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ROBERT
MACFARLANE

TENOR

Robert Macfarlane preferred headshot smaller2

Robert Macfarlane studied at the Elder Conservatorium in Adelaide and subsequently at the Hochschule für Musik, Leipzig ‘Felix Mendelssohn-Bartoldy’ with Prof. Dr. Jeanette Favaro-Reuter, as recipient of the prestigious Thomas Elder Overseas Scholarship. He undertook extensive study of the Baroque repertoire with tenor Howard Crook and has also studied and performed with world-renowned accompanist Malcolm Martineau.  Robert Macfarlane was the winner of the Adelaide Critic’s Circle award for best individual performance in 2012 (Bach- St. John Passion), a finalist in the Lortzing Competition in Germany in 2013, and winner of the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Aria competition in  2009.

Most recently Robert made his debut with Opera de Lyon performing Tybalt in Boris Blacher’s Roméo et Juliette, and with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in the role of Pong in Turandot. He also performed Israel in Egypt for the Halberstädter Domfestspiele, Bach St John Passion in Belgium and Rossini’s Petite Messe for Canberra International Music Festival along with his return to the Halberstädter Domfestspiele for Haydn’s The Seasons. His 2017 engagements include St Matthew Passion (Evangelist) with Sydney Philharmonia, the role of Kornelius in Saint Saëns’ The Japanese Princess for Lyric Opera, Carmina Burana and Belshazzar’s Feast with Adelaide Philharmonic Chorus and his debut with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in the Kats-Chernin version of the prologue to Monteverdi’s Orfeo. He will also return to Germany and Japan for concert performances and will reprise the role of Renaud in Lully’s Armide on tour in Europe.

Robert made his European Opera Debut in the virtuosic role of Ircano in Hasse’s Semiramide in Graz and Leipzig in 2014, for which he was highly acclaimed by the Austrian critics. On the opera stage, he has also sung Monostatos (The Magic Flute) for West Australian Opera; Orfeo (Peri’s Euridice) for Woodend Winter Arts Festival; the title role in Rameau's Pygmalion for the Peninsula Festival; Notary (La Sonnambula), Parpignol (La Boheme), Beppe (Pagliacci) and 3rd Jew (Salome) for State Opera of South Australia; Acis (Acis and Galatea) in Malaysia and Singapore; the roles of Echo and Pastore (and understudying the title role) in L'Orfeo with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra for Brisbane Festival and in Sydney and Melbourne; and he has also performed with Pinchgut Opera, Lyric Opera of Melbourne and Co-Opera.

Robert is known internationally for his performances of Bach, in particular the Evangelist of the St. John and St. Matthew Passions, and was the 2008 and 2009 Bach Scholar in the St. Johns Bach Cantata program in Melbourne. He made his debut in Leipzig’s Thomaskirche in 2013 as the tenor soloist in Bach’s Mass in B Minor, with the Gewandhaus Orchestra and Thomanerchor under the direction of Georg Christoph Biller, returning the following year to perform Wär Gott nicht bei uns diese Zeit. Other acclaimed concert performances include soloist in semi-staged performances of St. Matthew Passion for Opera Queensland; Britten St Nicolas with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra; Mozart Great Mass in C minor at St George's Cathedral, Perth; Handel's Messiah and Solomon; Monteverdi’s Vespers at the Melbourne Recital Centre and the Adelaide Festival; Britten's Serenade and Les Illuminations; recitals of Schubert's Die Schöne Müllerin, Winterreise and Schwanengesang and Schumann's Dichterliebe and Liederkreis with pianist Leigh Harrold, Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch with Anthony Legge, and for ArtSong Canberra and The Firm in Adelaide.

Robert also performs in the new music ensemble Duo Trystero with guitarist Aleksandr Tsiboulski, which has given the Australian premieres of works by Alec Roth, Wolfgang Fortner, Alexander Goehr and Paul Dessau and world premieres of works by David Kotlowy, Luke Altmann and Anne Cawrse.

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