Canadian-Armenian bass-baritone Vartan Gabrielian is a rising young talent whose first season as a member of the Canadian Opera Ensemble Studio included The Hunter in Rusalka, Don Basilio (cover) in Il barbiere di Siviglia and il Re in Aida, the latter production cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Plans for the 2020-2021 season include his debut with the Toronto Symphony as Count Ceprano in Rigoletto with Gustavo Dudamel conducting and COC assignments in Carmen and Katya Kabanova. His Toronto Symphony debut and appearances in the COC’s Parsifal and Le Nozze di Figaro have been rescheduled due to the global pandemic.
His busy 2018/2019 season included his professional Canadian debut with Opéra de Montréal performing the role of Sparafucile (Rigoletto) and undertaking the title role of Sweeney Todd with the Curtis Opera Theatre. He debuted the roles of Leporello and Commendatore in the Opera Philadelphia/Curtis Opera Theatre production of Don Giovanni and continues his long-standing association with the Orchestra of St. Peter by the Sea, as Colline in performances of La Bohème.
Gabrielian is a recipient of awards from numerous organizations including the Metropolitan Opera National Council, Career Bridges Schuyler Foundation, Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation, Gerda Lissner Foundation, George London Foundation, and he was a Grand Finalist in the 2018 COC Ensemble competition. He is a recipient of the prestigious inaugural 2019 Gerda Lissner IVC Award.
A 2018 member of the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program, Gabrielian covered the roles of Bonze (Madame Butterfly) and Leslie Groves (Doctor Atomic) in addition to featured apprentice scenes from Rigoletto and Grapes of Wrath. In prior seasons, he has been featured at the Chautauqua Institute in performances of Ariodante (King), La Bohème (Colline), Rigoletto (Sparafucile), Die Zauberflote (Sarastro) and more.
A graduate of the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music, he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Voice and Master’s Degree of Vocal Performance under the tutelage of Marlena Malas and Armen Boyajian.