John Riesen


Hailed as “every inch the hero in stature and voice” (Classical Voice North America), award-winning American tenor John Riesen is consistently impressing audiences with his “impassioned…and vibrant” voice (Opera Today). John’s growing career boasts a variety of roles in which he excels and includes significant work in opera, musical theatre, studio recording, and concert. He has released two albums: What You’d Call a Dream (2019) and Christmas at Home (2020) and several singles, including “Autumn Leaves” (2021), “What a Wonderful World” (2021), and “Maria” (from West Side Story, 2021), that have reached well over one million streams on Spotify and Apple Music. John is also the head of Spotify promotion and PR for Emitha LLC, building an ecosystem for classical singers to be heard around the world.

Last season was a busy one for John and included his role début as Camille in The Merry Widow at Knoxville Opera, where he also reprised his Younger Thompson in Glory Denied. He made his role début as the Duke in Rigoletto at Intermountain Opera Bozeman, appeared with Opera Las Vegas as Detective Daniel Lewis in A Capacity for Evil, and brought his Younger Thompson to Opera Roanoke. Additionally, he was named a semifinalist on NBC’s America’s Got Talent. Engagements for this season include joining the Dallas Symphony for their concert Prohibition, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Southwest Michigan Symphony and Pacific Symphony, Carmina Burana with Sinfonica Costa Rica, the Choral Society of Pensacola, and Flint Symphony Orchestra, a holiday Pops concert with the Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra, Alfred in Die Fledermaus with Pensacola Opera, and his return to Intermountain Opera Bozeman as Rodolfo in La bohème.

In recent seasons, John appeared as Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance with Utah Opera, Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi with On Site Opera, Chris in the world-premiere of Favorite Son by Grammy Award-winning songwriter Marcus Hummons, Ralph Rackstraw in HMS Pinafore with Pensacola Opera, Martin in The Tender Land with The Hart School, Alfredo in La Traviata with the Pacific Symphony, and Younger Thompson with Berkshire Opera Festival.

Other career highlights include his début as Roméo in Roméo et Juliette as a guest artist with the Janiec Opera Company at Brevard Music Center, his Michigan Opera Theater début as Pirelli in Sweeney Todd, Younger Thompson in Glory Denied with UrbanArias, and Bill Calhoun in Kiss Me, Kate with Intermountain Opera Bozeman. He also made several role débuts including Prince Charming in Cendrillon with Opera Company of Middlebury, Lensky in Eugene Onegin with Intermountain Opera Bozeman, Alfredo in La Traviata with Gulfshore Opera, Younger Thomspon in Glory Denied with Opera Birmingham and Des Moines Metro Opera, the title role in Candide with Chautauqua Opera, and his Lincoln Center début as Tony in West Side Story Suite with the New York City Ballet.