Praised for the distinctive warmth of his voice, clear diction, and exceptional musicianship, American baritone Keith Harris is captivating audiences in his performances on both operatic and concert stages. This season, Mr. Harris performs the role of Miller in Better Gods Concert with Little Opera Theater of NY, performs as a soloist in Handel’s Messiah with Helena Symphony, Schaunard in La bohéme with Opera Carolina and Toledo Opera, sings at a fundraising event with Annapolis Opera, Carmina Burana with Pacific Northwest Ballet, and joins The Metropolitan Opera for their production of Werther. Last season, he reprised the role of Albert in Werther for his début with The Israeli Opera and performed the role of Marcello in La Boheme with Opera Tampa. He also performed Carmina Burana with the Kirkland Choral Society and in concert with the Bel Canto Festival.
Highlights of his North American engagements include productions of The Merry Widow, Faust, Werther, and Lulu with The Metropolitan Opera; the role of Valentin in Faust with Toledo Opera and Annapolis Opera; the creation of the role of Sir Plume in the world première of The Rape of the Lock at New York Opera Fest; Silvio in Pagliacci with Opera Tampa; Albert in Werther with Mobile Opera; and the roles of Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro and Dandini in La Cenerentola with Bar Harbor Music Festival, where he subsequently returned for a Tea Concert and pops concert for their 50th Anniversary.
He has appeared with the Seattle Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Holders Festival in Barbados, Nevada Opera, Opera of East Texas, El Paso Opera, and Skagit Opera. Noted roles in Mr. Harris’ repertoire also include Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, and Athanaël in Thaïs. No stranger to musical theatre, Mr. Harris performed as Billy Bigelow in Carousel, Anthony Hope in Sweeney Todd, Pirate Bras Pique in Naughty Marietta, and The Music Man with Baltimore Actors’ Theatre. Internationally, he performed the role of Journalist in Lulu at Teatro Comunale di Bologna and often performs many roles with The Festival lyrique international de Belle-Île en Mer in France, including Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, Iago in Otello, Ford in Falstaff, and, most recently, Tonio in Pagliacci.
A seasoned concert artist, Mr. Harris has performed with numerous esteemed symphonies throughout North America. Since his debut at Carnegie Hall for the world premiere of David N. Child’s Requiem, Mr. Harris repeatedly finds himself on the stage of the esteemed venue for performances of great works such as Hayes’s Te Deum, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Rutter’s Mass of the Children. With New Jersey Choral Society, he sang Fauré’s Reqiuem, and with both New Jersey Choral Society and Connecticut Choral Society he sang Haydn’s Heiligmesse and Ed Lojeski’s Psalms of Passover. Other highlights of his concert career include the roles of Morales and Le Dancaïre in Carmen with Pacific Symphony; the baritone solo in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with New Haven Symphony, Lancaster Symphony, and National Chorale at Avery Fisher Hall; Karsa’s Brudibar with Phoenix Symphony; Händel’s Messiah with East Texas Symphony Orchestra; Gerald Finzi’s In Terra Pax with Dessoff Choirs under the baton of James Bagwell; Argento’s Andrée Expedition with Emerson Series in Wisconsin with pianist Kenneth Bozeman; Carmina Burana with Savannah Philharmonic, Lancaster Symphony, Riverside Choral Society at Alice Tully Hall, and National Chorale at Lincoln Center; Stephen Paulus’ So Hallow’d Is the Time with Greenwich Choral Society; and the world première of Morning Has Broken arranged by Bob Chilcott.
A vocal competition winner, his numerous honors and awards include first prize in the Seattle Region Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, “Young Artist of the Year” with Opera Longview Vocal Competition in Texas, the Ellen Faull Gordon Northwest Vocal Competition, and the Ladies Musical Club Competition in Seattle. He holds a Master of Music degree in Voice Performance from the University of Washington and a Bachelor of Music degree in Voice Performance from Lawrence University in Wisconsin.