Artist of the Week: Armando Contreras

Mexican American Baritone Sings World Premiere of ‘The Knock’

By Francisco Salazar
(Credit: Philip Grosbong)

This week the Cincinnati Opera is set to present the world premiere staging of the opera “The Knock.” The opera explores what must be endured by the loved ones of those who serve. Based on years of interviews with real spouses of American soldiers, this new opera tells dramatic stories of heroism that often go unheard, tragedies that go far beyond the conflict. For this staging, the company will bring together a cast of diverse singers including baritone Armando Contreras.

Contreras was a part of the world premiere video recording of the opera which was recorded at the Glimmerglass Festival. Now he will reprise the lead role of Lt. Roberto Gonzales in the opera’s first staging. Additionally, the production will mark the baritone’s Cincinnati Opera debut.

The rising star has been praised for his “easy caramel syrup of his voice” and received the Top Prize after completing the Central City Young Artist Program, being named a finalist in the 2020 Kyrenia Opera Vocal Competition, and participating in the 2019 Dorothy Lincoln Smith Voice Competition where he was the Regional Winner. Over the years he has performed Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Central City Opera, Opera Steamboat, Salt Marsh Opera, and Central City Opera, among others. 


For more on “The Knock” here is Contreras singing in the world premiere film.


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