ROD GILFRY: blond, brawny, bel canto baritone




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an opera star Los Angeles can call its very own
At the LA OPERA       NEW OPERA    BALANCING ACTS      FAMILY        CALENDAR        DISCOGRAPHY


A remarkable career co-ascendant with the LA OPERA...

ROD GILFRY and BILLY BUDD: "a perfect fit"

Can someone born and raised in "LA-LA Land" really break into the world of OPERA? 

You betcha!  And there is no better proof than one of today's most sought-after baritones, ROD GILFRY, with whom FanFaire caught up following one of his acclaimed performances (as Count Danilo in Lehar's The Merry Widow) at the LA Opera in the 2007 season.

As he tells it in this video interview, it all began with a comprimario one-liner between him and celebrity tenor PLACIDO DOMINGO as Otello.  To be sure, it was no ordinary exchange, having taken place at a most auspicious and exciting time - the inaugural opening of the LA Opera in October 1986.  But the talented young opera singer, then already gearing up for the fast track to an international career, also could only have made a very good first impression.  His regular appearances at the LA Opera since then, while at the same time building a presence in Europe, set off his career on a trajectory that paralleled the remarkable ascendancy of LA Opera as a top-tier, world-class company.

Thus, if there is one singer of renown who can truly call LA Opera his artistic home, it is Rod Gilfry. It is there where he has performed some of the roles that he has made his own, foremost among which is BENJAMIN BRITEN's iconic BILLY BUDD, a character in whom he found a "perfect fit" to his persona and about which he talks at length in this video interview, among his other signature roles.

In January 2008, GILFRY takes his act a few miles south of LA to Orange County. On January 8 at 8 pm he sings, with Alan Smith at the piano, an eclectic program of songs that will surely regale the audience and bring to fore his exceptional vocal and dramatic abilities. The show takes place at the IRVINE BARCLAY THEATRE under the auspices of the PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY OF ORANGE COUNTY. Then from January 23-February2, he performs the role of Papageno in OPERA PACIFIC's production of Mozart's "The Magic Flute" at the ORANGE COUNTY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER.

        Credit: - images courtesy of and with permission of Rod Gilfry, LA Opera and San Francisco Opera.

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