OFFICIAL BIO: LEARN MORE ABOUT CHRISTIAN
BARITONE CHRISTIAN THURSTON
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New Zealand baritone Christian Thurston is a graduate of the Minnesota Opera Resident Artist Program. He returned to New Zealand for a busy 2021 season, beginning with Opera in the Pa in Rotorua, before performing the title role in Don Giovanni with the Wellington Opera. Following this, he performed Carl Orff's Carmina Burana with the Wellington Orchestra and Orpheus Choir, and again a month later with Hamilton Civic Choir.
In 2022, Christian will be singing the role of 'Billy Bigalow' in the New Zealand Opera's production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra. He finishes the year off singing the title role in Schumann's Faust with Orchestra Wellington in the Michael Fowler Centre
In the 2020 season, Thurston returned to Minnesota Opera to sing the 'Steward' in Flight, and made his Theatre Latté Da debut as 'Marcello' in La Bohème.
In the 2018-19 season he performed the roles of ‘Maggiordomo’ in La Rondine, ‘Gordon’ in Silent Night, ‘Emilio’ in The Italian Straw Hat and ‘the Marquis’ in La Traviata.
In the previous 2017/18 season, he performed the roles of ‘Count Almaviva’ in Le nozze di Figaro, ‘Marullo’ in Rigoletto, and ‘Nicia’s servant’ in Thaïs with The Minnesota Opera.
Christian graduated from the prestigious Manhattan School of Music with a Masters degree after completing his undergraduate and post-graduate certificates at the New Zealand School of Music . At MSM, he performed the roles of ‘Count Homonay’ in Strauss’ Der Zigeunerbaron, ‘Harasta’ in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen, ‘Pandolfe’ in Massenet’s Cendrillon, ‘Azolan’ in Susa’s Les Liaisons dangereuses, and ‘Miller’ in Verdi’s Luisa Miller.
In New Zealand Christian sang the role of the ‘Imperial Commissioner’ in Madama Butterfly and covered ‘Dandini’ in La Cenerentola, both with New Zealand Opera. At the New Zealand School of Music he performed ‘Snug’ in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and ‘Pasha Seid’ in Verdi’s rarely performed Il Corsaro. He has also sung ‘Chichibio’ in Mozart’s rarity L’oca del Cairo and performed ‘Don Polidoro’ in Cimarosa’s L’Italiana in Londra. New Zealand audiences have also seen him in concert as a soloist in Celebrating Lilburn with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Fantasia on Christmas Carols with the Kapiti Orchestra, and performances of Viktor Ullmann’s Der Kaiser von Atlantis and Richard Fuch’s Vom Judischen Schicksal.
Christian Thurston was the third place winner in the Lexus Song Quest with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. In 2016 Christian was a Connecticut district finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and received the Guida-LaCamera Award. He was a winner of the Alan M. and Joan Taub Ades Vocal Competition at MSM in 2017, and was a Dame Malvina Major New Zealand Opera Emerging Artist in 2014 and 2015.