David Soar


David Soar was born in Nottinghamshire and studied at the Royal Academy of Music and the National Opera Studio.

Highlights in his 2015/16 season include Seneca L’incoronazione di Poppea (Academy of Ancient Music/Egarr), First Nazarene Salome (Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra/Karabits), Handel's Messiah (Royal Northern Sinfonia/Bicket), Frère Laurent Roméo et Juliette (BBC Symphony Orchestra/Sir Andrew Davis), Haydn's Die sieben letzte Worte (Orchestre des Champs Elysées/Herreweghe),  the title role in Handel's Saul (BBC Singers) and Peter Quice A  Midsummer Night's Dream (Glyndebourne).

His future engagements also include débuts for the Teatro Réal in Madrid and for Garsington Opera, and returns to the Metropolitan Opera, the English National Opera and to Covent Garden.

He has sung Colline La bohème and Masetto Don Giovanni (Metropolitan Opera); Escamillo Carmen, Masetto, Mr Flint Billy Budd and Collatinus The Rape of Lucretia (Glyndebourne); Le Duc Roméo et Juliette (Salzburg Festival); Quinault Adriana Lecouvreur (Covent Garden); Nilakantha Lakmé (Opera Holland Park); Basilio The Barber of Seville, Roy Disney The Perfect American and Bernardino Benvenuto Cellini (English National Opera) and Leporello Don Giovanni, Figaro Le nozze di Figaro, Escamillo and Sparafucile Rigoletto (Welsh National Opera).

Highlights on the concert platform include The Dream of Gerontius (BBC Symphony Orchestra/Sir Andrew Davis), Messiah (The English Concert/Bicket, Academy of Ancient Music/Egarr & Britten Sinfonia/Hill), Stravinsky motets (Collegium Vocale/Herreweghe), Weill's The Seven Deadly Sins (Hallé Orchestra/Elder), Belshazzar’s Feast (BBC Philharmonic Orchestra/Storgårds), The Midsummer Marriage at the BBC Proms (BBC Symphony Orchestra/Sir Andrew Davis), Wozzeck (Philharmonia//Salonen), Masetto Don Giovanni (SCO/Ticciati) and Beethoven's Symphony no. 9 (Mackerras).

This is for information only. Please contact Camilla Wehmeyer for an up-to-date biography.

Read More >

News & Features



Mass in B Minor
Matthäus Passion
Ich habe genug

Symphony no. 9
Missa Solemnis

Ein Deutsches Requiem

Te Deum

The Dream of Gerontius
The Apostles (Judas)

Saul (title role)

Die Schöpfung
Die sieben letzte Worte

Symphony no. 8

Elijah (title role)


Petite Messe Solennelle
Stabat Mater

A Survivor from Warsaw
Ode to Napoleon

Songs of the Fleet
Stabat Mater


Belshazzar's Feast


Wozzeck (1st Workman/Doctor)

Roméo et Juliette (Frère Laurent)

Carmen (Escamillo)

Billy Budd (Mr Flint)
The Rape of Lucretia (Collatinus)

Lucrezia Borgia (Alfonso)

L'incoronazione di Poppea (Seneca)

La clemenza di Tito (Publio)
Don Giovanni (Leporello)
Le nozze di Figaro (Figaro)
Die Zauberflöte (Sarastro)

La Gioconda (Alvise Badoero)

La bohème (Colline)
Madam Butterfly (Bonze)

The Fairy Queen (Hymen/Sleep/Coridon/Winter )

Il barbiere di Siviglia (Don Basilio)

La Cenerentola (Alidoro)

Salome (First Nazarene)

Eugene Onegin (Zaretsky)

The Midsummer Marriage (He-Ancient)

Don Carlo (Monk)
La traviata (Grenvil)
Il Trovatore (Ferrando)
Macbeth (Banco)
Aida (Il Re)

Das Liebesverbot (Friedrich)
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Nightwatchman)
Tristan und Isolde (Marke)

Seven Deadly Sins (Mother)

Read More >

Media Player



Load More



Das Liebesverbot

Chelsea Opera Group

As Friedrich, who makes a relatively late appearance, Soar held the stage with good diction and a wide palette of colours. Alexander Campbell, Classical Source, 25 October 2015
In the most important male role, that of Friedrich, David Soar revealed a sinister stentorian bass but he was also alive to the opportunities given him towards the end of Act II scene 2, where the music moves into the minor mode and his vulnerability as a prisoner of his own hormones is exposed. Alexander Hall, Bachtrack, 26 October 2015
I only became really interested once David Soar’s Friedrich came into the ‘action’. He – a bass – was quite superb, singing with an assertive gravitas but always keenly aware of his character’s sense of inner turmoil over his public and private convictions/conflictions. Wagner gives him a ruminative aria in Act II Scene 2 which he clearly remembered when composing the role of the Dutchman in Der fliegende Holländer a few years later. Jim Pritchard, Seen and Heard, 26 October 2015



Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra/Kirill Karabits

In the smaller roles there was some superb singing notably from David Soar’s charismatic First Nazarene. Alexander Campbell, Classical Source, 02 October 2015



Opera Holland Park

That splendid bass David Soar was granitically imposing as the implacable high priest [Nikalantha]. Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 10 July 2015
...a name to watch out for [is] David Soar, a known quantity and the real bass article as Nilakantha. David Nice, The Arts Desk, 10 July 2015
[David Soar] asserts his bass to stunning effect and his enunciation is impeccable. Sam Smith, MusicOMH, 12 July 2015
...David Soar’s ringing bass... Martin Kettle, The Guardian, 10 July 2015
Fresh from bull-fighting duties as Escamillo at Glyndebourne, David Soar again impressed with his sturdy bass and fine diction as the zealous Nilakantha. Mark Pullinger, Bachtrack, 10 July 2015
David Soar gives Nilakantha grit and determination while also managing to combine more than a hint of fanaticism with a degree of sympathy for his diminished status under British rule. George Hall, The Stage, 10 July 2015
David Soar was solid as Nilakantha [and] grew in stature through Act 2 and his solemn delivery, together with the magisterial richness and dark colours of his attractive bass, suggested both menace and authority. Claire Seymour, Opera Today, 14 July 2015
Dramatic energy comes from David Soar as the priest Nilakantha, whose role is to issue periodic calls for vengeance.  Richard Fairman, Financial Times, 12 July 2015
Stentorian bass notes distinguish Lakmé’s priestly father Nilakantha, sung by David Soar. Geoff Brown, The Spectator, 18 July 2015
Bass David Soar is a dominating Nilakantha. Clare Colvin, Express, 19 July 2015
Lakmé's vengeful father Nilakantha cast a long shadow in David Soar's baleful performance, his magnificent bass reshaping boo-hiss villainy into something more three-dimensional. Peter Reed, Opera, September 2015



Glyndebourne Festival Opera

Bizet's conception of the toreador Escamillo, for instance, is something that few opera houses today seem able to equal: they find a baritone with either the top notes or the lower register, but here David Soar supplies both and sings with dashing restraint. It's quite refreshing to encounter an Escamillo like this. John Allison, The Telegraph, 24 May 2015
David Soar brings convincing swagger to Escamillo. Hugo Shirley, Financial Times, 26 May 2015
David Soar finds all the notes for the wide range required of toreador Escamillo, and exudes macho self-confidence. George Hall, The Guardian, 24 May, 2015
David Soar is a credibly heroic Escamillo. Edward Bhesania, The Stage, 26 May 2015
A toast, too, to another home-grown soloist, David Soar...the young bass's star is very much in the ascendant just now, and here he exudes panache both as a swaggering character and as an accomplished singing actor.
Mark Valencia, What's on Stage, 25 May 2015
...the other standout was David Soar’s excellent Escamillo, bass notes secure, charisma set to full-swagger. Mark Pullinger, Bachtrack, 24 May 2015
With rich-toned bass David Soar as a swaggering Escamillo, and silvery soprano Lucy Crowe as a sweetly resolute Micaela, determined to save her fiancé from the gypsy’s clutches, it’s as good a cast as you could wish for. Clare Colvin, Express, 31 May 2015
David Soar was a thrilling Escamillo, bold of presence and singing every note, high or low, with full and fleshy tone - which is rarely something one can take for granted; his macho self-confidence provided an ideal contrast with José's visible sense of inadequacy. George Hall, Opera, August 2015


Belshazzar’s Feast

BBC Philharmonic Orchestra/John Storgårds

...soloist David Soar revealed a dark, resonant timbre that possessed an alarming menace. At times Soar’s voice reminded me of Benjamin Luxon... Michael Cookson, Seen and Heard, 12 November 2014


The Dream of Gerontius

BBC Symphony Orchestra/Sir Andrew Davis (Chandos CD, 2014)

David Soar's Priest is commanding in Proficiscere, anima Christiania. Hugh Canning, Sunday Times, 19 October 2014
The Priest and the Angel of the Agony have occasionally been assigned to different singers in performances of The Dream of Gerontius, but tradition has mostly followed the example of the Birmingham première. In this recording, both parts are sung by Nottinghamshire-born bass David Soar, who débuted at the Metropolitan Opera as Masetto in Don Giovanni and returned to New York in September 2014 to sing Colline in La bohème. As the Priest in Part One of The Dream of Gerontius, Mr. Soar’s sonorous singing of ‘Proficiscere, anima Christiana, de hoc mundo’ is keenly reflective, his enunciation of the Latin text sensitive but pointed. The Angel of the Agony’s ‘Jesu! by that shuddering dread which fell on Thee’ in Part Two draws from Mr. Soar robustly muscular singing. Mr. Soar’s tonal production is smoother than John Shirley-Quirk’s, and his timbre is lighter than Gwynne Howell’s, but his singing in this performance combines aspects of the former’s incisive utilization of text and uncompromising solemnity of declamation with the latter’s vocal opulence. He is memorable as both the Priest and the Angel of the Agony, brief as their interjections are, but even his dramatic persuasiveness is secondary to the attractiveness of his singing.
Joseph Newsome, Voix des Arts, 27 October 2014
David Soar, too, sings with lofty projection and unstinting eloquence (his Angel of the Agony is an especially pleasing achievement). Andrew Achenbach, Gramophone, November 2015
Bass David Soar is unwaveringly authoritative as both Priest and Angel of the Agony, making a stirring compassionate contribution.  In 'Proficiscere, anima Christiana' he manages to avoid pomposity while enlivening the sound, an effect sustained and intensified when the choir joins in force at 'Go, in the name of Angels'.  This Gerontius is a wonderful achievement, a deeply considered interpretation whose convincing spirituality never seems stuffy or over-reverential.  It takes an honoured place among the finest-ever versions of this much-recorded masterpiece, and would unquestionably be my preferred digital version. Terry Blain, BBC Music Mazagine, December 2014 (Recording of the Month)
The composer favoured a real bass over a baritone and David Soar would surely have been his ideal choice.  Intelligent singing allows him to express the Angel of the Agony's dubious sentiments very convincingly, and the beauty of the voice is a real asset both there and as the Priest at the end of Part 1.  (I'd be happy enough to be carried off into oblivion by singing such as this.) William Hedley, International Record Review, November 2014


La bohème

Metropolitan Opera, New York

Colline was sung very well by David Soar, whose aria 'Vecchia zimarra senti' brought tears to the eyes. David Browning, Bachtrack, 25 September 2014
...the bass David Soar a confident Colline, mellow and unpretentious in his fourth-act aria, 'Vecchia zimarra.' Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, 25 September 2014



Chelsea Opera Group at the Queen Elizabeth Hall

David Soar displayed a pure beautiful bass of remarkable quality, and he made much of the words. Andrew Porter, Opera, August 2014


The Dream of Gerontius

BBC Symphony Orchestra/Sir Andrew Davis

David Soar as an implacable, dark-sounding Priest and Angel of the Agony, and Sarah Connolly as a consummately polished Angel completed the outstanding set of soloists.  Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 08 April 2014
David Soar’s Priest had just the right smooth, blackish tone and hieratic presence... John Allison, The Telegraph, 07 April 2014
David Soar completed the sense of definition and connection with his focused, consistently even solos as Priest and Angel of the Agony, both thrillingly sung and succinctly dramatic. Peter Reed, Classical Source, 06 April 2014


The Rape of Lucretia

Glyndebourne on Tour

David Soar’s Collatinus [was] almost too beautifully sung to chime with Britten’s ambivalent portrayal. Alexandra Coghlan, The New Statesman, 21 October 2013
[Fiona] Shaw's soldiers splendidly transcend the effeteness of their lines...Duncan Rock's Tarquinius, and David Soar's Collatinus are entirely believable as they banter in their bivouac... Michael Church, The Independent, 21 October 2013
[Fiona Shaw] depicts Collatinus as an oblivious cuckold yet David Soar makes him three-dimensional and dignified. Mark Valencia, What's on Stage, 20 October 2013
David Soar’s rock-solid Collatinus. David Nice, The Art's Desk, 20 October 2013
[Fiona] Shaw draws magnificent performances from a mostly young cast. The men are just about ideal: Duncan Rock as the gym-buffed Tarquinius, David Soar as the decent Collatinus. Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 21 October 2013
Collatinus [is] the sinuous bass David Soar. Stephen Pritchard, The Observer, 27 October 2013
All the singing is top quality, with strapping great voices from David Soar (Collatinus) and Duncan Rock, impressive as Tarquinius. Rosenna East, The Big Issue, 22 October 2013
Particular praise though, for David Soar's warm-voiced, poignant Collatinus [and] for Duncan Rock's brutal, physically imposing, vocally uncompromising Tarquinius. Roger Parker, Opera, December 2013


The Barber of Seville

English National Opera

For me, the best of the supporting singers was David Soar as the hypocritical Don Basilio, who only gets one big aria (his entrance aria, a paean to the power of calumny) and sang it with power, flexibility and comic relish.

David Karlin, Bachtrack, 26 February 2013

The evening's finest performances come from David Soar as Basilio, who never puts a comic foot wrong and makes a real highlight of his slander aria, and from Andrew Shore, returning to his familiar role of Dr Bartolo.

George Hall, The Guardian, 27 February 2013


Don Giovanni

Metropolitan Opera, New York

David Soar made an impressive Met debut as Masetto, his voice attractive and even in all registers and his enunciation excellent.
Classical Review, December 2012


The Fairy Queen

Glyndebourne Festival Opera

David Soar’s delivery of Winter’s aria has magnificent resonance.
The Independent, July 2012
Among the singers, David Soar’s bass is a properly chilling Winter and a Merlin-like figure whose Hush, no more conjures resonant and dark silences. The Times, July 2012


Le nozze di Figaro

Welsh National Opera

The Figaro of this production is David Soar, and he returns to the role with complete assuredness, panache and captivating physicality. He leaps, pirouettes, postures and limps when required, with conviction, bravado and humour. His Italian has a sparkling command and Soar’s rich vocal reserves ensure that he can create a gamut of emotions within well managed Mozartian phrasing. This is a role he deserves to perform frequently and at important houses, as he has an intelligent sense of Figaro’s public and private character, his frustrations and his sense of worth within the class system of the time. Soar’s Figaro hints at the Beaumarchais ideology, but always with beauty of tone and musicality. This is an accomplished, exciting portrayal.
Opera Brittania, March 2012


Don Giovanni

Welsh National Opera

...despite the dark undertones of rape and murder, WNO have excelled in bringing the comic energy of this popular two-act drama to life without descending into pantomime farce. David Soar can take much of the credit for this, playing the charmingly convincing Leporello, Giovanni’s hard-done-by servant.
The Stage, September 2011
It was therefore something of a relief to encounter Welsh National Opera’s handsomely designed, no-nonsense traditional new staging in Cardiff, which is well worth seeing for the two brilliant stand-out performances from David Soar and Camilla Roberts alone.
Opera Britannia, September 2011
David Soar was a fine Leporello, the partnership wholly plausible, Leporello’s confusions and economic needs were equally well articulated. The dialogue between Leporello and his master was, musically and dramatically, an example of what management science calls best practice. It isn’t hard to imagine Soar himself as a top class Don Giovanni in due course.
Seen and Heard Opera Review, September 2011
David Soar is excellent in the buffo role of Giovanni’s servant Leporello.
Coventry Telegraph, November 2011




Winner, Best Choral Recording (BBC Music Magazine & Gramophone Magazine)

Sarah Connolly (mezzo-soprano)
Stuart Skelton (tenor)
David Soar (bass)

BBC Symphony Orchestra / Sir Andrew Davis

Cilea: Adriana Lecouvreur

Angela Gheorghiu (Adriana)
Jonas Kaufmann (Maurizio)
Olga Borodina (La principessa di Bouillon)
Alessandro Corbelli (Michonnet)
David Soar (Quinault)
Iain Paton (Poisson
Janis Kelly (Mademoiselle Jouvenot)
Sarah Castle (Mademoiselle Dangeville)
Maurizio Muraro (Principe di Bouillon)
Bonaventura Bottone (Abbé de Chazeuil)

Orchestra of the Royal Opera House / Sir Mark Elder

David McVicar's production filmed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden


Hidden Treasure

A Recital by David Soar

Featuring songs by Armstrong Gibbs, Schubert, Mozart, Purcell and Keel

James Southall, piano