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Liam Bonner

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Liam Bonner

Opera Singer

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Central Catholic High School, Carnegie Mellon University, Manhattan School of Music

Gene Kelly Award for Best Actor

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Liam Bonner (born March 18, 1981) is a professional opera singer (baritone) based in Houston, Texas. As of 2013 he has appeared with such opera companies as The Metropolitan Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Washington National Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Opera Philadelphia, Minnesota Opera and the English National Opera in London, UK as well as the Wexford Festival Opera in Wexford, Ireland. He won third place in the First International Pavel Lisitsian Baritone Competition in Moscow, Russia, and awards in the Lotte Lenya Competition, and the Houston Grand Opera's Eleanor McCollum Competition.


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Bonner attended Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, PA, where he grew up. He achieved a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) from Carnegie Mellon University, and a Master of Music from the Manhattan School of Music. He is also an alumnus of the Houston Grand Opera Studio as well as San Francisco Opera's Merola Program and a former Studio and Apprentice Artist at Central City Opera.

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Bonner is the recipient of a Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation and was a semi-finalist in The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He has won awards from The George London Foundation and the Houston Grand Opera’s Eleanor McCollum Competition.

Performance career

In the 2010-2011 season Bonner sang Pelléas in Pelléas and Mélisande with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and covered the same role with The Metropolitan Opera, and that of Raimbaud in Le Comte Ory. He played Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles with The New Orleans Opera and Ned Keene in Peter Grimes with the Houston Grand Opera.

In the 2009-2010 season, Bonner made his Washington National Opera debut in the title role of Hamlet under the baton of Plácido Domingo and returned to the Houston Grand Opera as Belcore in L'elisir d'amore.

Bonner's Metropolitan Opera debut was playing Morales in Carmen in 2010, and later, Horatio in Hamlet which was one of the Metropolitan Opera's HD broadcasts that season.

In 2010, Bonner sang his first performances of Malatesta in Don Pasquale with Opera New Jersey and as Yesterday’s Beloved in Kurt Weill’s Royal Palace with the Bard Music Festival

As a special alumnus guest artist with The Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic, Bonner made his Carnegie Hall debut, singing Gustav Mahler's Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen. His European opera debut was as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte with The English National Opera.

Bonner is a recurring cast member at Houston Grand Opera, where he has performed roles including:

  • Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • Count in Le nozze di Figaro
  • Redburn in Billy Budd
  • The baritone soloist in Christopher Theofanidis’ The Refuge (a recording of which is available commercially on the Albany Records label)
  • Harašta in The Cunning Little Vixen
  • Silvano in Un ballo in maschera
  • Hortensius in La fille du regiment
  • The Witch in Basil Twist’s production of Hänsel und Gretel
  • Morales in Carmen
  • Dancaïro in Carmen
  • In 2007 Bonner joined The Wolf Trap Opera as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte. and again in 2008 as II Cavaliere di Befiore in Verdi’s Un giorno di Regno. He has also appeared with The Berkshire Opera as the Count in Le nozze di Figaro, The Aspen Opera Theatre as Sid in Albert Herring, and with L'Opéra de Québec for its annual opera concert and gala.

    As a soloist, Bonner has performed with the Houston Ballet in Stravinsky's Les Noces and Orff's Carmina Burana at Carnegie Mellon University. In addition, he sang selections from Mozart’s operas with the Pittsburgh Symphony and, with the Czech Republic’s Filharmonie Hradec Králové, a concert of popular opera pieces.


    Liam Bonner Wikipedia