Aaron St. Clair Nicholson
Aaron St. Clair Nicholson has established himself as an artist of the first rank, winning praise for his superb vocal gifts and the dramatic integrity he brings to his performances. The San Francisco Chronicle exclaimed “…as Ford, baritone Aaron St. Clair Nicholson gave a virtuosic display of vigorous full-throated singing and all out physical comedy.” Up next, Aaron performs Escamillo in Carmen with Opera Coeur D’Alene, Pirate King in Pirates of Penzance with Vancouver Opera and the Count in Le nozze di Figaro with Virginia Opera.
Aaron made his Metropolitan Opera debut as Schaunard in La bohème conducted by Placido Domingo, and has since performed there as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, as well as covered the roles of Clyde Griffeths in Tobias Picker’s An American Tragedy and Chou en Lai in Nixon in China. Throughout his career, Aaron has garnered much praise for his portrayals as opera’s most well-known characters, which include countless performances as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, which he sang with Florida Grand Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, L’Opéra de Montréal, Calgary Opera, and Opera Ontario; the title role in Don Giovanni with L’Opéra de Montréal, New York City Opera, and Opera Lyra Ottawa; and Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro with Vancouver Opera and Florida Grand Opera.
Having become a house favorite at Florida Grand Opera, Aaron has returned several times to the esteemed company for performances of Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Frederic in Lakmé, Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette, and in performances of David DiChiera and Bernard Uzan’s opera, Cyrano de Bergerac.
Other recent and notable credits include Valentin in Faust, Marcello in La bohème, and the world premiere of Lillian Alling with Vancouver Opera; Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Tarquinius in The Rape of Lucretia and Harlekin in Ariadne auf Naxos with L’Opéra de Montréal; Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette with Opera Lyra Ottawa and Calgary Opera; Ping in Turandot with Opera Lyra Ottawa and L’Opéra de Montréal; Pirate King in Pirates of Penzance with Edmonton Opera; Athanaël in Thaïs and Escamillo in Carmen with Pacific Opera Victoria; and Charlie in Estacio’s Filumena at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.
Aaron’s vast symphonic resume includes performances of the Fauré Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Britten’s War Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and several works by Vaughan Williams, with such organizations as the Atlanta Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, San Francisco Opera Center, Edmonton Symphony, Orchestra London, Brott Summer Music Festival, Festival Lanaudiere in Québec, Vancouver Bach Choir, Binghamton Symphony, Victoria Symphony, Bellevue Philharmonic, Rochester Philharmonic, as well as various orchestras in Grand Rapids, Calgary and Ventura, California. Other works in his repertoire include Brahms’ Vier ernste Gesänge, Copland’s Old American Songs, and Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen.
As an alumnus of the Glimmerglass Opera’s Young Artist Program, Nicholson starred as Lt. Lukash in their productions of The Good Soldier Schweik and as Sonora in La Fanciulla del West. The Abbotsford, British Columbia native was also a member of San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera Program and Seattle Opera’s young artist program. The George London competition finalist has also earned awards such as the Richmond F. Gold Career Grant, the Karl Muller Performance Award from Seattle Opera, and the Sullivan Foundation Award for role preparation assistance.