Metropolitan Opera Baritone, Mark Oswald – one of NY’s 5 famed teachers

Mark’s Career Bio:

Mark Oswald has been a Classical Voice Teacher since 1999 while continuing to sing (until 2003) at the Metropolitan Opera and other major opera companies around the world, such as Vienna, Hamburg, Venice, Spain (Tenerife), France (L’Orange Festival). He spent 13 seasons at the Met, singing hundreds of performances, and each season was consistently hired in principal roles. He was a singer who rarely strayed from his fach, the lyric baritone repertoire.

Musical rehearsals with James Levine were always the highlight of his season at the Met. Maestro Levine very frequently chose Mark to be in his productions as a leading lyric baritone, or even a leading tenor such as Arbace in Idomeneo opposite Placido Domingo, and chose Mark to sing in his 25th Anniversary Gala. Mark’s debut as Papageno (under James Levine’s baton) also made him one of the youngest male singers in the history of the Met to debut in a leading role.

Mark has sung alongside nearly every well known and admired singer of the past 20 years at the Met in principal roles. He is considered by his Met colleagues as a solid technical and musical singer with excellent high notes, and this can be heard in his recordings of Carmina Burana (see audio clip), Billy Budd (live performance CD), Christmas at Pops (Boston Pops), and even an impromptu master class rendering of Nessun Dorma, a famed tenor aria (without music for himself or the pianist on YOU TUBE), which was often sung by his singing (and vocal technique) idol, Luciano Pavarotti. It was the joy of Mark’s singing career to sing L’elisir d’amore with him, especially the second act duet (Belcore/Nemorino) in both Japan and Chicago.

Even with signed contracts for years beyond 2003 at the Met, Mark decided that he preferred to teach, rather than to perform. He has always enjoyed and preferred the analysis and achievement of quality vocal sound. So in 1999, Mark began teaching a few singers, and in time through word of mouth, quickly became a trusted teacher. In the February 2007 MET PLAYBILL, Mark was listed as one of 5 Famed Teachers alongside his esteemed colleagues, Marlena, Ruth, Trish, and Bill S. In this playbill, it was quoted that Mark Oswald is a respected teacher... who often teaches singers at the Met.

As a master class instructor, Mark works most often with the Boston University (Opera Institute), and has given seminars with Cincinnati Conservatory (CCM), San Diego State, USC (South Carolina), Brevard Music Center, and the Minnesota Region- Met Auditions. As an adjudicator, Mark has taken part in the Met auditions (Kentucky, Cincinnati, Minnesota, NJ), and judges competitions in Michigan and NYC as well.

Mark is a voice teacher in the Metropolitan Opera’s LYADP Program, where he is frequently recommended by its administration to work with Met soloists, National Council contenders, and other aspiring soloists. He is on the voice faculty of the Manhattan School of Music (MSM), and works from time to time with singers from both the Chicago Lyric YAP, and the Washington Opera YAP. Occasionally singers from Curtis choose to work with him on a full time basis as well.

Mark studied at CCM (Cincinnati – Undergraduate and Graduate – with Andrew White), was a Met Auditions Finals Winner at age 21, (w/ C. Brewer, V. Villaroel, M. Mills, Ning Liang, DJ Gong, Kevin Short), and was also a member of the Met’s LYAPD Program. (See also Met Archives, for more performance/role history).

Mark teaches privately from his Lincoln Center Studio where he works with all levels of aspiring opera singers, from Met soloists and other Professional Singers (see sound clips and quotes/testimonials), to legit Musical Theatre singers as well as Conservatory students. He feels at home working with all voice types.

Mark Oswald, voice teacher