Acclaimed for his "darkly lustrous voice" (South Florida Classical Review), Calvin Griffin, of Columbus Ohio, just finished an exciting 2021-2022 season. Mr. Griffin made his debut with The Metropolitan Opera as well as Lyric Opera of Chicago in the role of Adult Robert in Fire Shut Up in My Bones. He also made his debut with the Spoleto Festival USA as Colline in La bohème, and returned to Opera Columbus as Tommy McIntyre in Fellow Travelers. Other recent engagements this past season include returning to The Metropolitan Opera to cover the Leader of the King’s Guards in Medea, and Doctor Grenvil in La traviata. Upcoming in 2023, Mr. Griffin will return to the Metropolitan Opera to cover the lead role of Young Emile Griffith in Champion.
Prior to the past season, Mr. Griffin made his debut at Florentine Opera as Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro, covered Lesbo in Agrippina with The Metropolitan Opera, returned to Atlanta Opera to sing Der Lautsprecher in Der Kaiser Von Atlantis and El Dancaïro in Carmen, debuted at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as Teacher 2/Grandma/Father in On the Edge, and returned to Wolf Trap Opera to sing Death in Sāvitri. Mr. Griffin also recently returned to the Florida Grand Opera to sing the title role in Le nozze di Figaro, sang Eddie in Minnesota Opera's production of The Fix, debuted as a Filene Artist with Wolf Trap Opera, where he sang both Bartolo in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Gomez in L'heure espagnole, and covered the role of Zuniga in the Dallas Opera's production of Carmen. Other former engagements include Atlanta Opera as Mother in The Seven Deadly Sins as well as Morales in Carmen, Opera Birmingham as Escamillo in Carmen, Opera on the James as Leporello in Don Giovanni, Opera Orlando as Alidoro in La Cenerentola, and Arizona Opera as Dr. Bartolo in Il barbiere di Siviglia.
Mr. Griffin is an alumni of the Florida Grand Opera studio where he made his debut with the company stepping in as a cover to sing the role of Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen. In addition, he sang Zaretsky in Eugene Onegin, sang Victor in Before Night Falls, and Samuel in Un ballo in maschera with the company. While in the Arizona Opera Studio, he performed the roles of the Captain in Florencia en el Amazonas, Zuniga in Carmen, Pistola in Falstaff, Count Ceprano in Rigoletto, Zaretsky in Eugene Onegin, Speaker/2nd Armored Man in Die Zauberflöte, Hortensius in La fille du régiment, Colline in La bohème, and Dr. Grenville in La traviata. In 2016, he made his Opera Columbus debut as Colline in La bohème.
Mr. Griffin has participated in the Glimmerglass Festival where he sang Elviro in Xerxes, Undertaker in Porgy and Bess, Fabrizio and covered Gottardo in La gazza ladra, and covered the title role in Sweeney Todd. He spent two summers at Santa Fe Opera as an Apprentice Artist where his assignments included Count Ceprano in Rigoletto and Hortensius in La fille du régiment. Mr. Griffin sang the title role in Gianni Schicchi at the Aspen Music Festival, and he covered the role of Leporello in Don Giovanni as an Apprentice Artist at Des Moines Metro Opera. He was a Studio Artist at The Wolf Trap Opera Company, as well as a participant at the Brevard Music Festival.
In competition, Mr. Griffin won 1st Place in the 2017 Dorothy Lincoln Smith Voice Competition. He was the 2015 winner of the Igor Gorin Memorial Award, was awarded a Western Region Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Encouragement Award in 2014, 1st Place winner in the 2012 Tuesday Musical Club Competition in San Antonio, 1st Place winner in the 2011 Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and was awarded a Central Region Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Encouragement Award in 2010. He was also a winner in the Cincinnati College-Conservatory’s Corbett Competition and was awarded the Linda Candler Award at the Brevard Music Center.
Mr. Griffin received his Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance from Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music under the tutelage of Dr. Stephen King, and his Bachelor’s Degree from The Ohio State University.
© Kristin Hoebermann