Baritone Theodore Baerg has laid claim to a major international career, with the New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Opera and Glyndebourne Festival just three of his recent destinations. Kurt Masur led him in his New York Philharmonic debut as Count Homonay in Strauss’ Zigeunerbaron in the Summer At Lincoln Center Series and he has since returned to Lincoln Center Festival for Fidelio, again under the baton of Kurt Masur. Mr. Baerg first appeared at the Glyndenbourne Festival as Ramiro in Ravel’s L’Heure Espagnole and for the San Francisco Opera as Der Musiklehrer in Ariadne auf Naxos. He has enjoyed many season at the San Francisco Opera in portrayals of Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, Ned Keene in Peter Grimes, Danilo in Die Lustige Witwe and Ping in Turandot.
Mr. Baerg’s 2006-2007 season began with his sensational run as Emil Debeque in South Pacific at the renowned Stratford Festival. Other engagements in the season included performances as Dr. Bartolo in Rossini’s Barbiere di Siviglia with the Edmonton Opera, the Musiklehrer in Ariadne auf Naxos with the Vancouver Opera, his debut the role of Dr. Daly in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Sorcerer at the Bard Festival, and performances with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and at Caramoor.
Mr. Baerg opened the 2004-2005 season at the San Francisco Opera as Mr. Redburn in Billy Budd and ended the season with his debut at Glimmerglass as des Grieux in Le Portrait de Manon. On the concert stage, he was heard in Duruflé’s Requiem with the Richard Eaton Singers of Edmonton, joined Erich Kunzel and the Toronto Symphony for a Pops evening, and was heard in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem with the Thunder Bay Symphony and Belshazzar’s Feast with Orchestra London.
In recent seasons Mr. Baerg was in Calgary and Edmonton for Malatesta in Don Pasquale and starred in the title role of Wozzeck for Pacific Opera Victoria. The busy baritone was featured in Tampa, Thunder Bay, Québec City and Hamilton (Brott Summer Music) in Carmina Burana while concerts devoted to Cole Porter and Viennese light classics took him to Vancouver and Edmonton.
Mr. Baerg’s 2003-2004 season was filled with roles new to his repertoire. These included the Father in Britten’s The Prodigal Son for the Britten Festival in Canada, Emil in South Pacific for Edmonton Opera, Count di Luna in Il Trovatore for Orchestra London and des Grieux in performances of Massenet’s Le portrait de Manon for Opera Ontario. He returned to the roles of Malatesta in Don Pasquale for Opera Lyra and Ping in Turandot for L’Opéra de Québec, and especially cherished his first War Requiem for the Britten Festival in London, Ontario.
The extensive operatic repertoire of Mr. Baerg includes Falstaff (Ford), the title roles in Rigoletto, Eugene Onegin and Don Giovanni, and Hänsel und Gretel (Peter). Other roles include Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Dandini in La cenerentola, Lescaut in Manon Lescaut, Silvio in I pagliacci, Valentin in Faust, George in Of Mice and Men and the Fabulist in Peter’s The Golden Ass.
New York City Opera audiences have hailed Mr. Baerg as the Haji in Kismet, Fontaine in The Desert Songand as the Merry Widow’s Danilo. Saraste introduced Mr. Baerg to Toronto Symphony audiences in Carmina Burana and Charles Dutoit was his conductor for the Schubert Masses No. 2 and 6 with L’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal. Davies’ Revelation, Rossini’s La petite messe solonnelle and Stabat Mater, Barber’s Dover Beach, Carmina Burana and Showboat also make regular appearances on his schedule for such organizations as the Lanaudiere and Elora festivals, L’Orchestre Symphonique du Québec, Chorus Niagara, the Kitchener Waterloo and Mendelssohn choirs and the Kingston Symphony. In addition, the dashing baritone is a popular star for orchestra evenings devoted to the works of Strauss, Lehár, and “The Best of Broadway”. Mr. Baerg is Professor of Voice and Opera at the University of Western Ontario.