AZO Cast Members & Creatives
Brent Michael Smith
Acclaimed by Opera News as a “standout,” young American bass, Brent Michael Smith, is a rising star whose rich voice and dynamic stage presence have attracted the attention of companies across the United States. This Fall, Brent joins the roster of resident artists at the esteemed Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, where he will study with Bill Schuman. He will sing Ferrando in Il trovatore, Fafner in Das Rheingold and Truffaldino in Ariadne auf Naxos. He also makes his debut with Arizona Opera singing The God of Evil and Procrustes in their production of Hercules vs Vampires, a new score by Patrick Morganelli synchronized to the 1961 cult classic film Hercules in the Haunted World. This summer, Brent made his mainstage debut with The Glimmerglass Festival as Ariodate in Xerxes. He also starred as The Commentator in Derrick Wang’s Scalia/Ginsburg, which featured a talk back by the notorious RBG herself.
Brent recently finished his time as a Resident Artist at Michigan Opera Theatre (MOT). His roles at MOT this past season included: Zuniga in Carmen, the British Major in the Pulitzer Prize winning opera, Silent Night, by Kevin Puts, Friedrich Bhaer in Little Women, Ashby in La fanciulla del West and Marquis de Brisaille in David DiChiera’s Cyrano. In February, Brent made his debut with Toledo Opera, performing Antonio in The Marriage of Figaro.
During his first season as a Resident Artist with MOT, Brent made his debut as Colline in La bohème. Other notable roles that season were the Second SS Officer in The Passenger, Grandpa Moss in The Tender Land, The Doctor in Macbeth and the Speaker in The Magic Flute. In 2015, Brent sang Harry Hopkins in the world premiere of Daron Hagen’s A Woman in Morocco, as a part of Kentucky Opera’s American Opera Initiative. Brent has also been young artist with Sarasota Opera, Central City Opera and with Des Moines Metro Opera where Colorado Music Buzz praised him for “making the most of his brief appearances” as Billy Jackrabbit in La fanciulla del West.
Brent received his master of music degree from the University of Northern Iowa (UNI), singing under the tutelage of John Hines. He received his bachelor’s degree in music from Hope College (Holland, MI), majoring in piano performance and minoring in Spanish. He studied voice with Linda Dykstra. Brent is a first-place winner of the Grand Rapids Opera Competition (2012).