American bass-baritone Robert McNichols Jr. has been making a name for himself as an “artist worthy of being noticed” (The Kansas City Star, 2010). He began the 2017 season as the Emcee for Opera Theatre of St. Louis’ community concert tour “Opera Tastings”. Upcoming performances for Mr. McNichols include the Narrator for “The Lincoln Portraits” with the St. Louis Symphony, Zuniga in “Carmen” with Winter Opera St. Louis, and “A Classical Cabaret” concert in collaboration with the St. Louis Black Repertory Theatre Company as part of their New Works Festival. Mr. McNichols ended 2016 with being selected as an Regional Arts Commission Fellowship Artist Grant recipient. Another highlight of 2016 performance was singing Chucho in “Lucrezia” with St. Louis’ Gateway Opera, for which he was acclaimed for having a “booming bass” (Ladue News) that’s “rich and powerful” (Broadway World). He has also been proving himself to be a versatile performer through show-stopping performances as the Narrator in the Afro-punk-rock musical “Passing Strange” at the Edison Theatre (St. Louis) and Fred Graham/Petruchio in “Kiss Me, Kate” with Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre (Kansas City, MO).
In 2015, Mr. McNichols showed his versatility as a performer, portraying roles such as the title character in Phillip Hayes Dean’s two-man play “Paul Robeson” with the St. Louis Black Repertory Company, as well as Tonton Julian in the company’s award-winning production of “Once on This Island”. The success of Mr. McNichols’ performances in “Paul Robeson” led him to reprise the role at the University of Southern Indiana Edwardsville.
In 2014, Mr. McNichols returned to Lyric Opera of Kansas City as Baron Douphol in “La traviata”, earning praise as “a welcome presence on the stage…with a lush bass-baritone voice” (KC Independent). Other highlights from 2014 include Fred and Ken in “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” with New Theater Restaurant (Overland Park, KS), the baritone soloist in “Carmina Burana” with Missouri Southern State University, and the bass soloist in Mozart’s “Requiem” with Lawrence Civic Choir. Notable highlights from 2013 are Mr. McNichols’ debuts including Springfield Regional Opera as Don Alfonso in “Così fan tutte”, Booker T. Washington in “Ragtime” with Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, and Coalhouse Walker in “Ragtime” with Theatre Lawrence.