From: Rancho Cucamonga, California. LA Opera: Herald in Otello (1986, debut). As of his closing performance as Eurydice's Father in Eurydice (2020), he has appeared in 168 performances of 32 roles, including the title roles of Billy Budd (2000), The Barber of Seville (1991, 1997) and Don Giovanni (1994). He will return in 2022 in The Brightness of Light.
Rod Gilfry is a two-time Grammy nominee, singer and actor who has performed in all the world's music capitals and appears on over 30 recordings. He is acclaimed worldwide in opera, musicals, recitals and cabaret. His 75-role repertoire includes 13 leading roles he has created in new operas. Recent performances include LA Opera productions of David Lang's solo opera the loser and Matthew Aucoin's Crossing, and Jake Heggie's It's a Wonderful Life at the San Francisco Opera. He recently created the role of Claudius in Brett Dean's Hamlet at the Glyndebourne and Adelaide Festivals, a role he reprised in the 2021/22 season at the Metropolitan Opera.
Other appearances for the season include the Marquis de la Force in Houston Grand Opera’s Dialogues of the Carmelites and Robert McNamara in the world premiere of Huang Ruo and David Henry Hwang’s The Rift at the Washington National Opera.
In 2019, he began a tour of Kevin Puts’ The Brightness of Light with Renée Fleming at the Tanglewood Festival, which was later performed with the National Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Dallas Symphony Orchestra and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Future performances of The Brightness of Light are scheduled for the Aspen Festival, Lyric Opera of Chicago and Oregon Symphony.
Future seasons will find Mr. Gilfry singing Alfonso in Così fan tutte with the Dallas Opera, Scarpia in the Houston Grand Opera’s Tosca, Claudius in Dean’s Hamlet and Bartolo in The Marriage of Figaro at Munich’s Bavarian State Opera.
He earned advanced degrees from California State University Fullerton and the University of Southern California. From 1987 to 1989 he was a member of the Frankfurt Opera ensemble, and from 1989 to 1994 he was a member of the Zurich Opera ensemble. He is in his 14th year as a professor of vocal arts at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, but will retire from that position in December 2022 to make more time for performing.