- Lecturer of Voice
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Bass-Baritone, ROBERT CANTRELL has been described by the Baltimore Sun as "a deeply expressive, rich, plangent Bass-Baritone," and the Washington Post critic, Joseph McLellan wrote that Cantrell "has a warm supple voice that brought out the lyrical intentions of the composers making them treasured moments."
Cantrell is often praised for his rich, powerful sound and lyrical musical interpretations delivering an engaging dynamic performance with great vocal control and sensitivity. He is one of the most sought after bass-baritones in the Baltimore-Washington area who has performed throughout the United States, Italy, Austria, France and Japan. His 2016-2017 performance appearances included Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (debut), guest artist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (debut), a solo recital on the Community Concerts at Second Presbyterian Church recital series, Mother's Lament (premiere) at Morgan State University by James Lee, Mozart Requiem with the Bay Atlantic Symphony, Brahms Requiem with the Baltimore School for the Arts at Shriver Hall, leading role cover of Emile Griffith in Terrence Blanchard's Champion with Washington National Opera, Champion Preview performance at the Washington National Cathedral, Music on the Corner Recital Series at First Baptist Church in Winchester, VA., solo recital at Atholon Seventh Day Adventist, a solo recital at Music at Grace Recital Series, Music by Copland with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass at Church of the Redeemer, Vaughan Williams' Dona Nobis Pacem with the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, and the role of Bluebeard in Bela Bartok's Bluebeard's Castle with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra.
Recent performance highlights include Kapilow's The Polar Express with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem with the U.S. Naval Academy, Arias by Verdi, Mozart and Gounod with the Prince George's Philharmonic, a solo recital of African American Art Songs and Spirituals at Gettysburg College, and The Music of Gershwin on the Roth Concert Series at the Church of the Annunciation in Washington, DC.
Other notable career highlights include his Washington National Opera debut in the role of the Moorish Envoy in Massenet's Le Cid starring legendary tenor, Placido Domingo on PBS, Gubetta in Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia opposite Renee Fleming, the First Nazarene in Strauss' Salome with Deborah Voight, his Carnegie Hall debut in the Mozart Requiem, Bass soloist on the Baltimore Choral Arts France Tour in the Mozart Requiem, his debut in Italy at the Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi in Handel's Semele as the Priest and Somnus, role of the Jailer in Puccini's Tosca on Washington National Opera's Japan Tour, Gershwin's Porgy and Bess at the Bregenz Festspielhaus in Austria and appearances with the Metropolitan Opera Chorus in New York.
On the concert stage, Cantrell has sung Mendelssohn's Elijah, the Verdi Requiem, Beethoven's Ninth and Choral Fantasy, Handel's Messiah and Israel in Egypt, Menotti's Death of the Bishop of Brindisi, Duruflé Requiem, Fauré Requiem, Vaughan Williams Five Mystical Songs, Copland's Old American Songs, and Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass. He has also appeared numerous times at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's Fourth of July Spectacular, and the Reading Symphony Orchestra's 4th of July Star Spangled Spectacular where the Reading Eagle wrote, "Extraordinary Bass-Baritone Robert Cantrell's sumptuous voice, endless breath control and moving delivery swept everyone away."
In addition, Cantrell has performed with the Baltimore Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Opera Delaware, Sarasota Opera, Opera Vivente, Municipal Opera of Baltimore, Washington Summer Opera and Opera Ebony. He has appeared as soloist with the Prince George's Philharmonic, Concert Artists of Baltimore, Reading Symphony Orchestra, Loudon Symphony, York Symphony, Columbia Pro Cantare, Deer Creek Chorale, Central Maryland Chorale, Easton Choral Arts, Baltimore Masterworks Chorale, Mid-Atlantic Symphony, and the Handel Choir of Baltimore.