Mr. Scholten was a young artist in the Ryan Opera Center at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in 2010, 2011, and 2012. While at the Lyric, he was seen in a number of roles including Normanno in Lucia di Lammermoor, Zweiter Priester in Die Zauberflöte, Der Perückenmacher in Ariadne auf Naxos, Dancaïro in Carmen, Starveling in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Happy in Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West. Other performances, while a member of the Ryan Center, included Dandini in highlights from Rossini’s La Cenerentola in a concert performance with the Grant Park Music Festival, Don Alfonso in Così Fan Tutte, and Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola. Mr. Scholten was also young artist in the San Francisco 2009 Opera Merola Opera Program where he covered the role of David in Mascagni’s L’Amico Fritz, and performed scenes from La Bohème and Il barbiere di Siviglia as part of Merola’s Schwabacher Summer Concert and Merola Grand Finale. He was a fellow of the Tanglewood Music Center in 2005, 2006 and 2007, where he sang the role of Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte conducted by Maestro James Levine, and took part in a variety of performances including Samuel Barber’s Dover Beach, Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas with the Mark Morris Dance Group, and numerous art song recitals. Other notable roles for Mr. Scholten include Tarquinius in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia, Zurga in Bizet’s Les Pêcheurs des Perles, Schaunard in La Bohème, Krušina in Smetana’s The Bartered Bride, and Le Directeur in Poulenc’s Les Mamelles de Tirésias. When Mr. Scholten performed the role of Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, the Cincinnati Enquirer hailed him as, “The scene-stealer … A fusty old crank re-conceived by Miller as a full blown obsessive-compulsive, he was brought vividly to life by Scholten, whose rapid ‘patter aria’ facility was the most impressive of the show.”
Mr. Scholten’s success also extends to the concert stage, where he has been the soloist in Bach’s B Minor Mass with the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music; soloist in Handel’s Messiah and Haydn’s Creation Mass with Musica Sacra in Cincinnati; and soloist in Bruckner’s Te Deum with the Berkshire Choral Festival. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2010 under the auspices of The Marilyn Horne Foundation’s The Song Continues Festival, where he sang for Maestro James Levine in a public master class of art song. Mr. Scholten was a national semi-finalist in the 2012 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and second place winner of the 2012 National Orpheus Vocal Competition. He is the first place winner of the American Opera Society Competition, as well as the first place winner of the Irma M. Cooper International Opera Columbus Vocal Competition (junior division), the first place winner of the University of Michigan Friends of Opera Scholarship Competition, the third place winner of The Florida Grand Opera/Young Patronesses of the Opera National Vocal Competition and the third place winner of the 39th Annual William C. Byrd Young Artist Competition.
Mr. Scholten received his master of music degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and his bachelor of music degree with highest honors from The University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance. He is a native of Muskegon, Michigan.
American baritone Paul Scholten has been hailed as “an excellent baritone with notable intelligence and trenchant musicality” (Opera News). During the 2014-15 season Mr. Scholten made two notable role debuts: the title role of Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Kent Singers of Connecticut, and the role of MacDuff in Ernest Bloch’s Macbeth with Chicago Opera Theatre. He will make his company debut with the Cincinnati Opera in their upcoming 2015 production of Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, and return to DuPage Opera to perform Guglielmo in their 2016 production of Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte.
Recent season highlights for Mr. Scholten include his Fort Worth Opera Festival debut in the role of Guglielmo in Mozart’s Così Fan tutte, the title role in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin with Opera Company of Middlebury, Sharpless in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly with Dupage Opera, and Baburov in Shostakovich’s Moscow Cheryomushki with Chicago Opera Theater. He also created the role of the General in a Metropolitan Opera Workshop of Scott Wheeler’s The Sorrows of Frederick. On the concert stage, Mr. Scholten was the baritone soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the Apollo Orchestra and Chorus, and performed Der Vater in Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel with the Macon Symphony Orchestra.
National Semi-Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions - 2012
Second Place in the National Orpheus Vocal Competition - 2012
First Place in the American Opera Society Vocal Competition - 2012
First Place in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Central Region - 2011
First Place in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Illinois District - 2011
Third Place Winner in the 39th Annual William C. Byrd Young Artist Competition - 2010
Third Place Winner in the Florida Grand Opera/Young Patronesses of the Opera National Vocal Competition - 2009
Third Place Winner in the Orpheus Vocal Competition - 2009
First Place Winner in the Irma M. Cooper Opera Columbus International Vocal Competition - 2008
First Place Winner in the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Sam Adams Award for Excellent Opera Characterization - 2008 & 2009
Scholarship Winner of the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Emilie Dieterle Scholarship - 2007
The Albert A. Stanley Medal for Excellence in Music from the University of Michigan School of Music - 2007
First Place Winner in the University of Michigan Friends of Opera Scholarship Competition - 2006