Derek Welton
Bass-baritone

“Derek Welton’s physically imposing, vocally booming Uncle Bonze… clearly has major star potential.” (Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times)

Contacts

Shirley Thomson +44 (0)20 3725 9173
Christopher Lawson +44 (0)20 3725 9108

Biography

Considered by many as a major Wagnerian voice of the future, native Australian Derek Welton made his first foray into this repertoire as Donner (Das Rheingold) under Richard Farnes for Opera North followed by a debut at Osterfestspiele Salzburg as Gralsritter (Parsifal) under Christian Thielemann (released on DVD by Deutsche Grammophon). He has subsequently appeared as Klingsor (Parsifal) at the Beijing Music Festival under Gustav Kuhn, as Heerrufer (Lohengrin) at Semperoper Dresden, again with Christian Thielemann, and this season makes his role debut as Wotan (Das Rheingold) with Deutsche Oper Berlin, conducted by Donald Runnicles.

Considered by many as a major Wagnerian voice of the future, native Australian Derek Welton made his first foray into this repertoire as Donner (Das Rheingold) under Richard Farnes for Opera North followed by a debut at Osterfestspiele Salzburg as Gralsritter (Parsifal) under Christian Thielemann (released on DVD by Deutsche Grammophon). He has subsequently appeared as Klingsor (Parsifal) at the Beijing Music Festival under Gustav Kuhn, as Heerrufer (Lohengrin) at Semperoper Dresden, again with Christian Thielemann, and this season makes his role debut as Wotan (Das Rheingold) with Deutsche Oper Berlin, conducted by Donald Runnicles.

Welton has made several important house-debuts including Semperoper Dresden as Graf Dominik (Arabella), Opéra de Lille as Harašta (The Cunning Little Vixen), Festspielhaus Baden-Baden in a new production of Faust under Thomas Hengelbrock, and Staatsoper Hamburg as Voland in Der Meister und Margarita under Marcus Bosch. He made his role debut as Escamillo (Carmen) for Staatsoper Hamburg where he also created the role of Regolo in the world premiere of Beat Furrer’s La bianca notte under Simone Young, and he returned to Osterfestspiele Salzburg as Graf Dominik (Arabella).

An accomplished and diverse concert artist, this season Welton performs The Creation with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Mozart’s Requiem with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra, The Epic of Gilgamesh with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra under Jiří Bělohlávek, and A Child of Our Time with the Gewandhausorchester under Stefan Asbury.

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Contacts

Shirley Thomson +44 (0)20 3725 9173
Christopher Lawson +44 (0)20 3725 9108

Reviews

“Derek Welton gave the murderous St Bris appropriately lugubrious tones.” (Opera Magazine, February 2017)

“Similarly impressive, the Australian baritone Derek Welton in the role of Saint-Bris, absorbed in the ecstasy of his barbarism” (Opernwelt, January 2016)

“Derek Welton provides contrast with his broad bass-baritone as a dark Comte de Saint-Bris.” (Die Presse, November 2016)

“Derek Welton gave the murderous St Bris appropriately lugubrious tones.” (Opera Magazine, February 2017)

“Similarly impressive, the Australian baritone Derek Welton in the role of Saint-Bris, absorbed in the ecstasy of his barbarism” (Opernwelt, January 2016)

“Derek Welton provides contrast with his broad bass-baritone as a dark Comte de Saint-Bris.” (Die Presse, November 2016)

“Derek Welton sang a beautiful-sounding Heerrufer…[and] was on par with the rest of the star cast.” (Der Neue Merker, May 2016)

“Derek Welton’s Heerrufer demonstrated impressive stage and vocal presence across the three acts, with intelligently declaimed text and a certain ease across his vocal range.” (Altamusica, May 2016)

“Derek Welton was a convincing Heerrufer with an attractive Heldenbaritone timbre and striking declamations.” (Opernnetz, May 2016)

“Derek Welton was an impressive complement to the cast as Heerrufer and impressed with a deep understanding of the text and a beautiful timbre.” (Online Musik Magazin, May 2016)

“Deutsche Oper Berlin came up with a very good ensemble performance: Derek Welton as passionately potent, big-voiced Jaroslav Prus and also vocally a genuine opponent of Marty.” (Opernglas, April 2016)

“Derek Welton shone as the devil (in the form of the mysterious Voland) with supreme ease, demonic acting and a rich baritone.” (Der Spiegel, September 2013)

“Derek Welton as Voland was outstanding: A magical Mephistophelian schemer with a dark, grounded bass.” (Weser Kurier, September 2013)

“As Figaro, Derek Welton showed he is the possessor of a major voice—a bass-baritone of easy power and robust, pleasing timbre.” (Hugo Shirley, Opera, January 2013)

“Derek Welton, whose manly, oaken baritone is sensitively offset by Iain Burnside’s superbly supportive accompaniments. The twelve apostles and The truth sent from above are particular highlights of this disc, but every track has something to offer. Highly recommended” ***** (BBC Music Magazine, December 2011)

“Welton is an excellent singer, his vibrant baritone perfect for the swaggering nature of some of the songs, while he can scale down tenderly for others” (International Record Review, December 2011)

“When Welton thundered ‘I will shake the heavens and the earth’, he did pretty much that: every aria he sang had an easy, unforced majesty.”  (The Independent, December 2010)

“As Eurydice’s father Creon, smoky toned bass-baritone Derek Welton sang with alluring warmth and resounding power.” (The Australian, December 2010)

Discography

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