Rising tenor Derrek Stark, is quickly establishing a reputation as an elegant performer of nuanced, stylish singing. His impressive command of technique and coloratura, as well as a youthful and ardent stage presence, perfectly embody the romantic heroes he portrays. A 2018 Sullivan Foundation Grant Winner, he has been hailed by Opera News for his “handsome sound,” and described as “the real thing” by www.artsjournal.com, and “a showstopper” by indianapublicmedia.org.
In 2019, Mr. Stark will make his international debut as the Italian Tenor at Opernhaus Zürich in Der Rosenkavalier, and will take the stage at Palm Beach Opera as Alfredo in La traviata. Recent engagements include, Giasone in Medea in Corinto with Teatro Nuovo- where he “deftly portrayed the ancient hero with no shortage of nuance” (OperaWire); Harry in La fanciulla del West with Santa Fe Opera; and El Remendado in Carmen with Lyric Opera Kansas City. He also gave a “striking” performance of Rodolfo in La bohème with San Antonio Opera (mysanantonio.com) — a signature role that he has performed with Miami Lyric Opera, Indiana University Opera Theatre, and Opera Experience Southeast.
A previous member of the Benenson Young Artist Program at Palm Beach Opera, he was heard on stage as The Governor in Candide, while also covering the title role. Mr. Stark is an alumnus of several other prestigious Young Artists Programs including, Bel Canto at Caramoor; the Lyric Opera of Kansas City – where he made his company debut as the Huntsman (Rusalka); and the Santa Fe Opera – where he was awarded the Campbell/Wacther Scholarship for outstanding apprentice artist and covered Flamand (Capriccio) and the First Jew (Salome). Other significant covers include, Gualtiero (Il pirata) with Bel Canto at Caramoor; and Frederic (The Pirates of Penzance), Duke (Rigoletto), and Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly) with Palm Beach Opera.
He has also performed Alfredo (La traviata), Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi), Peter Quint (The Turn of the Screw), Tamino (Die Zauberflöte) and Fenton (Falstaff). He was also a winner of the 2015 Bel Canto Foundation Vocal Scholarship.
Mr. Stark has appeared in concert with the Atlantic Classical Orchestra, the Boise Philharmonic, and the Orchestra of Saint Luke’s in repertoire ranging from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, to Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle. This summer he will join the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra in performances of Carmina Burana. An accomplished recitalist, he has been praised for his “bright mature tenor” and cultivated artistry (Palm Beach Arts Paper).
Mr. Stark is a native of Bath, and holds a B.M. from Mansfield University, PA, and a M.M. from The Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University, IN where he studied with renowned soprano Carol Vaness.