Matthew Polenzani
Matthew Polenzani
Matthew Polenzani
Photo © Dan Rest
Title role, Werther, Lyric Opera of Chicago

The beauty of his sound, the musicality of his legato, the suppleness of his phrasing, the clarity of his French diction, the ringing ease of his high notes – all served a finely realized portrayal. [Werther]
Chicago Tribune


Matthew Polenzani
Photo © Cory Weaver
Title role, The Tales of Hoffmann, San Francisco Opera, with Angela Brower as Nicklausse

“Tenor Matthew Polenzani threw himself into the title role [Hoffmann] with a wondrous combination of vocal clarity and demonic theatrical energy.”
San Francisco Classical Voice


“Occasionally singing with beautifully soft, honeyed tone, but mostly with all out romantic lyricism, he remains strong and rapturous throughout the opera. All in all, Polenzani’s is a stupendous portrayal [of Hoffmann].”
San Francisco Chronicle


“... his voice was warm and tender, his musicianship impeccable, his diction clear and conversational ... Mr. Polenzani’s rhapsodic singing was by turns declamatory, fervent and mysterious.”
The New York Times


“His tenor ... open and warm,
flexible and capable of both heroic
top notes and hushed reverie.”
Chicago Sun-Times


“Mr. Polenzani has a ringing, clarion lyric tenor that
he can push to heroic heights ...” — New York Sun

BIOGRAPHY

Matthew Polenzani
Photo © Dario Acosta

One of the most gifted and distinguished lyric tenors of his generation, Matthew Polenzani has been praised for the artistic versatility and fresh lyricism that he brings to concert and operatic appearances on leading international stages.

Mr. Polenzani’s 14/15 season opens with his return to the Royal Opera House in London for Idomeneo, followed by productions of Les contes dHoffmann, led by James Levine at the Metropolitan in New York. He will Nemorino and Tamino in LElisir dAmore and Die Zauberflöte at Bayerische Staatsoper along with his debut at the Opernhaus Zurich, in La Traviata. On the concert platform, he appears in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Chicago Symphony conducted by Riccardo Muti, he sings the Verdi Requiem at La Scala, under the baton of Riccardo Chailly, and sings a New Year’s concert with Maria Agresta at Teatro La Fenice, Venezia, conducted by Daniel Harding. He will also tour the States for a series of Recitals with pianist Julius Drake, with whom he will also perform in Recital at London’s Wigmore Hall, and will sing Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin accompanied by pianist Ken Noda with Parlance Chamber Concerts.

The 13/14 season saw Mr. Polenzani’s return to the Metropolitan Opera in Mozart’s Cosìfan tutte, and in Verdi’s Rigoletto. He was Massenet’s Des Grieux in Laurent Pelly’s production of Manon at the Royal Opera Covent Garden, and he was Tito in David McVicar’s production of La Clemenza di Tito at Lyric Opera of Chicago. The tenor made his debut at the Deutsche Oper Berlin as Berlioz’s Faust, and then returned to the Bayerische Staatsoper for I Capuleti e i Montecchi.

Among the many highlights from recent Metropolitan Opera seasons are the premieres of Bartlett Sher’s production of Lelisir damore, which opened the 2012 season, and David McVicar’s production of Maria Stuarda (issued on DVD by Erato), Willy Decker’s production of La traviata, Julie Taymor’s legendary Die Zauberflöte (DVD available from the Metropolitan Opera), Jürgen Flimm’s production of Salome  and revivals of Don Pasquale (issued on DVD by Deutsche Grammophon), Don Giovanni, Roméo et Juliette, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Cosìfan tutte, Falstaff, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (DVD also available from Deutsche Grammophon)and LItaliana in Algeri. To date, he has sung over 300 performances at the Met, many conducted by his musical mentor James Levine. In other American theaters, appearances include Werther, Les Contes dHoffmann, La traviata, Roméo et Juliette and Die Entführung aus dem Serail with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Les Contes dHoffmann, Die Entführung and Il barbiere di Siviglia for San Francisco Opera, and Die Zauberflöte with James Conlon at Los Angeles Opera.

Following Matthew Polenzani’s debut as Gérald in Delibes Lakméwith Opera Bordeaux in France in 1998, appearances in other major European theatres include productions of Don Pasquale and La traviata at the Teatro Comunale in Florence, the Aix en Provence Festival (DVD available on Bel Air Classiques) and on a tour of Japan with Turin’s Teatro Regio; I Capuleti e I Montecchi at the Paris Opera; Lelisir damore at the Vienna State Opera, Bavarian State Opera, Naples’ Teatro San Carlo and Rome Opera; Cosìfan tutte at Covent Garden with Sir Colin Davis and in Paris with Philippe Jordan; Lucia di Lammermoor at Frankfurt Opera, the Paris Opera and Vienna State Opera; La Damnation de Faust in Frankfurt; Manon on a tour of Japan with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden under Antonio Pappano; Idomeneo in Turin with Gianandrea Noseda, Manon with Fabio Luisi and La traviata at La Scala; Rigoletto at the Vienna State Opera conducted by Jesus Lopez-Cobos, and at the Salzburg Festival in Don Giovanni  (DVD available on EuroArts).
Mr. Polenzani is in great demand for symphonic work for the world’s most influential conductors including Pierre Boulez, James Conlon, Sir Colin Davis, Riccardo Frizza, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Louis Langrée, James Levine, Jesús López-Cobos, Lorin Maazel, Riccardo Muti, Simon Rattle, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Leonard Slatkin, Sir Jeffrey Tate, Michael Tilson Thomas, Franz Welser-Möst and David Zinman, and with many major orchestras both in the United States and Europe, including the Berlin Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, Orchestra del Santa Cecilia, Orchestre National de France, Orchestra Giovanile “L. Cherubini” at the Salzburg Whitsun Festival and the Ensemble Orchestral de Paris at the Saint Denis Festival.

In recital Matthew Polenzani has appeared in recital with Julius Drake at Wigmore Hall (available on CD from the Wigmore Hall label), Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Celebrity Series Boston at Jordan Hall and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society; with noted pianist Richard Goode in a presentation of Janáček’s The Diary of One Who Vanished at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall, and in recital at the Verbier Festival with pianist Roger Vignoles (commercially available on CD on VAI). Mr. Polenzani was honored to have appeared on all three stages of Carnegie Hall in one season: in concert with the MET Chamber Ensemble at Zankel Hall; in solo recital with James Levine at the piano in Weill Hall; and in a Schubert Liederabend on the stage of Isaac Stern Auditorium with colleagues Renée Fleming, Anne Sofie Von Otter, and René Pape, again with James Levine as pianist.

Matthew Polenzani was the recipient of the 2004 Richard Tucker Award and Metropolitan Opera’s 2008 Beverly Sills Artist Award. An avid golfer, he makes his home in suburban New York with his wife, mezzo-soprano Rosa Maria Pascarella and their three sons.


Represented by:
Gianluca Macheda, Associate Director, IMG Artists: General Management

© Matthew Polenzani