John Darrenkamp's rich bass voice and penetrating stage presence as well as his far-reaching experience and knowledge are abundantly evident whether he is performing or directing. A native Lancastrian, he was at one time a leading artist with the Metropolitan Opera and has also sung with huge success in opera companies throughout the United States, including Opera Lancaster.
Mr. Darrenkamp's extensive operatic background, combined with his unique talent and remarkable acting ability, now enable him to direct operas that reflect the caliber of his own opera experience and excellence throughout his career. His operatic career began in 1957 with his vocal studies with Frederick Robinson and performances with the Lancaster Opera Workshop. He went on to further his musical training at the famous Philadelphia Academy of Vocal Arts. Early in his career he made frequent appearances in concert at a number of recitals and colleges in the Pennsylvania area including Bryn Mawr and Franklin and Marshall College.
Now retired from the Met, John teaches voice at the Pennsylvania Academy of Music, and he can be seen performing as a soloist in a variety of events in the area throughout the year. He also lends his considerable knowledge and artistic expertise to Opera Lancaster by serving on its Board of Governors.
For the past several years Mr. Darrenkamp has directed significant opera productions for Opera Lancaster. Most recently he directed the critically acclaimed I Pagliacci in the fall of 2008, followed that success with another favorite, also extremely successful, Cavalleria Rusticana and most recently La Boheme which was performed to 4 out of 5 sold out houses in March 2010.
Opera Lancaster is delighted to once again be able to present a John Darrenkamp directed opera, in which a talented cast and John's high performance standards and artistic interpretations combine to give another true reflection of the high-caliber productions for which Opera Lancaster has become known.