Raymond Aceto, bass
American bass Raymond Aceto has established an important presence among the world's leading opera companies and symphony orchestras. His performances continue to gather both popular and critical acclaim. Of his performance as Baron Scarpia, The Houston Chronicle hailed, "Raymond Aceto oozes suave villainy as the evil Baron Scarpia, his voice a dark rumble of menace and lust as he plots to destroy Cavaradossi and conquer Tosca… intelligent characterization distinguishes Aceto's Scarpia as more than a cartoon villain. Commanding in voice and presence, implacable in his lust for Tosca, he is nonetheless subtle in his calculations. It's his smiling ease that confirms how dangerous he is."
Mr. Aceto’s 2012-2013 season highlights include a return to the Metropolitan Opera as Il Commendatore in Don Giovanni and a debut with Pittsburgh Opera as Sparafucile in Rigoletto. He will also appear as Sarastro in The Magic Flute with Opera North Carolina, and Jean Procida in Le Vespre Sicilienne with Oper Frankfurt. Symphonic appearances include the Verdi Requiem with the Colorado Symphony and Symphony No. 8 in E-flat Major, “Symphony of a Thousand”, with the Nashville Symphony.
Mr. Aceto begins the 2011-2012 season with returns to San Francisco Opera as Timur in Turandot and Lyric Opera of Chicago as Varlam in Boris Godunov and Ramfis in Aida. He will also be seen as Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte with Dallas Opera and Scarpia in Tosca and the Archbishop in King Arthur for his return to the Santa Fe Opera. Highlights of Mr. Aceto’s concert appearances include performances of Verdi’s Requiem with Cleveland Orchestra and Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Aceto is well-known at leading opera houses around the world. He has appeared frequently with the Metropolitan Opera, most recently as Zaccaria in Nabucco, the King of Egypt in Aida, and the Commendatore in Don Giovanni and Sparafucile. His debut with Lyric Opera of Chicago was as the High Priest in Nabucco, and he has since appeared with that company as Banquo in Macbeth, Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Fafner in Das Rheingold and Siegfried, the Old Hebrew in Samson et Dalila, Nourabad in Les pêcheurs de perles, Alaska Wolf Joe in Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, Ramfis in Aida and Comte des Grieux in Massenet’s Manon. Mr. Aceto made his debut with San Francisco Opera as Monterone in Rigoletto and later returned as Banquo and the King in Aida. He regularly appears with Houston Grand Opera, including performances as Scarpia in Tosca, Fiesco in Simone Boccanegra, Sparafucile, Raimondo, Pimen in Boris Godunov, Seneca in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Escamillo, Sarastro in Zauberflöte, and as Mozart’s Commendatore. He has appeared frequently with Dallas Opera in roles including Leporello in Don Giovanni, Basilio, Raimondo, Monterone, Colline in La bohème, Fafner and Fasolt, and most recently as Walter in Luisa Miller. His first performances of Rocco in Fidelio were with the Canadian Opera Company, and he returned there for performances in the world premiere of Randolph Peter's The Golden Ass and as Daland in Der fliegende Holländer. He reprised the role of Sparafucile for his debuts with L'Opéra de Montréal and the Santa Fe Opera. Mr. Aceto has also appeared in leading roles with the opera companies of Seattle, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Boston, Colorado, and Cleveland as well as the opera festivals in St. Louis and Spoleto (USA).
Raymond Aceto made his debut at Royal Opera, Covent Garden as Don Basilio in a new production of Il barbiere di Siviglia conducted by Mark Elder, and he was quickly re-engaged for performances as Sparafucile and as Ferrando in Elijah Moshinksy’s production of Il Trovatore. Mr. Aceto made his debut with Madrid’s Teatro Real in the role of Ferrando, and audiences at the Vienna Staatsoper first saw him as Ramfis. The role of Ramfis was the vehicle for his debut both at the Deutsche Oper Berlin and Arena di Verona. He returned to the Deutsche Oper for performances as Fiesco and to Verona for performances as Escamillo which were recorded and released on DVD by TDK. The role of Escamillo also took him to Palermo’s Teatro Massimo. Raymond Aceto’s European debut was in performances as Monterone with the Netherlands Opera, and his debut at Brussels' Théâtre de la Monnaie was as Loredano in a new production of Verdi's I due Foscari. Recent European engagements include a return to the Deutsche Oper Berlin in the 2008/09 season when Mr Aceto sang Escamillo in a new production of Carmen and Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor.
Raymond Aceto is also in demand as a concert artist. He appeared with the Cleveland Orchestra in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and as Mephistopheles in Faust, both led by its music director Franz Welser-Möst, the San Francisco Symphony in Mahler's Eighth Symphony led by Michael Tilson Thomas, and he returned for performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Stravinsky's Pulcinella and Ravel's L'enfant et les sortileges. His debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra was in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, a work in which Mr. Aceto has also appeared in Toronto, at the Hollywood Bowl, and with the Minnesota Orchestra. Mr. Aceto has also appeared with the Minnesota Orchestra in the role of Rocco. He first appeared with the Cleveland Orchestra in a performance of Beethoven's Mass in C Major led by Leonard Slatkin, and he returned for performances of Verdi’s Messa di Requiem. He also performed the role of Zuniga in Carmen in concert with both the Cleveland Orchestra and the St. Louis Symphony, and he appeared in Salome at Tanglewood with the Boston Symphony and Seiji Ozawa. His first performances of Méphistophélès in La Damnation de Faust were with the Dallas Symphony, and he returned for performances of Verdi’s Messa di Requiem. He first performed the title role in Boito's Mefistofele with Boston's Chorus Pro Musica, and in 1996 he was the featured bass soloist with the Festival International de Lanaudière for a televised performance of scenes from Faust, Mefistofele and La damnation de Faust. He made his Alice Tully Hall debut in a concert performance of Balthazar La Favorite with L'Opéra Français de New York, and his Carnegie Hall debut as Andrea Cornaro in Caterina Cornaro with the Opera Orchestra of New York.
A graduate of the Metropolitan Opera's Young Artist's Development Program, the Ohio-born bass has appeared frequently with the company since his debut as the Jailer in Tosca during the 1992-1993 season. In 1995 and 1996 Mr. Aceto was awarded Richard Tucker Foundation Career Grants, and in 1994 he was a recipient of a Sullivan Foundation Award. In 1996 he traveled to Japan for performances and a recording of The Rake's Progress, Seiji Ozawa conducting. Mr. Aceto can also be heard in the role of Capellio in Teldec's recording of I Capuleti e i Montecchi.