AZO Cast Members & Creatives
Bass-Baritone Ryan Kuster gained vast attention on the west coast for his accolades in San Francisco, where he recently completed a two-year residency and over 80 performances with the prestigious Adler Fellowship at San Francisco Opera. His performance as Escamillo in their production of Carmen was called “pure bravado.” The Classical Voice said of his performance as Masetto in Don Giovanni, “Handsome Ryan Kuster sang beautifully, and acted so convincingly that it was hard to believe he’s an Adler Fellow.”
This season, North State Symphony will feature Mr. Kuster in a concert with orchestra of his signature repertoire. He will then sing the title role in Don Giovanni at Opera Memphis, Escamillo in Carmen at Opera Grand Rapids and Knoxville Opera, Angelotti in Toscawith Orlando Philharmonic, Alidoro in La Cenerentola at Opera Saratoga, and makes a triumphant return to Dallas Opera in late 2015.
In recent seasons, Kuster made his symphonic début with the Los Angeles Philharmonic singing the role of Masetto in their highly acclaimed production of Don Giovanni, directed by Christopher Alden, with costumes by Rodarte, and led by Mo. Dudamel. He then returned to Wolf Trap Opera to début the title role of Don Giovanni and made his National Symphony début performing Beethoven’sNinth Symphony. Additionally, Ryan sang Alidoro in Nashville Opera’s production of La Cenerentola; sang Masetto in Don Giovanniwith Cincinnati Opera; appeared in Dallas Opera’s production of Turandot; performed Angelotti in Tosca with Madison Opera and Pacific Symphony; Colline in La bohème with Arizona Opera; Escamillo in Carmen with both Opera Colorado (company début) and Virginia Opera; and two roles at Bard SummerScape Opera: Lysiart in Weber’s seldom performed Euryanthe and Brutamonte in Schubert’s hidden gem Fierrabras.
Previous engagements also include Rambaldo in La rondine with Oberlin in Italy; Pantalone in Le donne curiose with Wolf Trap Opera Company; Samin Trouble in Tahiti with Opera Santa Barbara; covering Samuel Ramey in the title role of Bluebeard’s Castle at the Chicago Opera Theater; The Parson, Badger and Woodpecker in The Cunning Little Vixen, Doctor Grenvil in La traviata and Carl Olsen in Street Scene with Chautauqua Opera; Count Ceprano in Rigoletto and Betto in both Gianni Schicchi and Ching’s Buoso’s Ghost with Opera New Jersey; and Ferrando in Il trovatore, Snug in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Frère Laurent in Roméo et Juliette at Opera North.
On the concert stage, Mr. Kuster performed the bass solos in the Fauré Requiem with the Bucks County Symphony, the MozartRequiem with the Neumann College Choir, the bass solos in the Messiah with the Tindley Temple Choir, the title role of Händel’s oratorio Saul with the Marsh Chapel Choir and Collegium, andAdam in Haydn’s The Creation with the Boston University Symphonic Chorus. He also appeared as a featured soloist with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, Ocean City Pops, New Jersey Master Chorale, and Concert Operetta Theater of Philadelphia.
Mr. Kuster recently sang on the Metropolitan Opera stage as a National Council Semi-Finalist. He received a 3rd place prize in the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition and received a Grant from the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition. He also was given the Encouragement Award in the Philadelphia region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the Harmon Award from Chautauqua Opera.
His strong relationship with San Francisco Opera began when he joined the Merola Program, where he appeared as Garibaldo inRodelinda, Don Bartolo in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Dr. Cajus in Die Lustigen Weiber von Windsor in the Schwabacher Scenes Program. Mr. Kuster earned an Artist Diploma at the Academy of Vocal Arts where he performed the roles of the Governor in the world première of Margaret Garwood’s The Scarlet Letter, Schaunard in La bohème, Enrico in Anna Bolena, Oroveso in Norma, the title role in Don Pasquale, Doctor Grenvil in La traviata, Dikoj in Kát’a Kabanová, and Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte.
Mr. Kuster also holds a Master of Music degree from Boston University where he performed the roles of A Man with a Cornet Case in Argento’s Postcard from Morocco, Benoit in La bohème, Garrido in Massenet’s La Navarraise, and Amantio DiNicolao in Gianni Schicchi. Mr. Kuster earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Westminster Choir College.