Tenor Robert Breault enjoys an international career that features an extraordinary breadth of repertoire. His warm, flexible voice and superb artistic sensibilities combine to make him a consummate singing actor. Opera News noted, “Besides a ductile tenor that allows him to negotiate a full dynamic span, from silvery head tone to ringing forte, even within a single phrase, Breault offers truly superb diction.” Opera News also praised him for making “an excellent impression, his mellifluous tenor boasting clarity of both tone and diction; clearly reveling in high notes, he sang with notable dynamic variety.” Highlights of the tenor’s 2017-18 season include Verdi’s Requiem with the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, two world premiere performances: Steve Roens’ Three Existential Songs for the Intermezzo Chamber Society in Salt Lake City, and James Demars’ Four Songs. Both cycles were written expressly for the tenor and performed with Steinway Artist, Jeffrey Price. Robert will sing the role of Alfred in Die Fledermaus with Utah Opera as part of their 40th Anniversary season.
During the 2016-2017 season, Robert made his debut with the La Jolla Symphony in performances of Verdi’s Requiem and joined the Virginia Symphony for performances of Messiah. He performed Puccini’s Messa di Gloria with the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park on two occasions, once at the Festival and again for the Florida A.C.D.A. convention. He sang the world premiere of Leavitt’s A Christmas Carol in the role of Marley with the University of Utah Lyric Opera Ensemble at the Grand Theatre in Utah. Robert also performed Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Pacific Symphony and returned to the role of Cavaradossi in his debut with Opera Idaho. Robert also directed performances of La Rondine for the Utah Lyric Opera Ensemble and La Bohème in Italy for La Musica Lirica.
During the 2015-16 season he joined the Salt Lake Symphony in Haydn’s Creation, the Madeleine Cathedral Choir for Howells’ Hymnus Paradisi, the Sheboygan Symphony for Respighi’s Lauda per la Natività and made his debut as the Narrator in Ward’s The Snowman. Additional concert performances included Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park and the American Festival Chorus in Utah, and his debut with the South Dakota Symphony in Beethoven’s Mass in C. He also demonstrated his ringing high D flat with the Bach Festival Society in performances of Rossini’s Stabat Mater. Robert made his debut in the world of Musical Theatre stepping deftly in to the role of Horace Vandergelder in a University of Utah production of Hello Dolly. Robert’s April 2015 performance of Paul Moravec’s world premiere Music, Awake! will appear on an upcoming CD on the Naxos label. His debut as Bacchus in Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos with the Festival Opera Company was met with much critical acclaim in the Bay Area. One reviewer wrote: “The role of Bacchus is written for a Wagnerian heldentenor, and Robert Breault filled the bill magnificently, singing with great power and intensity. He reminded me vocally, if not in stature, of a young James King.” In June 2015, Robert performed the demanding role of Verdi’s Otello with Opera Fort Collins with a similar vigor and resonance. Robert’s stage direction of Poulenc’s “I dialoghi delle Carmelitane” was highly praised in Italy.
The 2014-2015 season for this dynamic tenor included the title role in Britten’s St. Nicolas with the Craig Jessop-led American Festival Chorus, a return to his alma mater, St. Norbert College for performances of Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Dudley Birder Chorale, and, his Gilbert and Sullivan debut as the defendant in Trial by Jury under the direction of Michael Barrett and Julie Wright-Costa. He returned to the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park for his 12th time in a performance of Bach’s B minor Mass and returned to the Buffalo Philharmonic under JoAnn Falletta in performances of Beethoven’s Symphony #9. Robert made his third appearance with Edmonton Opera to sing Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor and made his Memphis Symphony debut with Beethoven’s 9th. He joined the Salt Lake Symphony in Haydn’s Creation in May and made his debut as Bacchus in the Festival Opera production of Ariadne auf Naxos in July.
Robert’s 2013-2014 season included the role of Narraboth in Utah Opera’s production of Salome, as well as concert performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the San Diego Symphony, Santa Fe Symphony and Sheboygan Symphony, Rossini’s Stabat Mater with the Virginia Symphony, and Haydn’s Creation and Bach’s St. John Passion both with the Florida Bach Festival. He sang the title role in Britten’s St. Nicolas with the Madeleine Choir in Salt Lake City, Utah to great critical acclaim.
Breault’s 2012-2013 season included a return engagement with the Ulf Schirmer-led Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester in the world premiere of Gerd Kühr’s demanding Ordinarium Missae. He performed Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde as a late replacement with the Oregon Mozart Players. He performed Stravinsky’s Les Noces in Russian under JoAnn Falletta and the Virginia Arts Festival and returned to Utah Opera as “Tamino” in a highly acclaimed Die Zauberflöte.
Breault’s 2011-2012 season included performances with the San Diego Symphony in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 under the baton of John Nelson. Performances of the same work were made with the Salt Lake Symphony and Lyceum Philharmonic. He made two appearances with the Florida Bach Festival in a well-received Verdi Requiem and in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion. In July 2012, Breault made his 10th appearance with Chautauqua Opera as “Des Grieux” in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut. He made his debut with the Buffalo Philharmonic in Hayden’s Creation and returned to the National Philharmonic to perform Bach’s Magnificat. In August, Breault performed Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde (Schoenberg arrangement) with the Martingale Ensemble in Portland, which was released on MSR Classics in 2012.
During the 2010-2011 season, Breault joined the Edmonton Opera as “Cavaradossi” in Tosca, the Florida Bach Festival for performances of Bach’s St. John Passion, National Philharmonic for Berlioz’s Requiem, and returned to San Diego Symphony for Schubert’s Mass #6. In New York, he made his debut with the Korean Broadcast Symphony at The United Nations singing Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. He performed both “Shallow” and “Hal” (last minute replacement) in Getty’s Plump Jack with Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester. A CD of the performance was released on the Pentatone Label in 2012. In October, Breault made another unexpected debut with Opèra de Montreal when he flew, at 24-hours notice, to replace an ailing “Duke” in their production of Rigoletto.
During the 2009-2010 season, Breault joined the Edmonton Opera for the first time in the role of the Duke in Rigoletto. Opera Canada wrote, “Tenor Robert Breault made his EO (Edmonton Opera) debut with distinction as the Duke of Mantua. He looks the part of a man who can seduce women with more than just his power and wealth, and he has a lustrous voice.” Breault made appearances with the San Diego Symphony in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park for performances of Bach’s B Minor Mass and Mozart’s Requiem and in December of 2009 Breault returned to Phoenix for performances of James DeMars’ Guadalupe. In 2010, Breault joined the Utah Symphony under the baton of Andrew Litton in performances of Verdi’s Requiem, and made his debuts with the Dubuque Symphony (Mozart’s Requiem) and Albany (NY) Pro Musica & The Cathedral of All Saints Choir of Men and Boys in Handel’s Messiah. For Santa Fe Opera, Breault covered the title roles in Tales of Hoffman and the world premiere of Spratlan’s Life is a Dream.
In 2008-2009, Breault joined the Florentine Opera as “Jupiter” in Handel’s Semele and as “Cavaradossi” in Tosca with Opera Grand Rapids. On the concert stage, he performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Bernstein’s Mass with the Utah Symphony, Gluck’s Ezio in Paris and Vienna with Il Complesso Barocco, Verdi’s Requiem with the Santa Fe Symphony, Britten’s Les Illuminations with the Richmond Symphony, and Stravinsky’s Pulcinella with the New York City Opera at Alice Tully Hall. Breault was also active as a recitalist making appearances throughout the United States.
During the 2007-2008 season, Breault portrayed “Edgardo” in Lucia di Lammermoor with both Opera Arizona and Madison Opera, and “Grimoaldo” in Rodelinda with Portland Opera. His performances of “Pandarus” in Walton’s Troilus and Cressida for Opera Theatre of St. Louis received noted critical praise. Breault made his debut with the Detroit Symphony under Leonard Slatkin at Meadowbrook and sang Messiah with the Eugene Concert Chorale as well as Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Lied Center for the Performing Arts in Lincoln Nebraska, in addition to recitals in Florida and Utah. In May 2008, Breault recorded the role of “Juan Diego” in the world premiere of James DeMars’ Guadalupe, available on the Canyon Records label.
For the 2006-2007 season, Breault portrayed “Jupiter” and “Apollo” in a new production of Semele with New York City Opera for which he was honored with the company’s “Kolozsvar Award.” Breault also portrayed “Edgardo” in Lucia di Lammermoor with Utah Opera, “Sam” in Susannah with Arizona Opera, and the critically acclaimed title role of Werther with Chautauqua Opera. On the concert stage, he performed Elijah with the Jacksonville Symphony and with Bryn Terfel and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Messiah with the Omaha Symphony, Carmina Burana with the Pacific Symphony and the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, and Plump Jack with the Orquesta Sinfonica Sinaloa de las Artes in Mazatlan, Mexico.
During the 2005-2006 season, Breault debuted with the Arizona Opera as “Don Jose” in Carmen, a role he also sang for a return engagement with New York City Opera that same season. He sang “Alfredo” in La Traviata with the Ft. Worth Opera, the title role in Mozart’s Idomeneo with Opera Lafayette in Washington DC, and “Cavaradossi” in Tosca for his debut with Festival Opera. In concert, he appeared in Elijah for his debut with the San Diego Symphony, Handel’s Messiah with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Delaware Symphony, Puccini’s Messa di Gloria with the Santa Fe Symphony, and Bach’s Magnificat, and Mozart’s Requiem in a return engagement with the Florida Bach Festival.
Breault’s numerous engagements on the concert stage include Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Atlanta Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Florida Orchestra, Utah Symphony, and the Cleveland Orchestra, Plump Jack with the Puerto Rico Symphony and London Philharmonic Orchestra, and Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, B Minor Mass and Haydn’s Creation all with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He has performed Handel’s Messiah with numerous orchestras including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Jacksonville Symphony, University Musical Society (Ann Arbor), the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra under Nicolas McGegan, the Colorado Symphony, Edmonton Symphony, Eugene Concert Choir, and with the St. Louis Symphony. His performances of Verdi’s Requiem include appearances at the Elora Festival, Florida Philharmonic, and with the Tucson Symphony. He has been heard in Elijah with the Virginia Symphony, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, San Diego Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony, National Orchestra of Taiwan, and the Florida Orchestra. His appearances as the “roasted swan” in Orff’s Carmina Burana have thrilled audiences in performances with the Pacific Symphony, Utah Symphony, Elora Festival, California Symphony, Baltimore Choral Arts, Conspirare (TX) and the Houston Masterwork Chorus. He has sung Haydn’s Creation with the Winter Park Bach Festival, Virginia Symphony, and Eugene Concert Choir, Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins with the Utah Symphony and Opera, and Gounod’s Missa Solennelle with the Vancouver Bach Choir.
In constant demand on the concert stage, Breault has also performed with the Montreal Symphony, American Bach Soloists, the Oregon Bach Festival, Madison Symphony, Washington’s National Symphony, Lansing Symphony, L’Orchestre Métropolitan du Grand Montréal, the Hamilton Philharmonic, the Jerusalem Symphony, and the Toronto Symphony. Engagements at New York’s Carnegie Hall include the demanding role of “Argirio” in Rossini’s Tancredi with the Opera Orchestra of New York, as well as performances in Rossini’s Armida, Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde, Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Second Symphony, and Mozart’s Requiem. Of particular interest are his performances with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra under Nicholas McGegan for Handel’s Messiah, Hercules, and Solomon, and the role of Christ in Beethoven’s demanding Christus am Olberg. The San Francisco Chronicle called his performance, “a heroic Jesus, his clarion tenor registering with precision and emotional vigor.”
Breault’s recording credits include Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with the Martingale Ensemble, Gordon Getty’s Plump Jack with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester, Handel’s Messiah with The Cathedral Choir of Men and Boys (Albany), and James Demars world premiere recording of his Guadalupe opera. Robert has also appeared on Laurent Petitgirard’s world premier recording of Joseph Merrick dit Elephant Man with The Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo as well as a live DVD recording with Opéra de Nice. Breault has also recorded Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the Choeur St. Lawrence and Montreal Symphony, DeMars’ American Requiem with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Berlioz’s Requiem with the Jerusalem Symphony and Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and three volumes of Pachelbel’s Organ Works as the cantor with organist Marilyn Mason. His performance with the Utah Symphony and Mormon Tabernacle Choir of Vaughan Williams’ Hodie with Keith Lockhart was broadcast nationally on PBS.
Robert Breault has served as Professor of Music and Director of Opera at the University of Utah since 1992. He received his Masters and Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Michigan in 1987 and 1991. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from St. Norbert College in 1985. A native of Marinette, Wisconsin, Robert and his wife Julia live in Salt Lake City, the proud parents of 8 mini-dachshunds.