RANDALL UMSTEAD, tenor, has performed widely in both operatic roles and in concert music. He has performed the title role in Britten's Albert Herring, the Doctor in Dominick Argento's The Voyage of Edgar Allan Poe, the Lecturer in Argento's one-man monodrama A Water Bird Talk, as well as Lurcanio in Handel's Ariodante, all at the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. He was twice a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center. During his first fellowship, he performed multiple roles in Ravel's L'Enfant et les Sortilèges with conductor Robert Spano. He also was selected to participate in the Tanglewood Bach Institute, directed by Craig Smith. During his second fellowship, he returned to Tanglewood to appear as the title character in Stravinsky's Mavra, under the direction of James Levine. Opera News praised this performance, calling him, "impressive as the soldier/Mavra, with exemplary diction and a strong, bright sound." The Hartford Courant said of this performance, “Lyric tenor Randall Umstead, playing the charismatic Vasily…stole the show. His voice has colors beyond his age, and acting enhanced his fit with this character.”
In a concert setting, Mr. Umstead has recently sung the role of the Evangelist in Bach's St. John Passion and St. Matthew Passion, as well as in the Bach/Handel/Kaiser St. Mark Passion (1747) with Bach Society Houston. Other highlights include an appearance with bass-baritone Simon Estes, soprano Bronwen Forbay, and the Johannesburg Festival Orchestra as a soloist in Haydn's Creation at the National Arts Festival of South Africa. Mr. Umstead has an extensive concert repertoire, including Bach’s Mass in b minor, Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 and Mass in C, Carissimi's Jepthe, Handel's Messiah and Dixit Dominus, Monteverdi's Vespro della Beata Vergine, Mozart's Mass in C minor and Requiem, Haydn's Missa in tempora belli, Rossini's Stabat Mater, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Vaughan Williams' The Shepherds of the Delectable Mountains. He has performed as a soloist with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Flagstaff Symphony, Colorado Bach Ensemble, Cincinnati Baroque Orchestra, CCM Philharmonia, Catacoustic Consort, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, the Kwazulu-Natal (South Africa) Philharmonic Orchestra, the Irving Symphony, the Valley Symphony Orchestra, and the Bach Society of Dayton.
Mr. Umstead was a quarterfinalist in the 2010 International Vocal Competition 's-Hertogenbosch, a member of the World Federation of International Music Competitions, and in 2008 was a finalist in the American Bach Society's 5th Biennial Vocal Competition. Randall is active as a recitalist and has taught masterclasses throughout the United States and in South Africa.
Mr. Umstead currently holds the Charles W. Evans Chair in Voice at Baylor University, where he serves as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Voice in the School of Music. He also serves as Chair of the Baylor University Faculty Senate. Dr. Umstead holds both the Doctor of Musical Arts and the Master of Music degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, as well as the Bachelor of Music degree in voice from Oklahoma Baptist University. Randall’s students have been winners, finalists and semifinalists in both chapter and regional NATS (National Association of Teachers of Singing) student auditions, and in 2009 he was selected for the NATS Intern Program. Dr. Umstead current serves as Texoma Region Governor for NATS, and is a member of the NATS Board of Directors.