Finalist: David Pershall, Baritone
Baritone David Pershall is a graduate of the Yale Opera Program where he recently performed the title role of Don Giovanni, Escamillo in La Tragedie de Carmen, Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro, Grigory Smirnov in The Bear, and Papageno in Die Zauberflöte. In addition to his operatic performances he presented recitals of Mahler's Rückert-Lieder, Brahms' Die Schöne Magelone, and was the Baritone Sololist in the East Coast Premier of Aaron Jay Kernis' Symphony of Meditations. He also performed and recorded Don Pedro in Donizetti's Maria Padilla at the Beethoven Easter Festival. In 2011, David won first prize at the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition. In 2010, he won first place at the Connecticut Opera Guild Competition, the Encouragement Award at the George London Foundation, Fifth Prize at the Licia Albenese-Puccini Foundation, and the prestigious Presser Music Award at Yale University. His other awards include: the David L. Kasdon Memorial Prize for the Outstanding Singer in the Yale School of Music, National Semi-finalist and 1st place winner in the Southwest Region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the Thomas Stewart Award for Vocal Excellence, and an Artist Grant Award through the National Bel Canto Vocal Scholarship Foundation.
David's upcoming performances include Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia at the Opera Theater of Connecticut, Grigory Smirnov in The Bear at Carnegie Hall, the Baritone Soloist in Carmina Burana with the Hartford Symphony, and the baritone soloist in Ralph Vaughn Williams' Sea Symphony with the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra.