A crossover artist of immense skill, Mark Delavan has proved himself a strong character actor on stages throughout the country. Most recently, Delavan starred as Phil Arkin in Milk and Honey with York Theatre Company, to critical acclaim. Of his performance, critics hailed his “rich, resonant voice,” with “impressively clear high notes.” Also a singer of “incisive vocal power and fierce theatrical acuity,” he is sought after throughout the United States and Europe for the most demanding roles in his operatic repertoire. He regularly appears in the title roles of Der fliegende Holländer, Falstaff, and Rigoletto, and as Iago in Otello, Scarpia in Tosca, Jochanaan in Salome, and Amonasro in Aida. This season, Delavan sings Scarpia in Tosca with Pittsburgh Opera, Jochannan in Salome with Florida Grand Opera, and Wotan in Das Rheingold with Arizona Opera and Samson et Delilah with North Carolina Opera.
In recent seasons, Mark Delavan sang Amonasro in Aida at the Metropolitan Opera and Jack Rance in La faniculla del West at Michigan Opera Theatre; returned to the Deutsche Oper Berlin as Jupiter in Die liebe der Danae and Alfio/Tonio in the double-bill of Cavalleria rusticana/Pagliacci; returned to Pittsburgh Opera in the title role of Nabucco and débuted as Jochanaan in Salome at Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova under Fabio Luisi; sang Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West at Santa Fe Opera; returned to San Francisco Opera and the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Scarpia; created the role of Giovanni in the world première of Marco Tutino’s Two Women (La Ciociara) at San Francisco Opera; and was heard in Kurt Weill’s The Road of Promise with the Collegiate Chorale at Carnegie Hall and with the New York Choral Society in Mendelssohn’s St. Paul.
Additionally, Mr. Delavan took his interpretation of Wotan to the Deutsche Oper Berlin after successful performances at the Metropolitan Opera under Fabio Luisi in cycles of Der Ring des Nibelungen. He was seen as Don Carlo in La forza del destino at Washington National Opera, as well as the Dutchman with Arizona Opera and the Four Villains in Les contes d’Hoffmann at Palm Beach Opera. Other highlights include performances of Gianciotto in Zandonai’s Francesca da Rimini at the Metropolitan Opera, the title role in Rigoletto for Pittsburgh Opera, Scarpia in Tosca for San Francisco Opera, the Dutchman in Der fliegende Holländer at the Princeton Music Festival, and Amonasro in Aida at the Ravinia Festival with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under James Conlon.
Mr. Delavan was heard as Wotan for Deutsche Oper Berlin, in performances of Das Rheingold and Siegfried with Donald Runnicles. He was heard as Scarpia in performances for the Canadian Opera Company and Pittsburgh Opera, and returned to Santa Fe Opera as Mandryka in a new production of Arabella. Mr. Delavan expanded his repertoire, adding the roles of Jupiter in Die Liebe der Danae for Deutsche Oper Berlin, and Renato in Un ballo in Maschera for Lyric Opera of Chicago. He was also heard as Iago for Deutsche Oper Berlin and Opera Company of Philadelphia, Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West for Den Jyske Opera, Jochanaan for Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu, Falstaff for Pittsburgh Opera, Amonasro for Atlanta Opera, Wotan in Das Rheingold and Die Walküre, and as Scarpia, both with Deutsche Oper Berlin, as Jochanaan in concert for the Prague State Opera, and in his first performances as Wotan in Die Walküre for San Francisco Opera.
At the Metropolitan Opera, Mr. Delavan has earned public and critical acclaim for his company début as Amonasro in Aida. He has also sung the title roles of Simon Boccanegra and Nabucco, and has appeared as Scarpia, Tomsky in Pique Dame, Alfio in Cavalleria rusticana, Carlo in La forza del destino and as Gerard in a major revival of Andrea Chénier.
The press has praised Mark Delavan’s performances as Amfortas in Lyric Opera of Chicago’s new production of Parsifal, and his creation of the role of Snooks Brenner in the world première of William Bolcom’s A Wedding, directed by Robert Altman and conducted by Dennis Russell Davies. With Lyric Opera of Chicago, Mr. Delavan has appeared as Alfio/Tonio in Cavalleria rusticana/I pagliacci, and as as Germont in La traviata. He has also appeared in new productions by Robert Carsen of Gluck’s Iphigenie en Tauride (Louis Langrèe conducting) and by David McVicar of Verdi’s Il trovatore (Bruno Bartoletti conducting).
A popular performer with the New York City Opera, Mr. Delavan has sung in numerous productions with the company, including the title roles in Der fliegende Holländer, Rigoletto, Macbeth, and Falstaff, as well as starring in the title role of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd to great critical acclaim. Mr. Delavan’s NYCO credits also include the roles of the four villains in Les contes d’Hoffman, Scarpia (telecast live on PBS for ‘Live From Lincoln Center’), Ezio in Attila, Escamillo in Carmen, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, the Duke of Nottingham in Roberto Devereux and in new productions of The Ballad of Baby Doe as Horace Tabor, Il trittico as Michele and Gianni Schicchi, and Salome.
Born in Princeton, New Jersey, Mr. Delavan earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Oral Roberts University. He was a national finalist of the Metropolitan Opera auditions and an Adler Fellow with the San Francisco Opera.