Marc Embree
Equally at home in opera, oratorio, and musical theater, Marc Embree most recent engagements have included Blitch in Susannah at the Virginia Opera, followed by Friar Lawrence in Nashville Opera’s Romeo et Juliette, and in Schreker’s Der Ferne Klang at Avery Fischer Hall with the American Symphony Orchestra.  He was heard in the title role in Tartuff, as Frere Laurent in Roméo et Juliette in Honolulu, as Daland in Der fliegende Holländer in Edmonton.  He performed as the 4 Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann in Augusta, followed by Schumann’s Das Paradise und die Peri with the American Symphony Orchestra and by the role of Blitch in Floyd’s Susannah with the DiCapo Opera Theater in New York which The New York Times reported as Mr. Embree cut a magnificent figure as the preacher, at once charismatic and dissolute: a genuine tragic hero”. 

Mr. Embree was heard in Augusta in the Ballad of Baby Doe and continued the season in Peter Maxwell Davies’ The Lighthouse in Nashville, was Ben in Regina at the Bard Festival, returned to the Edmonton Opera for evenings of Kurt Weill, and was bass soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the National Orchestra of Mexico, under the baton of Enrique Arturo Diemecke.  Mr. Embree’s engagements included Timur in Turandot for Edmonton Opera and the Opera Company of North Carolina, a Gala Concert with the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra, The Messiah with the National Orchestra of Mexico, and Crespel in Les Contes d’Hoffmann and Ruder in The Student Prince for Central City Opera.

In recent seasons the bass has been heard as Wotan in Die Walküre at the Virginia Opera and appeared with the Colorado Springs Symphony and the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra with Maestro Lawrence Leighton-Smith in a complete performance of Händel’s Messiah. He was Fasolt in Das Rheingold in the first ever Ring Cycle in Mexico City, premiered a new opera, Rain, at Alice Tully Hall, performed in Carlos Chavez’ The Visitors for the Cervantino Festival and the Opera de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, Marc Blitzstein’s Regina (Horace) for Augusta Opera, Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, and Wozzeck (Doktor) in Mexico City.  Mr. Embree was Lt. Lukash in The Good Soldier Schweik at the Chicago Opera Theater, made his debut as Iago in Otello for Nashville Opera, was Orestes in Elektra for Virginia Opera, and portrayed the Four Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann with Connecticut Opera.

Mr. Embree made his European debut as Escamillo in Carmen with the Grand Théâtre du Nancy in France.  Most recently he gathered critical acclaim for his powerful performance of Frank Maurrant in Weill’s Street Scene (Zambello/Holmes) at the Theater im Pfaltzbau (Ludwigshafen) and the historic Theater des Westens (Berlin).  Taped for television, Street Scene has been broadcast in Europe, Japan, and on the BRAVO channel in the United States.  His commercial recording credits include Carlos Chavez’ The Visitors for the BMG label and The Good Soldier Schweik for Cedille Records.

Mr. Embree has appeared with leading opera companies and orchestras throughout the North America.  He made his New York City Opera debut in 1978 and continued with the company until 1983 in a variety of roles including the Forester in Cunning Little Vixen (Corsaro, Tilson Thomas/Bergeson), Colline in La bohème (Auerbach, Pallo/Mauceri/Holt), Kolanaty in The Makropoulos Affair (Corsaro, Mauceri), Masetto in Don Giovanni (Cox, Rudel), the Speaker in The Magic Flute (Rudel), and Comte Des Grieux in Manon as well as many others.  As the Forester in Vixen, the New York Times stated “He projected a believable combination of roughness, gentleness and awe, and his sturdy voice was a major asset.”  His most recent roles at New York City Opera have been Simon Fenton in Emmeline and the Notary in Intermezzo.

As a respected singing actor, Marc Embree has been active in American opera houses and theaters.  Appearances have included the opera companies of New Orleans, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Houston, Portland, Sarasota, Cleveland, Opera Carolina, Utah Opera, Opera Omaha, Kansas City Lyric and the Virginia Opera.  Included in his extensive repertoire are roles such as Conte d’Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni (title role), Scarpia in Tosca, Pizarro in Fidelio, Plunkett in Martha, and the Four Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, to name but a few.

In addition to the standard repertoire, Mr. Embree has been active in contemporary opera as well.  He created the role of William Emmons in the world premiere of The Village Singer by Stephen Paulus.  He was selected by Thomas Pasatieri for the New York premiere of his Washington Square for which Newsweek wrote: “Marc Embree as Dr. Sloper gave a terrific performance as a mountain of arrogance and cruelty”.  With the Spoleto-USA festival Mr. Embree performed the role of the Chief of Police in The Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District, and with the Lake George Opera Festival and the Chattanooga Opera the role of Olin Blitch in Susannah.

Marc Embree has received awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council, the Sullivan Foundation, and in 1983 was named a Distinguished Alumnus from Westmar College.  He frequently appears in concert and recital with his wife, mezzosoprano, Jane Bunnell.

August 2010 - Please destroy any previously released version

Marc Embree

“That husband, Frank, makes Baron Scarpia look like a character out of Chekhov, but baritone Marc Embree bit into
the role and shook it, and he sang with pungent fervor.”

   – Opera News