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NEWS & PRESS

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NEWS

DECEMBER 2020

2020/21 SEASON ANNOUNCED

John's 2020/2021 season brings major house debuts for the rising young tenor. Season highlights include a return to Pensacola Opera for Ralph Rackstraw in HMS Pinafore, along with debuts with the Utah Opera in Pirates of Penzance as Frederic and with the Berkshire Opera Festival in Glory Denied as Younger Thompson. This season also features concerts with Gulfshore Opera, and his Carnegie Hall debut as tenor soloist in Handel's Messiah. He will also continue his collaboration with Emmy-nominated PBS TV classical-crossover pianist Marina Arsenijevic, and be releasing new studio recordings to all streaming services.

PRESS

JANUARY 2020

"John Riesen as the Younger Jim went the distance to portray the fear, humiliation, and pain of the soldier’s harrowing nine-year ordeal. Opera is a great medium for showing people in emotional extremis, and Riesen knows how to deliver vocally that kind of tenor heartbreak."

- DC Theater Scene

- DC Theatre Scene

"Tenor John Riesen as the younger Jim Thompson, easily goes from the lyricism of a father who hung onto the mail from his family in his pocket when he was captured, including a misshapen paper star cut out by one of his children, to the dark tonelessness of a man kept in a tiger cage who creates the blueprint of a house in his mind to try to stay sane"

- Broadway World

"John Riesen’s substantial tenor remains strong through all the scenes in which he appears as Younger Thompson: from being kicked on the ground by his jailer to seeing the jungle for the first time at the end of the war with wonder and joy. . . "

- DC Metro Theater Arts

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PRESS

NOVEMBER 2019

" Tenor John Riesen’s short, colorful appearance as Pirelli was both musically and dramatically satisfying..."

- Opera News

- DC Theatre Scene

"Other characters are utterly remarkable here, such as John Riesen’s Pirelli, at turns bright and funny and downright sinister, with a stunning tenor."

- Encore Michigan

PRESS

JUNE 2019

"As the pensive Prince Charming, John Riesen scored his finest impressions in his sensitive soft singing... In their Big Duet Ohse and Riesen gave the grateful audience the Big Operatic Gift of thrilling all­out climaxes. It was the stuff of fairy tales." 

- Addison County Independant

- DC Theatre Scene

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PRESS

APRIL 2019

"John Riesen has opera's Emotional Boy, Alfredo, firmly in hand. He is desperately in love and his heart is on his sleeve for the entire opera. Riesen and Valdes partner beautifully, and Riesen is note-perfect and powerful in his solos, an impressive tenor with dramatics to match. He gains power as the performance continues until his icy public confrontation with his lost love at her friend's soirée."

- Naples Daily News

- DC Theatre Scene

PRESS

NOVEMBER 2018

"John Riesen’s 'Younger Thompson' held the stage with a vibrant, focused tenor, and an impassioned performance of complete commitment and coltish deportment. Mr. Riesen bolted about the stage, flailed at his captors’ abuse, repeatedly flung himself on the floor, and managed to do all of this while singing with secure abandon."

- Opera Today

- DC Theatre Scene

"Younger Thompson, the prisoner of war, was a physically grueling role, and John Riesen portrayed the character with heartfelt sincerity..."

- Schmopera

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