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Gordon Hawkins

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Asst Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 0405
Biography

Gordon Hawkins is critically acclaimed throughout the world for his in-depth interpretations and lush baritone voice. A dramatic baritone with an international reputation as a “Rigoletto specialist,” Mr. Hawkins has delighted audiences as the tragic Verdi underdog in more than 170 performances. He is now earning critical acclaim as a Wagner specialist: “Alberich was superbly realized by baritone Gordon Hawkins, in his [Los Angeles Opera] début. Despite wearing a grotesque puppet head and clunky boots that hobbled his movements, Hawkins delivered a sterling vocal characterization of the power-mad Nibelung.” (Opera News). He has been engaged as Alberich in Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen at esteemed international companies including: San Francisco Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Washington National Opera, Seattle Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Teatro de la Maestranza de Sevilla, and the BBC Orchestra at Royal Albert Hall in London.

This season, he is performing the title role in Vancouver Opera’s production of Rigoletto, Porgy in Porgy and Bess in Concert at Toledo Opera, Scarpia in Tosca with the Cincinnati Opera, a recital entitled War and Remembrance at The Clarice Center for the Performing Arts, and Alberich in The Ring Cycle at Washington National Opera.  In recent seasons, he performed the title role in Nabucco with Seattle Opera and Opera Carolina, sang Alvaro in Daniel Catán’s contemporary Spanish-language opera Florencia en el Amazonas at Los Angeles Opera, appeared as Scarpia in Tosca at Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Amonasro in Aïda with St. Louis Symphony, and reprised the role of Porgy in Porgy and Bess for Jacksonville Symphony and Festspillene i Bergen in Norway.

Mr. Hawkins’ career is shaped by performances of opera’s most popular baritone roles at leading companies around the world. Recent career highlights include Rigoletto with such companies as Washington National Opera, Arizona Opera, and Opera Colorado; Thoas in Iphigénie en Tauride at The Metropolitan Opera; Alfio in Cavalleria Rusticana with the Washington National Opera; Telramund in Lohengrin at the Deutsche Oper Berlin; Caspar in Der Freischütz at Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville; Amonasro in Aïda with Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, and The Atlanta Symphony; Tonio in Pagliacci at Seattle Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Manitoba Opera, and Atlanta Opera; Scarpia in Tosca at Vancouver Opera and Arizona Opera; Renato in Un ballo in maschera with Opéra de Montréal and New Orleans Opera; the title role in Verdi’s Macbeth and Count di Luna in Il trovatore with Seattle Opera; and the Villains in Les contes d’Hoffmann at New National Theatre Tokyo.

One of his signature roles, Porgy in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess has brought him to the most esteemed companies in the U.S. including most recently; the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Seattle Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Dallas Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Colorado Symphony, and San Francisco Symphony.

In concert, Mr. Hawkins’ recently sang a Gala Concert for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg in Washington DC. Additional engagements include Vaughan Williams’ A Sea Symphony with The Washington Chorus at the Kennedy Center; the world première of Jake Heggie’s A Great Hope Fell with the Eos Orchestra of New York; Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with The Atlanta Symphony and St. Louis Symphony; concert selections from American musicals with Welle WDR 4 in Cologne, Germany; and additional repertoire with the Chicago Symphony, National Symphony, the Baltimore Symphony, The Cincinnati Orchestra, National Theatre Orchestra of Prague, and Vienna Symphony. This season, he sings a recital of songs entitled War and Remembrance at The Clarice Center for the Performing Arts.

Mr. Hawkins has been heard on the Live BBC Radio broadcast as Alberich in Götterdämmerung with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, and Live from the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts earlier in his career as Marcello in La bohème with Plácido Domingo and Mirella Freni, and Silvano in Un ballo in maschera with Luciano Pavarotti and Aprile Millo. He can be heard as George Milton on the first recording of Carlisle Floyd’s Of Mice and Men with the Houston Grand Opera on Albany Records, and on the New Zealand International Festival of the Arts’ recording of Simon Boccanegra in the title role.

Mr. Hawkins was a winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the Luciano Pavarotti International Vocal Competition, and was awarded the Washington National Opera’s “Artist of the Year” award.

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