Baritone and Philadelphia native, Matthew Maisano enjoys performing a variety of repertoire ranging from opera, concert works, and art song to musical theater, the American Songbook, and pop. Known for his “commanding” and “imposing” stage presence, Matthew has sung with many local and regional opera companies. Most recently, he returned to Children’s Opera Box (Philadelphia, PA) as Don Magnifico in a children’s opera adaptation of Rossini’s Cinderella. Earlier this fall, Matthew made his Opera Philadelphia debut in the chorus of Prokofiev’s The Love for Three Oranges. In January, he will return to sing in the chorus of Verdi’s Requiem. In June 2020, he will sing Kinesias in Mark Adamo’s Lysistrata with Pittsburgh Festival Opera.
This past summer, Matthew joined The Penn Square Music Festival (Lancaster, PA) singing, The Strong Man in Malcom Fox's Sid the Serpent Who Wanted to Sing. He also sang with Opera Tutti! (West Chester, PA) as Bob in The Old Maid and the Thief. In May, Matthew made his debut with The Natchez Festival of Music playing Senex in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and covering Schaunard/singing in the chorus of La Bohème. In winter 2019, Matthew sang his third Melchior in Amahl and the Night Visitors, this time with Children’s Opera Box! He also played the First Step Sister in Warren Martin’s fractured fairytale, The True Story of Cinderella with Opera Tutti!.
Other operatic highlights include, Eugene Onegin in Eugene Onegin (Russian Opera Workshop), Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro (Wilmington Concert Opera and Cleveland Institute of Music Opera Theater), Ben in The Telephone (Endeavor Opera Theater), Pandolfe in Cendrillon (Miami Music Festival), Morbio in Die schweigsame Frau and Baptista in Kiss Me, Kate! (Pittsburgh Festival Opera), Huascar in Les indes Galantes (Amherst Early Music Festival), Marco in Gianni Schicchi, Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus, and Albert in Werther (Temple University Opera Theater), Ottokar in Der Freischütz (Wilmington Concert Opera), and Antonio in The Gondoliers (Greensboro Light Opera & Song).
A performer of concert and sacred works, Matthew traveled to Haiti in January (2019) to perform in a collaborative concert with Trinity Episcopal Church (Swarthmore, PA), The Holy Trinity Cathedral Choir (Port-au-Prince, Haiti) and The Institution St. Louis de Gonzague (Port-au-Prince, Haiti). The concert included many sacred and Haitian choral works as well as Schubert’s Mass in G, in which Matthew was the baritone soloist. Matthew made his Kimmel Center solo debut in November, 2018 singing the bass solos in Bach’s Magnificat and Mozart’s Coronation Mass with Philadelphia’s VoxAmaDeus Ensemble. In 2017, Matthew sang Siméon in Debussy's L'enfant prodigue with Trinity Episcopal Church (Swarthmore, PA). He was also the baritone soloist in Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass at Fairmount Presbyterian Church (Cleveland Heights, OH), Bach's Cantata 140, Charpentier’s Messe de Minuit, and Schubert’s Mass in G and Mass in C at Trinity. During his time in Cleveland, Matthew performed with Case Western Reserve University’s Baroque Chamber Ensemble, Baroque Orchestra, and Collegium as a baritone soloist in Bach’s Cantata 58, Bruhn’s De Profundis, and Merula’s Credidi.
An avid recitalist, Matthew participated in 2016’s Cleveland Art Song Festival at Baldwin Wallace singing in a number of masterclasses and recitals. In 2013, Matthew collaborated with mezzo-soprano Anna Saurman to create and perform a program entitled Unsex me Here: A Recital Challenging Gender in Art Song performed at Temple University. That same year, he premiered The Broken Ground: Seven Poems of Wendell Berry, a song set composed by Ryan Carson at Cairn University. Matthew frequently gives recitals with soprano, Tracy Sturgis and pianist, James Smith at Trinity Episcopal Church (Swarthmore, PA) each year with programs of varied art song repertoire.
Matthew holds a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from The Cleveland Institute of Music (Cleveland, OH) and a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Temple University (Philadelphia. PA).
"In this version Cinderella’s father Pandolfe has a large role. Matthew Maisano encompassed the serious and comic elements of the role superbly. Maisano’s dark baritone and commanding stage presence gave the role greater dimension. The tenderness of the scenes with his daughter proved one of the evening’s highlights. And his turn from harried, henpecked husband to finally standing up to his wife and Cinderella’s stepsisters, garnered approving l laughter from the audience."
-Miami Herald & South Florida Classical, Lawrence Budmen
"Aplauso especial, para Matthew Maisano como el Padre, el personaje de carácter en la obra, que tuvo un hermoso dúo con DeLorenz./Special applause, for Matthew Maisano as the Father, the person of character in the play, who had a beautiful duet with DeLorenz."
-el Nuevo Herald, Daniel Fernández
"The comic antics of Matthew Maisano (Morbio)...added greatly to the entertainment, both vocally and in appearance."
- Pittsburgh in the Round, George. B Parous
"Matthew Maisano made a physically imposing Count Almaviva."
-Cleveland Classical, Daniel Hathaway
"The aria by the Count, sung by Matthew Maisano, is a soliloquy of sorts about his concern of how he is viewed by his servants. An aria that Bamberger said has been labeled the “greatest psychological aria in opera.” Maisano conveyed well the deep emotion of the composer’s work."
-West Lake West Bay Observer, Louise Seeholzer
"Matthew Maisano made an impressive ROW debut. His voice is stentorian at full-throttle - he sings Puccini's Michele - yet he can hone it to delicate soft singing...Matthew deftly conveyed Onegin's eternal boredom, peppered with superciliousness, condescension, misogyny and general lack of empathy...Matthew, a tall man, sang Onegin's famous aria, 'Когда бы жизнь домашним кругом' with a compelling sense of bel canto line, all the while literally looking down on a cringing, cowering Tatyana, dramatically ratcheting up, thereby, the lass's humiliation...At Gremin's society cotillion, where Onegin rediscovers the newly minted Tatyana, Matthew, animated by his character's reawakened passion, made the love-struck arioso, 'Ужель та самая Татьяна' containing an ironic reprise of the principal Letter Scene melody, a vocal high point of the evening."
-Lew's Opera Views and Experiences in Tempo (Internet Blog), Lew Loesberg
10/15/2018: Company Feature: Wilmington Concert Opera
Matthew appears in Modern Singer Magazine's featurette on Wilmington Concert Opera and their Fall 2018 production
of Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro
08/18/2018: "Anne Arundel's drag community looks to build visibility with events like Drag Queen Storytime" (Capital Gazette, Danielle Ohl)
Article about Matthew's first ever Drag Queen Story Time as "Balena Canto"
05/2018: Matthew appears on LMTV's The Library Show to discuss his career in opera and classical music. The segment begins at the 12:58 mark.
11/02/2015: "The Making of Figaro" Episode 8: Recitative
Matthew appears in the Cleveland Institute of Music's online docuseries about the institute's fall 2015 production of
Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro
10/20/2015: "The Making of Figaro" Episode 2: Meet the Cast
Matthew appears in the Cleveland Institute of Music's online docuseries about the institute's fall 2015 production of Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro