Damian Thantrey read law at Clare College, Cambridge and qualified as a lawyer before studying singing at the Royal College of Music with Margaret Kingsley. On leaving the RCM, Damian was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal and held the Mills Williams Junior Fellowship, continuing his studies with Paul Farrington.
Damian’s recent operatic roles have included Deputy Mayor (Roy Fiction) in the Royal Opera House premiere and 2014 revival of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Anna Nicole, Apollo Orfeo Opéra National de Lorraine and Salle Pleyel, Paris, Lun Tha The King and I, Wolf/Cinderella’s Prince Into The Woods, Franz/Lee Sunday in the Park with George, Mr Lindquist A Little Night Music at the Théâtre du Châtelet, English Clerk Death in Venice Opera North, Brother Seven Deadly Sins, Chau Lin A Night at the Chinese Opera and Eisenstein Die Fledermaus for Scottish Opera, Sherasmin Oberon New Sussex Opera and Faiz Babur in London The Opera Group.
He has also sung English Clerk Death in Venice at the Aldeburgh and Bregenz Festivals and at the Opéra de Lyon, the Traveller roles Death in Venice Opéra de Metz, Marullo Rigoletto Royal Opera House, Flemish Deputy Don Carlos WNO, Pastore Orfeo and Messenger Oedipus Rex Opera North, Nardo La Finta Giardiniera and Sadik Der Stein der Weisen Garsington Opera, Count Almaviva Marriage of Figaro Savoy Opera, Onegin Eugene Onegin Blackheath Halls, Ferdinand The Duenna English Touring Opera, Adonis Venus and Adonis La Nuova Musica, Blazes The Lighthouse Psappha/Orkney Festival, Maximillian Candide City of Birmingham Opera, Zurga Les Pecheurs des Perles and The Duke of Rothsay La Jolie Fille de Perth Chelsea Opera Group, Maximillian Candide City of Birmingham Opera, and Baritone 1 The Martyrdom of St. Magnus and Aeneas in a concert performance of Dido & Aeneas at the Oslo Kammermusik Festival.
He is a specialist in contemporary music and has premiered more than thirty new works (including Turnage’s Anna Nicole, the baritone role in Max Richter’s SUM, and Babette’s Feast, all for the Royal Opera House), also performing demanding roles and concert repertoire from the 20th and 21st century canon, in major works by Maxwell Davies, Weir, Adams and Schönberg.
In concert, Damian has performed all the major oratorio works with a wide span of repertoire, from the Bach Passions and Monteverdi Vespers to Orff’s Carmina Burana and Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, in venues such as the Royal Albert Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall and King’s College, Cambridge.
In recital, Damian has performed a variety of work across the UK and in London at the Purcell Room, Wigmore Hall and St John’s, Smith Square. He has performed Winterreise and Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch with Malcolm Martineau and has made a recital tour of Schumann’s Dichterliebe with the pianist Peter Hewitt. Damian has also sung several orchestral song cycles including Mahler’s Songs of a Wayfarer and Kindertotenlieder in two UK tours with Rambert Dance.
He sings cabaret as MD and vocalist with Cabaret Chordelia and has recently co-written (with director Lee Blakeley) a new translation of Handel’s Riccardo Primo, to be performed in 2015 by the Opera Theatre of St Louis.