Whether performing in opera or recitals or on the world’s concert platforms, baritone James Westman’s passion and musicianship bring an extra dimension to his performances. He recently appeared as Germont in Verdi’s La traviata at English National Opera, which marked both his debut with the company and the work’s 100th professional performance. In 2012 he created the leading role of Sandy Keith in Bramwell Tovey’s new opera The Inventor. He has appeared in the principal opera houses of North America and Europe including Houston Grand Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Opéra de Montréal, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Vancouver Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, New York City Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Dallas Opera, Canadian Opera Company, Wexford Festival (Ireland), Utah Opera, and Oper der Stadt Koln.
An alumnus of the San Francisco Opera’s Adler program, Mr. Westman’s roles at San Francisco Opera include Guglielmo in Mozart’s Così tan tutte, Marcello in Puccini’s La bohème, Sylvio in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, Renato in Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera, and Sid in Britten’s Albert Herring. His recent highlights include the roles of Ford in Verdi’s Falstaff for Calgary Opera, and Sharpless in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly for Opera Lyra Ottawa, and singing Orff’s Carmina burana with the Toronto and Vancouver Symphony Orchestras. Nominated for two Grammy awards and three Canadian Juno awards, he has recorded for Opera Rara, CBC, and BBC, as well as the recent released Decca recording of Britten’s War Requiem with Seiji Ozawa.
James Westman was the first boy treble ever to perform the fourth movement of Mahler’s Symphony No. 4, and toured in the work with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Austria, Poland, Czechoslovakia, East and West Germany, and Russia, performing in Musikverein and Carnegie Hall at age 12. His honors include winning the George London Competition and receiving the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation and Marilyn Horne Foundation awards.