Richard Estes

Richard Estes made his New York debut as Jean Baptiste in a Carnegie Hall performance of Massenet’s HERODIADE and the following night appeared in a world premiere opera at the Juilliard School. He has sung leading roles with The Houston Grand Opera, New York Grand Opera, and the operas of Honolulu, Atlanta, Cleveland, Columbus, Minnesota, Baltimore and a score of others.

Praise for his work has been published in The New York Times, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Cleveland Plain-Dealer, Baltimore Sun, Washington Post, Opera News, Opera Magazine (UK), and Musical America. His broadcasts have included PBS, NPR, and the BBC.

Mr. Estes has directed, presented master classes, and given workshops in Mexico, Colombia, Italy, Belarus and the USA. He is the founder and director of the TCU/Fort Worth Opera Institute, an intensive training program for young artists preparing to engage in the professional audition circuit. The Institute takes place during the Fort Worth Opera’s 4-week Repertory Season. The participating young singers receive daily coaching in audition repertoire, acting and movement training, and master classes by the visiting artists, conductors, directors and artistic administration of the Fort Worth Opera.

Mr. Estes credits his work with Wesley Balk at Juilliard and the Minnesota Opera and with David Ostwald at Western Opera Theatre for the development of his own approach to teaching acting to singers. He is sympathetic to the experiences of the singer and delighted by the talent he sees in the next generation of opera singers. One student in his Opera Institute classes recently commented: “I just love Mr. Estes’s ability to demystify even the most complicated topic.” Another said, “I personally enjoyed reviewing my arias with Mr. Estes who is an amazing coach.”

Richard Estes is a member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA), American Guild of Music Artists (AGMA), National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), and Opera America.

Die Flederamaus Tosca
As Alfred in DIE FLEDERMAUS with Melanie Helton
As Cavaradossi in TOSCA


“Handsome of visage and voice, Estes is the premiere tenor of this or any other season…His is a Pinkerton to be savored in its progress from brash infatuation to bewildered anguish, all delivered with convincing stage presence and a splendidly clear voice that displays some breathtaking phrasing. Encore, Estes”
The Honolulu Advertiser

“Richard Estes dominated in the title role. His attractive voice was ample…and his presence captured the tragic character of Hoffmann convincingly.”
Musical America

“Richard Estes is making his debut, and he’s off to a stellar start, showing highly polished skills as actor and singer. His tenor comes across with unusual power in the lower register and good authority throughout. [He] showed his all in his poignant third act aria, ‘e lucevan le stelle.’”
The Charlotte Observer

“The loudest tumult and longest applause went to tenor Richard Estes. His depiction of the artist, Mario Cavaradossi, was certainly among the best heard locally in at least thirty years, and compared favorably with the best recordings.”
The Post, Rochester, NY

“Tenor Richard Estes made a remarkable Alfredo: not only does he retain a deep quality in a full tenor range, but he conveyed the infatuation of a young man in love.” Opera News “Musically the high point of the opera is, as it should be, the duet between the girl and her human lover…Richard Estes sang the human lover in a well-focused tenor, all of it placed securely in the throat.”
Opera, London

“Richard Estes was ideal in the role of Alfredo, the wandering tenor who is desperately in love with Rosalinda. He performed the role with Viennese dash, and his voice had a pleasing lyric quality.”
The Evening Sun, Baltimore

“Estes has a particularly strong voice matched with fine acting abilities.”
The Washington Star