Described by the NY Times as “outstanding” and “an elegant baritone with a commanding sound” Chris Pedro Trakas is celebrated for the intense, passionate vocalism he brings to an eclectic repertoire ranging from Mozart, Schubert, Rossini, Mahler and Debussy through Britten, Bernstein, Bolcom, Adams and Ellington. Career highlights include “Harlekin” in Ariadne auf Naxos at the Metropolitan Opera (Levine), Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges with the Boston Symphony Orchestra (Ozawa) and the title role in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with the St. Louis Symphony (Vonk). He received critical acclaim for his “Count” opposite Renee Fleming in Menotti’s celebrated production of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro at the Spoleto Festivals in America and Italy. Other noted performances include ‘Alberich’ in Wagner’s Rheingold with Jonathan Sheffer’s Eos Orchestra, Figaro in the St. Ann’s Warehouse puppet production of The Barber of Seville and ‘Dandini’ (La Cenerentola) at the Kennedy Center. European engagements include “Pelléas” at the Theater Basel in Switzerland as well as concert appearances in Handel’s Giulio Cesare in London and Schumann’s Szenen aus Goethe’s Faust with Sylvain Cambreling in Frankfurt. His interest and experience with contemporary opera include two world premieres by Stewart Wallace: Hopper’s Wife, directed by Christopher Alden and Yiddisher Teddy Bears at the Sundance Theatre Lab, working with the stage director/librettist Richard Foreman. He earned his Actor’s Equity card playing ‘Amiens’ in Shakespeare’s As You Like It at San Diego’s Old Globe Theatre.
A distinguished recitalist, he has collaborated with many important pianists including James Levine (Dichterliebe, Histoires Naturelles, Don Quichotte à Dulcinée – Ravinia Festival), Françoise René Duchable (Winterreise – Newport) and David Del Tredici at the world premiere’s of the composer/pianist’s Three Songs (recorded by CRI) and Love Addiction (to be recorded by Koch Classics). On Lincoln Center’s Great Performers series he shared recitals with Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Amy Burton and pianists Glenn Parker, John Musto and Steven Blier. A winner of the Naumburg Award (sharing first prize with Dawn Upshaw) and the Young Concert Artists International Competition, Mr. Trakas made auspicious New York debuts at Alice Tully Hall and the 92nd Street Y. He gave the first complete performance of Schubert’s Winterreise in Malta with pianist. Recordings include Hyperion’s Complete Songs of Ernest Chausson with Felicity Lott, Ann Murray and Graham Johnson, chosen by The Guardian as “Classical CD of the Week.”
Mr. Trakas has also performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Israel Philharmonic, and Danish National Radio Orchestra. He sang the world premiere of Gian Carlo Menotti’s O Llama de Amor Viva with Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos and the Spoleto FestivalOrchestra (Concerto in Piazza). In recent seasons, he has appeared in concert with the Arc Ensemble in Toronto, Peter Flint’s innovative Avian Music and the Fireworks Ensemble in New York, at the Kennedy Center with Angel Gil Ordoñez’s Post-Classical Ensemble and in Schubert’s Winterreise at Brooklyn’s Bargemusic.
Formerly on the faculties of the North Carolina School of the Arts and Stony Brook University, Mr. Trakas has also guest instructed at the Juilliard School. He holds B.A. and M.M. degrees in music history, organ and voice from Eckerd College and the University of Houston. He has homes in New York City and St. Petersburg Florida.