Dispeker Artists, Inc.

Lawrence Wiliford

Lawrence Wiliford


Tenor

LAWRENCE WILIFORD tenor

Lauded for his luminous projection, lyrical sensitivity, and brilliant coloratura, American-Canadian tenor Lawrence Wiliford is in high demand in concert, opera, and recital repertoire. 2019-20 season highlights include a performance of Mozart’s Requiem with the Eugene Symphony, Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Back Bay Chorale, Bach’s St. John Passion with the Florida Orchestra, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Hamilton Philharmonic, Beethoven’s Mass in C Major with the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Rochester Philharmonic, Mozart’s Requiem with the Seattle Symphony, and a performance of Considering Matthew Shephard with Pax Christi Chorale.

In the 2018-19 season, Mr. Wiliford performed Mozart’s Coronation Mass with Les Violins Du Roy, a new work by Zachary Wadsworth with Chor Leoni Men’s Choir, Handel’s Messiah with the Phoenix Symphony, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Bach’s St. John Passion at the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, and Bach’s St. John Passion with Luminous Voices.

Other recent engagements include Mozart’s Requiem with Hamilton Philharmonic, ProMusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, and the Milwaukee Symphony (under Matthew Halls), Messiah with the Tuscon Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, Phoenix Symphony, and Philadelphia Orchestra (under Nathalie Stutzmann), Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Bach’s St John Passion with Grand Philharmonic Choir, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle with Luminous Voices in Calgary, Elgar’s The Apostles with the Pax Christi Chorale, and a return to the Aldeburgh Festival for performances as ‘Flute’ in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Other concert appearances of note include Handel’s Messiah with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, Louisiana Philharmonic, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Edmonton Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra. He has sung the Evangelist in St. Matthew Passion with the Calgary Philharmonic, Orchestre Métropolitain, and Toronto Bach Consort; Mass in B-minor with the Louisiana Philharmonic, Music of the Baroque, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Naciónal de Mexico, Oregon Bach Festival, Toronto Symphony, and Vancouver Chamber Choir; the Evangelist in St. John Passion with the Orquesta Sinfónica Naciónal de Costa Rica; Mozart’s Requiem with the Indianapolis Symphony, Tafelmusik, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra; Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings with I Musici de Montréal; Elijah with the Colorado Symphony; Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 at the Oregon Bach Festival; Bach’s Christmas Oratorio and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the National Arts Center Orchestra; and Beethoven’s Mass in C-Major and Stravinsky’s Pulcinella with the Houston Symphony.

Operatic highlights from recent seasons include making his Canadian Opera Company debut as Ferrando in Mozart’s Così fan tutte on five hours’ notice, to great acclaim. He has additionally appeared with the Canadian Opera Company as Francis Flute in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Roy in James Rolfe’s Swoon. He has performed with Toronto’s Opera Atelier as Belmonte and Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Damon in Acis and Galatea, Mercure in Lully’s Persée, and Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni; with Opera Lyra Ottawa as Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia; with Toronto Masque Theatre as the title role in Acis and Galatea; with Aldeburgh Music as Quint in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw; with Vancouver Opera in the title role of Albert Herring; with Edmonton Opera as Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance and Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail; with Pacific Opera Victoria in the title role of Albert Herring and Leo in the Canadian premiere of Mark Blitzstein’s Regina; and with MusicFest Vancouver and Boston Baroque in the title role of Rameau’s Pygmalion.

Mr. Wiliford has collaborated with conductors Jane Glover, Matthew Halls, Nicholas McGegan, John Nelson, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Peter Oundjian, Trevor Pinnock, Helmuth Rilling, and Pinchas Zukerman. He has recorded St. John Passion with Les Voix Baroques and the Arion Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Alex Weimann, and his debut solo recording Divine Musick: The Late Works for Tenor and Harp by Benjamin Britten, on the ATMA Classique and NAXOS labels.

Mr. Wiliford holds a Bachelor of Music in church music from St. Olaf College and a Master of Music in vocal performance from the University of Toronto. He has studied at Tanglewood, the Internationale Bachakademie of Stuttgart, the Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival, and the Britten-Pears Young Artist Program. Mr. Wiliford is a graduate of the Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio and is a recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council. In addition to his performing schedule, Mr. Wiliford is co-artistic director of the Canadian Art Song Project.

Born in Muskegon, Michigan, Mr. Wiliford became a member of the American Boychoir School in Princeton, New Jersey at the age of 10. While a student at St. Olaf College, he sang with the St. Olaf Choir, became a published choral arranger, and was one of the founding members of the male vocal chamber ensemble Cantus, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

February 2, 2020: Canadian Art Song Project (co-directed by Lawrence Wiliford) receives first JUNO nomination

Canadian Art Song Project (CASP) is proud to announce that Healey Willan: Summer Night and other songs for voice and piano has been nominated for a 2020 JUNO award as best choral / vocal solo recording. This is the first JUNO nomination for the organization since its founding in 2011 by artistic directors Lawrence Wiliford and Steven Philcox. The named artists for the nomination are baritone Peter Barrett, soprano Martha Guth, mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, and pianist Helen Becqué.

Devoted entirely to Healey Willan’s vocal solo song compositions, Summer Night features some of the composer’s most well-known and often performed songs, but also includes formerly unpublished gems that have been edited and published by CASP and recorded here for the first time.

Lawrence Wiliford, co-artistic director of Canadian Art Song Project, hopes this nomination will  spur interest in the rich body of art song literature in the Canadian canon: “Willan always held his songs in high regard and believed that they deserved more attention. We can only imagine that this nomination will help reignite interest in his significant repertoire for solo voice and piano.”

Source:https://www.canadianartsongproject.ca/healey-willan-summer-night-a-2020-juno-award-nominee/

January 28, 2020: Chor Leoni Men’s Choir, featuring tenor Lawrence Wiliford, Nominated for JUNO Award

A Juno Nominee for Classical Album of the Year: Choral or Vocal, When There Is Peace: An Armistice Oratorio by rising star and Chor Leoni Composer-in-Residence Zachary Wadsworth is Chor Leoni’s first recording since winning the prestigious Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence from the professional organisation, Chorus America.

Joining Chor Leoni to tell this compelling story are the renowned Borealis String Quartet, noted Canadian tenor Lawrence Wiliford, soprano Arwen Myers, and percussionists Martin Fisk and Robin Reid.

Source:https://chorleoni.org/product/when-there-is-peace-an-armistice-oratorio/

March 16, 2019: Featuring Lawrence Wiliford, Tenor, Vaughan Williams: Orchestral Works Receives JUNO Award

As announced today by the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) during the 48th annual JUNO Awards ceremony, the recording of Vaughan Williams: Orchestral Works featuring the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) received a JUNO Award in the Best Classical Album: Large Ensemble category.

Artists
Carla Huhtanen | Soprano
Emily D’Angelo | Mezzo-soprano
Lawrence Wiliford | Tenor
Tyler Duncan | Baritone
Louis Lortie | Piano
Teng Li | Viola
Sarah Jeffrey | Oboe
Elmer Iseler Singers
Toronto Symphony Orchestra
Peter Oundjian

Source:https://www.broadwayworld.com/toronto/article/Vaughan-Williams-Orchestral-Works-Featuring-The-Toronto-Symphony-Orchestra-Receives-JUNO-Award-20190316

Beethoven’s 9th earns standing ovation

“Tenor Lawrence Wiliford embodied the swirling outward drama of Schubert’s ‘Ganymed’ in intelligent nuances in tempo and fresh vocal characterization…At each of its moments, the quartet of soloists came through admirably in each of its notoriously thorny passages. Tenor Lawrence Wiliford was spirited at a tempo near the fast end of the spectrum.”

– Jennifer Hambrick, The Columbus DispatchRelated Link

Luminous Voices: St. John Passion

“As the evangelist, Lawrence Wiliford was as polished and elegant as anything one could wish for. For beauty of voice, dramatic projection, and a deep understanding of the music, Wiliford was the equal of any tenor on anyone’s favourite CDs. Colouring the words effectively and showing no apparent effort, he eloquently sang music that is vocally challenging and often very high — the perfect light tenor for the job. It was a magnificent performance.”

– Kenneth Delong, Calgary HeraldRelated Link

Review: Spiritus Chamber Choir gifts audience with rarely sung Handel piece

“The lion’s share of the narration is given to the tenor, on this occasion sung by Lawrence Wiliford. Even more than on other occasions, he was in his element here. His voice is perfect for this type of Handel, and in the beautiful Bella Concert Hall, he didn’t need to push the sound. The result was eloquent Handelian singing at its finest.”

– Kenneth Delong, Calgary HeraldRelated Link

RECORD KEEPING | Lawrence Wiliford’s Pitch-Perfect ‘O Gladsome Light’ Shines The Way

“One could hardly imagine a better performance than the one on this album, with Canadian tenor Lawrence Wiliford offering pitch-perfect intonation and beautiful tone.”

– Paul E. Robinson, Ludwig Van TorontoRelated Link

O GLADSOME LIGHT — LAWRENCE WILIFORD

“Wiliford sings beautifully in what one might call the ‘Aldeburgh style.’ It’s light, clear, sensitive and every word is clearly audible…it does the music full justice.”

– John Gilks, Opera CanadaRelated Link

 

When There Is Peace: An Armistice Oratorio – Chor Leoni | Released 10/01/2019


 

O Gladsome Light – Stone Records | Released 09/29/2017


 

Wadsworth: The Far West – Bridge Records | Released 05/08/2016


 

Palej: Cloud Light – Centrediscs | Released 02/12/2016


 

Holman: Ash Roses – Centrediscs | Released 03/28/2014


 

Bach: Johannes-Passion – ATMA Classique | Released 01/31/2012


 

Britten: Divine Musick. The Late Works for Tenor and Harp – ATMA Classique | Released 09/28/2010


 

Carissimi Oratorios – ATMA Classique | Released 02/01/2010


 

Samuel Arnold: Polly – Naxos | Released 04/01/2010


Orchestral

  • Bach
    Magnificat
    Mass in B-minor
    Oster Oratorium
    St. John Passion (Arias and Evangelist)
    St. Mark Passion (Aria and Evangelist) Edited by Simon Heighes
    St. Matthew Passion (Arias and Evangelist)
    Weinachts Oratorium (Arias and Evangelist)
    [many various cantatas]

    Beethoven
    Mass in C
    Missa Solemnis
    Symphony No. 9

    Britten
    Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Op. 31
    St. Nicholas

    Buxtehude
    Dixit Dominus Domino Meo
    Memebra Jesu Nostri

    Carissimi
    Historia di Abraham et Isaac
    Historia di Baltazar
    Jephte
    Jonas
    Vanitas Vanitatum

    Elgar
    Apostles

    Finzi
    Dies Natalis

    Handel
    Alexander’s Feast
    Dixit Dominus
    Israel in Egypt
    Messiah
    Ode for St. Cecilia’s Day
    Solomon

    Haydn
    Die Schöpfung
    Nelson Mass

    Ives
    The Celestial Country

    Mendelssohn
    Elijah
    Lobgesang (Symphony No. 2)

    Monteverdi
    Vespers of 1610

    Mozart
    Coronation Mass
    Mass in C Minor
    Requiem Mass

Opera

  • Britten
    A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Francis Flute, Lysander)
    The Turn of the Screw (Prologue/Quint)
    Albert Herring (Albert Herring)

    Charpentier
    La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers (Orphée)

    Handel
    Acis and Galatea (Acis, Demon)
    Rodelinda (Grimoaldo)

    Lully
    Persée (Mercure)

    Monteverdi
    Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria (Eumete)

    Mozart
    Così fan Tutte (Ferrando)
    Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Pedrillo, Belmonte)
    Die Zauberflöte (Tamino)
    Don Giovanni (Don Ottavio)
    Bastien und Bastienne (Bastien)

    Rameau
    Pygmalion (Pygmalion)
    La Guirlande (Myrtil)

    Sullivan
    Pirates of Penzance (Frederic)

     

Orchestral

  • Bach
    Magnificat
    Mass in B-minor
    Oster Oratorium
    St. John Passion (Arias and Evangelist)
    St. Mark Passion (Aria and Evangelist) Edited by Simon Heighes
    St. Matthew Passion (Arias and Evangelist)
    Weinachts Oratorium (Arias and Evangelist)
    [many various cantatas]

    Beethoven
    Mass in C
    Missa Solemnis
    Symphony No. 9

    Britten
    Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Op. 31
    St. Nicholas

    Buxtehude
    Dixit Dominus Domino Meo
    Memebra Jesu Nostri

    Carissimi
    Historia di Abraham et Isaac
    Historia di Baltazar
    Jephte
    Jonas
    Vanitas Vanitatum

    Elgar
    Apostles

    Finzi
    Dies Natalis

    Handel
    Alexander’s Feast
    Dixit Dominus
    Israel in Egypt
    Messiah
    Ode for St. Cecilia’s Day
    Solomon

    Haydn
    Die Schöpfung
    Nelson Mass

    Ives
    The Celestial Country

    Mendelssohn
    Elijah
    Lobgesang (Symphony No. 2)

    Monteverdi
    Vespers of 1610

    Mozart
    Coronation Mass
    Mass in C Minor
    Requiem Mass

Opera

  • Britten
    A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Francis Flute, Lysander)
    The Turn of the Screw (Prologue/Quint)
    Albert Herring (Albert Herring)

    Charpentier
    La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers (Orphée)

    Handel
    Acis and Galatea (Acis, Demon)
    Rodelinda (Grimoaldo)

    Lully
    Persée (Mercure)

    Monteverdi
    Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria (Eumete)

    Mozart
    Così fan Tutte (Ferrando)
    Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Pedrillo, Belmonte)
    Die Zauberflöte (Tamino)
    Don Giovanni (Don Ottavio)
    Bastien und Bastienne (Bastien)

    Rameau
    Pygmalion (Pygmalion)
    La Guirlande (Myrtil)

    Sullivan
    Pirates of Penzance (Frederic)

     

Audio

Bach: St. Matthew Passion – O Schmerz

Bach: St. Matthew Passion: Ich Will Bei Meinem Jesu Wachen

Croft (Arr. Britten): A Hymn on Divine Music

Britten: Canticle V – The Death of Narcissus

Mendelssohn: Elijah – Then Shall the Righteous Shine Forth

Bach: Mass in B Minor – Benedictus

Holman: Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal

Holst: Song for Voice and Violin

Documents

Short Biography

Lauded for his luminous projection, lyrical sensitivity, and brilliant coloratura, American-Canadian tenor Lawrence Wiliford is in high demand in concert, opera, and recital repertoire. 2019-20 season highlights include a performance of Mozart’s Requiem with the Eugene Symphony, Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Back Bay Chorale, Bach’s St. John Passion with the Florida Orchestra, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Hamilton Philharmonic, Beethoven’s Mass in C Major with the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Rochester Philharmonic, Mozart’s Requiem with the Seattle Symphony, and a performance of Considering Matthew Shephard with Pax Christi Chorale.

In the 2018-19 season, Mr. Wiliford performed Mozart’s Coronation Mass with Les Violins Du Roy, a new work by Zachary Wadsworth with Chor Leoni Men’s Choir, Handel’s Messiah with the Phoenix Symphony, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Bach’s St. John Passion at the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, and Bach’s St. John Passion with Luminous Voices.

Full Biography

LAWRENCE WILIFORD tenor

Lauded for his luminous projection, lyrical sensitivity, and brilliant coloratura, American-Canadian tenor Lawrence Wiliford is in high demand in concert, opera, and recital repertoire. 2019-20 season highlights include a performance of Mozart’s Requiem with the Eugene Symphony, Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Back Bay Chorale, Bach’s St. John Passion with the Florida Orchestra, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Hamilton Philharmonic, Beethoven’s Mass in C Major with the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Rochester Philharmonic, Mozart’s Requiem with the Seattle Symphony, and a performance of Considering Matthew Shephard with Pax Christi Chorale.

In the 2018-19 season, Mr. Wiliford performed Mozart’s Coronation Mass with Les Violins Du Roy, a new work by Zachary Wadsworth with Chor Leoni Men’s Choir, Handel’s Messiah with the Phoenix Symphony, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Bach’s St. John Passion at the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, and Bach’s St. John Passion with Luminous Voices.

Other recent engagements include Mozart’s Requiem with Hamilton Philharmonic, ProMusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, and the Milwaukee Symphony (under Matthew Halls), Messiah with the Tuscon Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, Phoenix Symphony, and Philadelphia Orchestra (under Nathalie Stutzmann), Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Bach’s St John Passion with Grand Philharmonic Choir, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle with Luminous Voices in Calgary, Elgar’s The Apostles with the Pax Christi Chorale, and a return to the Aldeburgh Festival for performances as ‘Flute’ in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Other concert appearances of note include Handel’s Messiah with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, Louisiana Philharmonic, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Edmonton Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra. He has sung the Evangelist in St. Matthew Passion with the Calgary Philharmonic, Orchestre Métropolitain, and Toronto Bach Consort; Mass in B-minor with the Louisiana Philharmonic, Music of the Baroque, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Naciónal de Mexico, Oregon Bach Festival, Toronto Symphony, and Vancouver Chamber Choir; the Evangelist in St. John Passion with the Orquesta Sinfónica Naciónal de Costa Rica; Mozart’s Requiem with the Indianapolis Symphony, Tafelmusik, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra; Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings with I Musici de Montréal; Elijah with the Colorado Symphony; Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 at the Oregon Bach Festival; Bach’s Christmas Oratorio and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the National Arts Center Orchestra; and Beethoven’s Mass in C-Major and Stravinsky’s Pulcinella with the Houston Symphony.

Operatic highlights from recent seasons include making his Canadian Opera Company debut as Ferrando in Mozart’s Così fan tutte on five hours’ notice, to great acclaim. He has additionally appeared with the Canadian Opera Company as Francis Flute in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Roy in James Rolfe’s Swoon. He has performed with Toronto’s Opera Atelier as Belmonte and Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Damon in Acis and Galatea, Mercure in Lully’s Persée, and Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni; with Opera Lyra Ottawa as Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia; with Toronto Masque Theatre as the title role in Acis and Galatea; with Aldeburgh Music as Quint in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw; with Vancouver Opera in the title role of Albert Herring; with Edmonton Opera as Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance and Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail; with Pacific Opera Victoria in the title role of Albert Herring and Leo in the Canadian premiere of Mark Blitzstein’s Regina; and with MusicFest Vancouver and Boston Baroque in the title role of Rameau’s Pygmalion.

Mr. Wiliford has collaborated with conductors Jane Glover, Matthew Halls, Nicholas McGegan, John Nelson, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Peter Oundjian, Trevor Pinnock, Helmuth Rilling, and Pinchas Zukerman. He has recorded St. John Passion with Les Voix Baroques and the Arion Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Alex Weimann, and his debut solo recording Divine Musick: The Late Works for Tenor and Harp by Benjamin Britten, on the ATMA Classique and NAXOS labels.

Mr. Wiliford holds a Bachelor of Music in church music from St. Olaf College and a Master of Music in vocal performance from the University of Toronto. He has studied at Tanglewood, the Internationale Bachakademie of Stuttgart, the Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival, and the Britten-Pears Young Artist Program. Mr. Wiliford is a graduate of the Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio and is a recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council. In addition to his performing schedule, Mr. Wiliford is co-artistic director of the Canadian Art Song Project.

Born in Muskegon, Michigan, Mr. Wiliford became a member of the American Boychoir School in Princeton, New Jersey at the age of 10. While a student at St. Olaf College, he sang with the St. Olaf Choir, became a published choral arranger, and was one of the founding members of the male vocal chamber ensemble Cantus, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.