salieri’s Falstaff, Altair in Die ägyptische Helena, Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress, Herald in Lohengrin, Wotan in Das Rheingold and Klingsor in Parsifal. Derek’s competition wins include the Emmerich Smola Förderpreis, the Handel Singing Competition and the Australian Youth Aria.

A sought-after concert artist, Derek has performed at venues across Europe, North America, Asia and Australasia in over sixty choral and orchestral works as well as a diverse range of song repertoire. Conductors with whom Derek has worked include Ivor Bolton, Richard Bonynge, James Conlon, Christian Curnyn, Richard Egarr, Richard Farnes, Hartmut Haenchen, Pablo Heras-Casado, Thomas Hengelbrock, Axel Kober, Stephen Layton, Kent Nagano, Donald Runnicles, Stefan Soltesz, Leonard Slatkin, Christian Thielemann and Simone Young.

Derek has been a member of the Ensemble of the Deutsche Oper Berlin since the 2015/16 season. His roles there for the 2017/2018 season will include The King of Clubs in The Love for Three Oranges under Nicholas Carter, Zacharie in Le Prophète under Enrique Mazzola and Der Pförtner in Das Wunder der Heliane under Marc Albrecht. He will also appear at the 2017 Salzburg Festival as the Duke of Albany in Reimann’s Lear under Franz Welser-Möst and will make his début at the 2017 Bayreuth Festival as Klingsor under Hartmut Haenchen.

Concerts for the 2017/18 season include The Dream of Gerontius with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and Jephtha in the Chortage Hannover.

Derek features on four recordings: a solo CD of Vaughan Williams with Iain Burnside for Albion Records, as Creonte on Pinchgut Live’s CD of Haydn’s L’anima del filosofo, and as Gralsritter on Deutsche Grammophon’s Parsifal, Graf Dominik on Unitel Classica’s Arabella, and Herald on Deutsche Grammophon’ Lohengrin, all with Christian Thielemann. Further releases for the season will include Beethoven’s Symphony No 9 for Telarc and the title role of Martinů’s The Epic of Gilgamesh for Supraphon.

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Harrison Parrott - biography Derek Welton