Performance Bio


Opera & Concert Tenor ~ Administrator ~ Voice Teacher & Coach

CLASSICAL SINGER “2008 Teacher of the Year”

WILLIAM NEILL made his professional operatic debut in Essen, Germany in 1968 and was engaged to perform regularly for more than 35 years with opera companies and symphony orchestras the world over – i.e. San Francisco Opera, New York City Opera, Metropolitan Opera, Opera Company of Greater Miami, Opera Company of Boston, Opera Society of Washington DC, San Diego Opera, Canadian Opera Company (Toronto), Scottish National Opera, Dublin Grand Opera, L’Opéra National de Paris Palais Garnier, L’Opéra Bastille, Théatre Royal de la Monnaie Brussels, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Bühnen der Stadt Essen, Oper der Stadt Bonn, De Nederlandse Operastichting, L’Orchestre National de France (Paris), Boston Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cleveland Symphony, as well as in Siena, Barcelona, Madrid, Mexico City, Caracas and Montevideo.

At the beginning of his career, Bill sang lyric roles such as Tamino, Faust, Hoffmann, Alfredo, Pinkerton and Cavaradossi – subsequently making a successful transition to Jugendlich Heldentenor (Dramatico Spinto Tenor) repertoire and consistently winning accolades for his “technical mastery, compelling artistry and intense characterization” in his portrayals of such demanding roles as Lohengrin, Siegmund, Florestan, Max, Herodes, Don José, Samson, Otello, Canio, Laca, Tichon, Peter Grimes and Oedipus Rex.  With more than 100 roles to his credit, Lenny in Carlisle Floyd’s Of Mice and Men became somewhat of a signature role for him.

He considers himself immensely fortunate to have worked alongside a great many of the world’s most illustrious singers, conductors, stage directors and composers. An extremely versatile artist, equally comfortable in standard German, French, Italian and English repertoire, he also performed a variety of roles in Czech, Russian and Polish. The roles he performed ranged widely and adventurously throughout his career, spanning a broad spectrum of musical styles, including not only L’Incoronazione di Poppea and Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria by Monteverdi but also a significant number of contemporary works, many of which were either American or world premieres. Bill was also an accomplished concert and oratorio soloist, frequently called upon to perform Mahler’s Das Lied Von Der Erde, Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen and Das Klagende Lied, the Verdi Requiem, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and Christus Am Ölberge and Händel’s Messiah, Judas Maccabeus and Samson. He recorded for Nonesuch on the Elektra Asylum label, as well as for the American Public Broadcasting System, Canadian Broadcasting Company, RAI, Radio France, and all of the Deutscher Rundfunk and Netherlands Broadcasting Companies.


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