Countertenor JohnHoliday, winner of the 2017 Marian Anderson Vocal Award, one of BroadwayWorld’s “New York Opera 2015 Gifts that Keep on Giving” and nominee for“Newcomer of the Year” by the German magazine Opernwelt, has quicklyestablished himself as a fast-rising singer to watch. His voice has beenpraised as “a thing of astonishing beauty” (New Yorker), “arrestingly powerful, secure and dramaticallyhigh” (Wall Street Journal), “exceptional [and] strong...even in itshighest range” (The New York Times) and “timeless” (Washington Post).
Holiday’s 2018-19season comes off the heels of being chosen as one of Yerba Buena Center for theArts 100 honorees for 2018, in the company of individuals such as MadeleineAlbright, Glenn Close, and Janelle Monáe among others, and he will be afeatured performer at the YBCA 100 Summit in November. Holiday then brings hisBaroque expertise to a role debut as Nero in Agrippina with Ars Lyrica,Handel's Israel in Egypt with MasterVoices at Carnegie Hall, and makeshis debut with the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor as the Alto Soloistin Handel’s Messiah. His season continues with his debut at the NationalKaohsiung Center for the Arts in Taiwan, singing the role of the First MaleVoice in Huang Ruo’s engrossing chamber opera Paradise Interrupted, arole he created at the Spoleto Festival in 2016 for the world premiere.
This all comes freshoff of a busy and exciting 2017-18 season, having begun with his OperaPhiladelphia house debut singing the role of John Blue in the world premiere ofDaniel Roumain’s We Shall Not Be Moved. The production, directed by theaward-winning Bill T. Jones, premiered in Philadelphia before going to New YorkCity’s famed Apollo Theater in October 2017. As the winner of the 2017 MarianAnderson Award, Holiday gave a recital at the Kennedy Center in February 2018,marking his Kennedy Center debut. Holiday’s season continued with his Europeandebut in March 2018 for another performance of We Shall Not Be Movedwith the Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam, and a tour with Gustavo Dudamel andthe LA Phil, singing Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms in Los Angeles, NewYork’s Lincoln Center, London’s Barbican, and the Philharmonie de Paris. Heclosed out his season performing the role of the Refugee in Jonathan Dove's Flightat Des Moines Metro Opera to critical acclaim.
Past highlights haveincluded singing the title role in Xerxes at the Glimmerglass Festival in 2017,a debut with Boston Baroque in the role of Tolomeo in Handel’s Giulio Cesarein Egitto in 2016, Holiday’s 2016 Spoleto Festival debut in theworld premiere of Paradise Interrupted, his 2014 debuts with Los AngelesOpera as the Sorceress in Barrie Kosky’s acclaimed production of Purcell’s Didoand Aeneas, and with Wolf Trap Opera as Caesar in Handel’s Giulio Cesarein Egitto, as well as engagements with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra,the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, the Chorus of Westerly in Rhode Island, theNashville Symphony, and programs with Ars Lyrica and Mercury Baroque in Houston,Texas. Holiday joined the roster of the Metropolitan Opera in 2013 to cover therole of Nireno in David McVicar's acclaimed production of Giulio Cesare inEgitto, and his operatic stage debut was with Portland Opera in GalileoGalilei.
"The voice that rang from the stage that day was unique, powerfullyc lear with clarion high notes... In the balcony, people exchanged looks of astonishment."
- San Francisco Classical Voice
In addition to theMarian Anderson and YBCA 100 Awards, numerous other major competitions andaward programs have recognized Holiday’s accomplishments. He is a 2014recipient of the Catherine Filene Shouse Career Development Grant from the WolfTrap Foundation for the Performing Arts and is also a recipient of the RichardF. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation, first prize from the RichardTucker Foundation Sara Tucker award, and third place winner of OPERALIA. He wasawarded first place at both the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competitionfor 2013 and the Sullivan Foundation for 2012. Holiday also received a firstplace win at the Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition. In 2007, he was thefirst place winner in his district of the Metropolitan Opera National CouncilAuditions.
Alongside hisclassical repertoire, Holiday excels in jazz and gospel music having opened forGrammy award winner Jason Mraz in concert. Holiday recently released his debutjazz album entitled The Holiday Guide.
He received aBachelor of Music in vocal performance from Southern Methodist University inDallas, Texas, a Master of Music in vocal performance from the University ofCincinnati College – Conservatory of Music and the Artist Diploma in OperaStudies from The Juilliard School in New York City. Holiday grew up inRosenberg, Texas, located near Houston, and attended the town’s public schools.