Vocalist - Baritone
Acclaim
 
A Baroque Battle of the Sexes with American Bach Soloists

“William Sharp, in a perfectly judged performance, found just the right blend of insouciance, pensiveness, and droll self-mockery as the composer’s spokesman. His suave and subtly muscular tone, earnest gestures, and quizzically amused expressions illuminated the lively and varied contours of the piece.... As ironic and light-fingered as Les Femmes was for much of the way, Sharp and an ensemble of four (flute, violin, viola de gamba, and harpsichord) found some richly shadowed terrain along the way. An ode to sleep (‘Son of the night and of silence/Father of the sweetest peace’) took on a meditative cast. Sharp’s jaunty phrasing in a final recitative brought out the bright affirming rhymes of Pierre-Charles Roy’s French text.”

Steven Winn, San Francisco Classical Voice
Honoring a Musical Master

“Among the soloists [was] … veteran baritone William Sharp (whose voice seems to grow brighter and sweeter with age).”

Barrymore Laurence Scherer, Wall Street Journal
BPO’s tribute to Ives gets below the surface of the music

“Baritone William Sharp’s performance of five gentle Ives songs orchestrated by John Adams was a highlight. Sharp, an Ives specialist, has a hearty voice and an unpretentious approach that made me think of Thomas Hampson.”

Mary Kunz Goldman, Buffalo News
American Bach Soloists Perform the St. Matthew Passion

“Baritone William Sharp was excellent as Christ, especially in passages such as the one where Christ speaks of his forthcoming betrayal by one of his disciples.”

James Roy MacBean, Berkeley Daily Planet
Dryden Ensemble Presents a “Cantata Fest” For an Afternoon of J.S. Bach’s Music

“Baritone William Sharp … brought drama and expression to Bach’s cantata arias. Clearly at ease with them, Sharp was a picture of reassurance in vocal duets.... Mr. Sharp demonstrated [his] technique in the coloratura sections of the aria selection for Cantata No. 57.... [He] sang with character and showed himself to be a real storyteller.”

Nancy Plum, Town Topics
UW Musicians Explore the Strange World of Charles Ives
“The highlight of the evening was an appearance by baritone William Sharp, who joined the orchestra for Ives’ Orchestral Songs.… Sharp’s smooth baritone easily sailed over the orchestra throughout the songs, illuminating spoken quotations by philosopher Henry David Thoreau (a fellow New Englander whom Ives greatly admired) as well as lyrical arrangements of ‘Down East’ and ‘At the River’, two traditional hymns. The most vivid song in the cycle, ‘At the River’ combined Sharp’s melodic vocal line with broad strokes of sound from the orchestra. Rich swells in the strings and a sprinkling of cool piano notes popped out at opportune moments to accentuate Sharp’s phrases.”
Dana Wen, SunBreak
Opera Lafayette uncovers Monsigny work once sung by Marie-Antionette
"William Sharp, as Richard, was up to his usual standard, delivering a musically astute performance, filled with subtle, communicative inflections."
Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun
Opera Lafayette presents 'Le Roi et le Fermier'
"Sharp sang with the clear, handsome timbre he has possessed over a long career."
Joe Banno, Washington Post
Baltimore Symphony program showcases American music, familiar and rare
"Copland's ‘Old American Songs,' an endearing souvenir of 19th century gems, requires a vocal soloist with a thoroughly natural, highly communicative style. That's exactly what the BSO had in baritone William Sharp. This was a long overdue engagement -- the exemplary singer, who teaches at the Peabody Conservatory, last appeared with the orchestra in 1992.... His articulation was so clear, his phrasing so genial and telling that he communicated the essence of each of the seven songs with ease. He achieved particularly exquisite results in the ballad ‘Long Time Ago,' but was just as impressive letting loose in ‘I Bought Me a Cat' and other lighthearted items."
Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun
PostClassical Ensemble makes beautiful sense of Charles Ives's music
"With Jeremy Denk at the piano, baritone William Sharp brought ravishing nuances of timbre coupled with total control and telling dramatic gestures to Ives's songs. Sharp's most poignant, finely shaded singing came with settings of 'Feldeinsamkeit,' by Brahms and Ives's version in German romantic style; 'At the River,' the composer's simple version of an old American folk hymn; and 'General William Booth Enters into Heaven,' orchestrated by the American composer John Adams. Ever the supreme accompanist, Denk responded to every facet of Sharp's singing."
Cecelia Porter, Washington Post
Peabody Trio program offers youthful and mature Mahler
"Sharp, a superbly communicative vocal artist, reached deeply into the heart of the texts as he sculpted the melodic lines."
Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun
Classical Review: Soundings' Innovative, Theme-based Programming Continues to Awe
"In the Mahler cycle, more well-known in its orchestral version, Knopp and baritone William Sharp presented a beautifully intimate rendition that, stripped of Mahler's late romantic obsession with symphonic color, runs the gamut from fluent Bach-like counterpoint to Schumannesque lyricism to proto-Schoenbergian dissonance, all aimed at the gentle emotional surrender of the final song."
Wayne Lee Gay, D Magazine
"I probably started singing seriously when I was 16 or so and got interested in early music, for one thing, but also other music. I started listening to classical music because I found it beautiful, and I just liked to listen to it. I loved Bach, I loved Schubert...that sort of stuff. But I did what everyone does in graduate school. I was focused on opera singing, because everyone has the idea that that's what you do."
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Caitlin Vincent, Opera Pulse
John Musto's The Inspector - Wolf Trap Opera
"As Tancredi's perpetually hungry buddy, Cosimo, baritone William Sharp gave a downright brilliant performance. In addition to creating a note-perfect, endearing characterization, he offered a sure and resonant voice, phrasing enlivened by dramatic shading and superb diction."
Tim Smith, Opera News
When Words Got in the Way
"Vale Rideout was a suitably bemused Tancredi, and William Sharp was sharp-edged as Cosimo."
Heidi Waleson, Wall Street Journal
Wolf Trap premieres Gogol-inspired opera
"... baritone William Sharp makes the most of the somewhat underwritten role of the teacher disguised as Tancredi's servant, Cosimo."
Mike Silverman, Associated Press
Wolf Trap's 'Inspector' sparkles in gala debut
"As Cosimo, Tancredi's former teacher and now fugitive accomplice, baritone William Sharp is an intriguing blend of practical and bumbling. He gets a bit less to sing than the other major characters, but adds vocal heft to the various brief ensembles that pop up just about everywhere in this opera, which, via clever deployment of multiple voices, operates successfully without an actual chorus."
Terry Ponick, Washington Times
Review: Le Déserteur
"The revelation of the disc is the Alexis of William Sharp. He bursts forth here: voice of enthralling beauty, wondrous line, intensity, comprehension of text, perfect diction ... a singing star is born."
Dominique Joucken, Classica
Review
"The three pieces for baritone offer the most uncomplicatedly pleasurable experiences on the disc. Litany is a textbook-perfect display of deadpan humor, Billy Cotton's deliciously straight-faced poem treated with finger-tip delicacy by Wheeler and tongue-in-cheek resourcefulness by William Sharp. Sharp is no less enticing in what Wheeler describes as the ‘lover's serenade' of Serenata. A 1993 setting of five poems by Mark Van Doren, it boasts exquisitely redolent instrumental accompaniment and fancy-free poetry in vocal lines that approvingly call to mind Oscar Hammerstein II's winning way with the vernacular."
Michael Quinn, The Classical Review
Bethlehem Bach Festival opener, "Bach and Mary, Mother of God,' lovingly performed
"The ringing baritone voice of William Sharp was highlighted in Cantata BWV 158, especially in his compelling duet with Lamoreaux, ‘Welt, ade,' accompanied by Watt and Field in a particularly virtuosic obbligato. Sharp and Lamoreaux also sang beautifully in Bach's short but sweet A Major Mass, also known as a Missa Brevis. Short because it sets only the Kyrie and Gloria sections required by Lutheran usage, sweet in its sheer nobility and tenderness."
Steve Siegel, Morning Call
Sublime "Passion"
"And William Sharp was hauntingly effective as a detached, resigned, and tired Jesus."
Jonathan Rhodes Lee, San Francisco Classical Voice
21st Century Consort: "Currier and Ives"
"The songs presented Saturday were so deeply rooted in American life that they have become incredibly poignant over time, despite their occasional silliness, and baritone William Sharp beautifully captured their character."
Sophia Vastek, Ionarts
Best and Brightest of Bernstein
"Perhaps the most moving moment of the entire evening came with Sharp standing utterly still while singing the setting of Walt Whitman's regret-filled poem 'To What You Said' from Bernstein's cycle Songfest."
David Bratman, San Francisco Classical Voice
Lafayette's frothy delivery delights at Kennedy Center
"William Sharp, the baritone, was vocally and visually elegant as Discord ..."
Anne Midgette, Washington Post
Revolution in reverse, under cool Vt. skies
"The baritone William Sharp, partnered by pianist Julio Elizalde, also performed the brief 'Kaddisch’' from Ravel’s 'Deux Melodies Hebraiques.’' Sharp sang with rich interiority and a tone that seemed deftly poised between the world of art song and the Jewish liturgical tradition of chazzanut."
Jeremy Eichler, Boston Globe
Don Quixote Rides Again with the Folger Consort
"Baritone William Sharp was at his best in these broadly comic songs, grimacing and blustery on the hearty guffaws of Sancho in 'Hat mich der große Menschenfresser', for example. Sharp adapted his elegant and subtle voice to a range of humorous songs, from the mock-epic tribute of Sancho to his donkey (Telemann's 'Mein Esel ist das beste Tier') to the inebriated stagger of D'Urfey's 'The Doctor is feed for a Dangerous Draught', sung in praise of a wine bottle."
Charles T. Downey, Ionarts
"The warm sound and insightful phrasing of baritone William Sharp got right to the heart of Schumann's song cycle Liederkreis Wendesday night at Peabody. It was a remarkable example of the vocal art." Read More...
Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun
"The most effective pieces were calling cards for two of Mr. Bolcom's operas. From 'McTeague,' Mr. Sharp gave a deftly characterized account of the retributive 'Jehosophat,' and Ms. Gruber brought a mad eroticism to 'Golden Babies.'" Read More...
Allan Kozinn, New York Times
"Among soloists, hearing William Sharp's warm baritone was like greeting an old friend ..." Read More...
David Patrick Stearns, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Baritone William Sharp was eloquent in composer Nicholas Maw's setting of Robert Browning's poem about the death of love ('Two in the Campagna')." [Festival of Contemporary Music at Tanglewood]
Boston Globe
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