Artist's website: www.robertbalonek.com
Praised by the NY Times as having a “Commanding, steely baritone and a direct, crystal-clear delivery” and by the Winston-Salem journal, “Balonek, who might well be the most acrobatic opera singer I have ever seen. His antics are dazzling, and his voice is, too.” Robert is extremely versatile in his acting, dancing, and singing as he has performed everything from bass-baritone Oratorio work such as the Haydn Creation Mass, the revival of the Oratorio di San Francesco (Ariani), to lyric baritone roles such as Silvio (Pagliacci) and Figaro (Barber of Seville) throughout the US.
Robert has been the part of many new collaborations, NY Premieres, and world premieres including the composers; Lee Hoiby, Gerald Cohen, Mohammed Fairouz, Victor Herbert, Richard Wargo, M. Zachary Johnson, Stephanie DeKenessy, Rapheal Lucas, and Seymour Barab.
Robert has recorded the role of Prospero in Lee Hoiby’s Tempest as well as Father Francis in Lucas Said’s Confession for Albany Records. He has also won awards for Opera Index, Liederkranz, Metropolitan Opera National Council, Career Bridges, and the John Moriarty award at Central City Opera.
In April 2015, Robert was in a motorcycle accident breaking 10 ribs, his shoulder, and a punctured lung. At the time, it seemed that performing may no longer be an option. Later that year, he went on to sing Guglielmo (NY Opera CoOperative), Figaro (Opera on the James), and Shaunard (SD Symphony Orchestra). Since then, he has performed over 25 roles.
In 2019, Robert performs the title roles of Owen Wingrave (Brittan), Gianni Schicchi (Puccini), Saul (Handel), as well as Schaunard (Puccini's Boheme), Colline (Leoncavallo's Boheme), Il Boscaiolo (La Bella Addormentata nel Bosco), Father Francis (Confession), and the bass soloist in the Bach Christmas Oratorio.
“The lead role, really, is Blondel, here the hearty baritone Robert Balonek, who was endearing…All in all, a timely revival for a gem of an opera.”