CLARENCE FRAZER

Baritone

BIOGRAPHY

Hailed as a "singer to watch" (Musical Toronto), Canadian baritone Clarence Frazer is earning praise for having a “silvery baritone that retains its silky texture through his entire range" (London Free Press) who “possesses a powerful, robust voice" (Paula Citron). His “brilliant and stalwart singing” (Calgary Herald) earned him praise in The Banff Centre’s production of Crush – “Mr. Frazer’s acting was excellent, his singing melodious, rhetorically balanced and beautiful” (Calgary Herald). In 2016, Mr. Frazer made his debut with Pacific Opera Victoria as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia and with Canadian Stage/Soundstreams Canada as Jean in the North American Premiere of Philippe Boesmans’ opera Julie.

 

Mr. Frazer is an alumnus of Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artists Program and Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio, where he made his mainstage role debut in 2015 as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia. As Figaro Mr. Frazer was “very polished,” “made for the part”  (John Gilks, Opera Ramblings). Other COC credits include Schaunard in La Bohème, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte and Prince Yamadori in Madama Butterfly. In 2016, Clarence starred in Saskatoon Opera’s Il barbiere di Siviglia. Clarence has also sung Marcello in La Bohème, Publio in La clemenza di Tito; Prince Yamadori and Imperial Commissioner in Madama Butterfly, Ford in FalstaffDaggoo in Moby-Dick, Escamillo in CarmenDandini in La Cenerentola and Sid in Albert Herring.

 

In 2017, Clarence sang the role of James Isbister in the Canadian Opera Company’s acclaimed production of Louis Riel, with further performances at National Arts Centre and L’Opera de Quebec. Highlights for the current season include two guest appearances with Windsor Symphony, Messiah and Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro (concert version) in 2018.

 

On the concert stage Mr. Frazer performed Wagner's Wesendonck at The Banff Centre with The Banff Centre Chamber Orchestra and Maestro Christopher Mokrzewski; Christus in Bach’s St. John Passion with the Metropolitan United Church Festival Choir and Orchestra as well as Mozart’s Requiem; Beethoven’s Mass in C; Orff’s Carmina Burana and Mozart’s Coronation Mass.

 

In addition to his opera and concert work Mr. Frazer won the inaugural Lois Marshall Voice Competition and was a finalist in Palm Beach Opera’s International Voice Competition and the International Vocal Competition held in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands.

As Figaro in Barber of Seville with Saskatoon Opera –

“Clarence Frazer deserves special mention for his charming performance as the sneaky character pulling the strings in the plot of this opera buffa. His expressive voice and face are central to the production’s success.”

Heather Persson, Saskatoon StarPhoenix

 

 

SELECTED ROLES

James Isbister | Louis Riel

Figaro | Il barbiere di siviglia

Marcello | La Boheme

SELECTED REPERTOIRE

Handel | Messiah

Bach | St. John Passion

Mozart | Requiem

PRESS KIT

HEADSHOTS

DOCUMENTS

Updated Aug 2017

Clarence Frazer, Baritone

RESUME

Opera

2018

Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro)

2017

James Isbister (Louis Riel)

James Isbister (Louis Riel)

Escamillo (Carmen)

William McDougall* (Louis Riel)

The Judge* (Louis Riel)

James Isbister (Louis Riel)

2016

Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia)

Guglielmo (Cosi fan tutte)

Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia)

Le Dancaïre (Carmen)

2015

Jean (Julie)

Sam (Crush)

Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia)

2014

Prince Yamadori (Madame Butterfly)

Marcello (La Boheme)

Sharpless* (Madame Butterfly)

Prince Yamadori (Madame Butterfly)

Guglielmo (Cosi fan tutte)

2013

Uberto (La serva padrona)

Schaunard* (La Boheme)

Il Sergente (La Boheme)

Publio (La clemenza di Tito)

Count Gil (ll segreto di Susanna)

Ramiro (L’heure espagnol)

Dr. Grenvil (La Traviata)

Ford* (Falstaff)

2012

Escamillo (Carmen)

Sprecher (Die zauberflöte)

Re di Scozia (Ariodante)

Alcindoro (La Boheme)

Marcello* (La Boheme)

2011

Papageno (Die zauberflöte)

Daggoo (Moby Dick)

Silvio* (I Pagliacci)

Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni)

Il Conte (Le nozze di Figaro)

2010

Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni) Mozart La musica lirica

2009

Masetto (Don Giovanni)

Dandini (La Cenerentola)

 

Mozart

 

Somers

Somers

Bizet

Somers

Somers

Somers

 

Rossini

Mozart

Rossini

Bizet

 

Boesmans

 

Rossini

 

Puccini

Puccini

Puccini

Puccini

Mozart

 

Pergolesi

Puccini

Puccini

Mozart

Wolf-Ferrari

Ravel

Verdi

Verdi

 

Bizet

Mozart

Handel

Puccini

Puccini

 

Mozart

Heggie

Leoncavallo

Mozart

Mozart

 

Mozart

 

Mozart

Rossini

 

Windsor Symphony

 

Opéra de Québec

National Arts Centre

Mississauga Symphony

Canadian Opera Company

Canadian Opera Company

Canadian Opera Company

 

Saskatoon Opera

Against the Grain

Pacific Opera Victoria

Edmonton Opera

 

Soundstreams

Banff Centre

Canadian Opera Company  Ensemble

 

Canadian Opera Company

COSI (Sulmona, Italy)

COSI (Sulmona, Italy)

Edmonton Opera

Canadian Opera Company Ensemble

 

Canadian Opera Company

Canadian Opera Company

Canadian Opera Company

COSI (Sulmona, Italy)

Calgary Opera Emerging Artists

Calgary Opera Emerging Artists

Calgary Opera

Calgary Opera

 

Highlands Opera Studio

Highlands Opera Studio

Calgary Opera Emerging Artists

Calgary Opera

Calgary Opera

 

Calgary Opera Emerging Artists

Calgary Opera

Calgary Opera

COSI (Sulmona, Italy)

UWOpera

 

La musica lirica

 

Concert Opera Group

Opera NUOVA

*cover

Oratorio & Concert

2017

Messiah

2016

Messiah

2014

St. John Passion

2012

Coronation Mass

Mass in C

2011

Requiem

2010

Cantata 205

Carmina Burana

 

Handel

 

Handel

 

Bach

 

Mozart

Beethoven

 

Mozart

 

Bach

Orff

 

Windsor Symphony Orchestra

Mississauga Symphony Orchestra

 

Metropolitan United Church

 

Toronto Sinfonietta

Calgary Festival Chorus

 

Toronto Sinfonietta

 

Orchestra London

Western University Orchestra

Accomplishments

AWARDS

2015 | Finalist, Christina and Louis Quilico Competition

2014 | Finalist, International Vocal Competition

2012 | Finalist, Canadian Opera Competition

2010 | Finalist, Palm Beach Opera Competition

2008 | First Prize, Lois Marshall Competition

 

TRAINING

2013 – 16 | Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio

2013 | Centre for Opera in Italy

2012 | Highlands Opera Studio

2011 – 13 | Calgary Opera Young Artist Program

2011 | Centre for Opera in Italy

2010 | La musica lirica

2006 – 11 | University of Western Ontario, Voice Performance

 

TEACHERS & COACHES

Sanford Sylvan, The Juilliard School

Wendy Nielsen, Canadian Opera Company

Timothy Noble, Indiana University and Canadian Opera Company

Marlena Malas, Canadian Opera Company

Liz Upchurch, Canadian Opera Company

Rachel Andrist, Canadian Opera Company

Ben Melansek, Canadian Opera Company

Stephen Hargreaves, Canadian Opera Company

Kevin Murphy, Canadian Opera Company

Michael McMahon, McGill University

REVIEWS

As Figaro in Barber of Seville with Saskatoon Opera –

“Clarence Frazer deserves special mention for his charming performance as the sneaky character pulling the strings in the plot of this opera buffa. His expressive voice and face are central to the production’s success.”

Heather Persson, Saskatoon StarPhoenix

 

As Figaro in Barber of Seville with Pacific Opera Victoria –

“Baritone Clarence Frazer is a solid Figaro, offering a pleasingly cocky version ‘Largo al factotum’, one of opera’s most famous tunes.”

Adrian Chamberlain, Victoria Times Colonist

 

“Baritone Clarence Frazer was lucky enough to get a few extra performances of Figaro in the last week, having stepped in twice for Joshua Hopkins. The comfort was visible throughout the show, plus I think Clarence really likes being Figaro. He sounds the best I've heard him yet, and he embraced the aesthetic of the production... Big gestures, light on his feet, finding all the humour among the singing.”

Jenna Douglas, Schmopera

 

“Clarence Frazer’s Figaro was also very polished... as he showed in the excerpts concert, he’s made for this part. Last night right from his first entrance he did not disappoint at all... Frazer was as assured and commanding as in his unexpected appearance on Saturday”

John Gilks, Operaramblings

 

As Jean in Julie with Canadian Stage –

“Baritone Clarence Frazer as Jean has the appropriate swagger, his warm baritone sounding fine, especially in the upper reaches.”

Joseph So, Musical Toronto

 

“As Jean, Clarence Frazer wielded a strong, soft-edged baritone. The role gave him little chance to show off either his range or power, but it did require him to maintain a high level of intensity for the entire work, which Frazer varied by subtly coloring his voice to reflect Jean’s anger, cynicism, desire and finally pity.”

Christopher Hoile, Opera News

 

“Clarence Frazer was strong as Jean, and I thought the role showed off what he does well. His sound has gotten more rich, and I even heard some similarities to Russell Braun at a few moments. He connected his singing directly to his action, always keeping his sound easy despite periods of frantic, fast-paced movement.”

Jenna Douglas, Schmopera

 

As Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte with Canadian Opera Company –

“Baritone Clarence Frazer is definitely on his way to the Verdi/Puccini repertoire. He has a powerful, robust voice with a gruffness of expression so identified with that fach.”

Paula Citron, Paulacitron.ca,

 

As Sam in Crush (James Rolfe) at Banff Centre –

"The Leporello figure, played by a brilliant and stalwart singing Clarence Frazer, portrayed a true leper of the modern times. Now renamed ‘Sam’, a cross-dressing lackey who brings a multitude of identity crises of his own, perpetually tries to escape Donna’s evil clutches. And his forced cross-dressing in Act II to fool two other characters was a brilliant premise in that a cross-dresser must now cross-dress against his will – a kind of Cherubino conceit, but one inclined to infuse greater pathos into our modern audiences. Mr. Frazer’s acting was excellent in these scenes, his singing melodious, rhetorically balanced and beautiful."

Stephan Bonfield, Calgary Herald

 

In Recital –

“Frazer sang very well in the competition, the best I’ve heard him. His ‘Largo al factotum’ was sung with impressively robust tone. He also acted with plenty of swagger. Fritz’s aria requires absolutely firm legato and accuracy of pitch. This is a piece I’ve heard him sing before, and he has improved each time... He has made huge progress in the time he’s been with the Ensemble, and undoubtedly a singer to watch.”

 

“Clarence Frazer sang and acted a terrific ‘Largo al factotum’, entering from the upper level. This baritone is singing the best I've heard him, with a blazing top and great stage presence - you really need a true ham to be a Figaro. And I appreciate his not going into the tiresome falsetto in the aria.”

Joseph So, Musical Toronto

 

“Baritone Clarence Frazer sang most of the German rep, starting with Korngold's ‘Fünf Lieder, Op. 38’. Clarence is sounding great, especially in this rep. It's not been long since I heard Clarence sing, and I thought he sounded noticeably different. He sang with a clarity and a freedom that allowed him to really enjoy the German poetry. I thought the style of the songs, all gorgeous and film-score-like, suited Clarence perfectly. It was the most present and open sound I've heard from him, and I loved it.  Two of the Korngold songs have English texts, including a setting of Shakespeare's ‘My Mistress' Eyes’; honestly, Clarence, you slayed me a bit with this one. Bravo.”

Jenna Douglas, Schmopera

 

“The recital began with a group of Schubert sung by Frazer, five of the best known pieces. Whether it was joyful or sad, fast or slow, Frazer sang with firm tone and vivid expression. I have to say that over the course of his time at the COC, Frazer has developed tremendously.  A good voice to begin with, it has grown in refinement and musicality. To my ears, he's really singing very well these days, better than at any time during his tenure here... At the same time, his top voice is blooming more than ever.  These Schubert songs were dispatched with robust tone and fine expression - his ‘Auf der Bruck’ was particularly nice, with pianist Jennifer Szeto offering perfect support. The acid test was of course the highly operatic Erlkoenig, which he sang with rich tone and very good textual nuance.”

Joseph So, Musical Toronto

 

“Clarence kicked things off... He’s come a long way... He has plenty of power, good diction and a feeling for the text. He concluded the set with a very dramatic account of Erlkönig that was packed with drama and emotion.”

John Gilks, Operaramblings