American tenor and Pittsburgh native, Raymond Very, debuted at the Pittsburgh Opera in 1991 and has since gone on to perform leading roles at some on some of the world’s leading opera stages. He received a BBA from the University of Notre Dame and worked for Mellon Bank and Fisher Scientific before switching careers when he was accepted into the Houston Grand Opera Studio. Currently, he is a student of Dr. Shirley Barasch. He sings an extensive and varied repertoire that ranges from Mozart to contemporary composers, but he has been particularly in demand for his portrayal of leading roles in twentieth- century operas.
In the U.S. he has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, San Diego Opera, Seattle Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Washington National Opera, New York City Opera, Tulsa Opera, Opera Omaha, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Portland Opera, Washington Summer Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, and Pittsburgh Opera Theater.
Internationally, he has bowed at the Royal Opera Covent Garden in London, Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, Maggio Musicale in Florence, the Salzburg Festival, Theater an der Wien in Vienna, Norwegian Opera in Oslo, Oper Frankfurt, and Bilbao Opera in Spain. Among his roles are the title characters in Tales of Hoffmann, The Rake’s Progress, The Student Prince, and Damnation of Faust. Other roles include Don Jose in Carmen, Lensky in Eugene Onegin, Des Grieux in Manon, Rodolfo in La Boheme, Alfredo in La Traviata, Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto, Tamino in The Magic Flute, Matteo in Arabella, Boris in Katya Kabnova, Jenik in The Bartered Bride, Male Chorus in The Rape of Lucretia, Alwa in Lulu, Andres in Wozzeck, Don Juan in Flammen, Cassio in Otello, and Christian in Cyrano de Bergerac.
He has appeared in concert with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony, the Houston Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony, the National Chamber Orchestra, Utah Symphony, the Aspen Music Festival, Amsterdam VARA Radio Orchestra, the Vienna Radio Orches- tra, and the Pittsburgh Symphony.
He can be heard on recordings of Tiefland (Oehms Classics) conducted by Bertrand de Billy, Harvey Milk (Teldec Records) conducted by Donald Runnicles, Resurrection (Albany Records) conducted by Patrick Summers, Dracula Diaries (Catalyst Records) and Song of Majnun (Delos International) conducted by Ward Holmquist. Mr. Very currently resides in Pittsburgh with his wife, soprano Laura Knoop Very and their children, Isabella, and Benjamin, and his eldest daughter, Kaitlin.