Celebrated for his “brilliant” and “booming” voice, Bass-Baritone Devon Russo performs frequently as a soloist and ensemble member in Opera, Contemporary Music, and Early Music throughout the United States and Europe. Onstage, he has performed the roles of Johannes "Pa" Zegner (Proving Up), Judge Turpin (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street), Sam (Trouble in Tahiti), Oloferne (La Giuditta), Papageno (Die Zauberflӧte), the Drunken Poet and Hymen (The Fairy-Queen), and Arbas in Lully’s Cadmus et Hermione and the title roles in Gianni Schicchi, Signor Deluso, Le Carnaval Mascarade and Dido and Aeneas. With a particular love for Handel’s operas and oratorios, he has sung Tirenio (Il Pastor Fido), Manoah (Samson), Farasmane (Radamisto) and Argante (Rinaldo). He has performed with the Metropolitan Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, Trinity Repertory Company, Boston Early Music Festival, Odyssey Opera, Boston University Opera Institute, Opera in Williamsburg, Opera Providence, and Salt Marsh Opera.
In concert, he has sung the baritone and bass solos in Carmina Burana, Vaughan William’s Fantasia on Christmas Carols and Five Mystical Songs, Faure’s Requiem, Durufle Requiem, Cherubini’s Messa Solenne in Do Maggiore, Haydn’s Paukenmesse, Cacilienmesse, & Missa in Angustiis “Lord Nelson Mass”, Finzi’s In Terra Pax, Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem, Bach’s Weihnachts-Oratorium, Markus-Passion as Jesus, & Cantatas BWV 147 & 65, the title role in Mendelssohn's Elijah, the bass solo in Handel's Messiah, as well as singing the title role in a concert of scenes from Wagner's Der fliegende Holländer. He has performed with Seraphic Fire, the Sante Fe Desert Chorale, Ensemble Altera, Chorus of Westerly, Quicksilver Baroque, Brevitas, the Rhode Island Civic Chorale and Orchestra, Musica Dolce and the Star Island Chamber Music Festival, Et al., the Blacksburg Master’s Chorale, Upper Valley Baroque, the Masterworks Chorale, Harvard pro Musica, the Nashua Choral Society, Cantata Singers in Boston, the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, and has rostered with the New York Philharmonic Chorus and The Crossing.
Devon has taken part in the Internationalen Sommerakademie am Mozarteum Salzburg, Boston Early Music Festival Young Artist Program, the Voces8 Choral Scholar Programme, Académie Orford Musique, the Seraphic Fire Professional Choral Institute at the Aspen Music Festival and School, Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute, Source Song Festival, the Manhattan Opera Studio Summer Festival, Singing Down the Barriers at the University of Michigan with the Hampsong Foundation, the Amherst Early Music Festival Opera Project and Winter Workshop, the Haymarket Opera Summer Institute, the Baroque Opera Workshop at Queen’s College and Connecticut Lyric Opera's Young Artist Program. He has been a vocal apprentice at the Nahant Music Festival and a Choral Scholar with the Oratorio Society of New York, the Berkshire Choral Festival, and Trinity Church (Newport, RI). Devon is currently a Choral Scholar at Marsh Chapel in Boston, locally, he performs both as a soloist and an ensemble member with the Schola Cantorum at St. Stephen’s (Providence, RI), Ensemble Altera, the Gregorian Concert Choir at the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul, and with Collegium Ancora the ensemble-in-residence at Grace Church Providence.
Devon has performed in many world class venues including Carnegie Hall, Boston’s Symphony Hall, Jordan Hall, the Boston Opera House, St. John the Divine (NYC), Marsh Chapel (Boston), the Temple of Dendur at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and at Tanglewood. He was a Semifinalist in the Lyndon Woodside Oratorio-Solo Competition in 2023, The National First Place Winner of The American Prize in Voice Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award in 2023 and in 2012 was the runner up for the NATS Artist Awards Competition. He currently studies with Penelope Bitzas and has studied with Mark Oswald and Mark Conley. Musical coaches include Christian Immler and Dashon Burton. He has performed in productions directed by Anne Bogart, Gilbert Blin, and Benjamin Luxon. He has sung in masterclasses presented by Frederica von Stade, Thomas Hampson, Ryan McKinny and Tom Chipullo. A passionate educator and conductor, he is currently the Director of Choral Activities at Bryant University, the Artist-Teacher in Classical Voice at the University of Rhode Island, the Assistant Conductor for the Handel and Haydn Society Youth Chorus, a part of the voice faculty at Providence College, and was a member of the voice faculty for many years at the Community College of Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Philharmonic Music School and South Shore Conservatory. Many of his students move on to study in conservatories and universities while performing and placing with major state and national choirs and competitions. Devon earned his Doctor of Musical Arts in Vocal Performance at Boston University, his Master’s in Vocal Performance from the Manhattan School of Music and Bachelors in Vocal Performance and Music Education from the University of Rhode Island.