Most effective was Andrew Foster-Williams, the bass-baritone in “Messiah,” who dispatched the quavering figures depicting fire and rage with full-bodied tone despite Mr. Labadie’s brisk tempos and was just as effective intoning the serene “great light” seen by “the people that walked in darkness.” The New York Times, James R. Oestreich
Andrew Foster-Williams, has grit and a bit of a growl to his voice, just what you want from a biblical prophet. He was ferocious in his aria likening God to a hammer, then melting in ‘It is enough’, when he asks the Lord to take away his life. The Boston Globe, Jeffrey Ganz
Bass-baritone Andrew Foster-Williams enjoys a vibrant career on both the opera and concert stage and is graced with a vocal versatility that allows him to present a repertoire ranging from the classics of Bach, Gluck, Handel, and Mozart through to more recent masters such as Britten, Debussy, Stravinsky, and Wagner.
Andrew Foster-Williams’ career, initially built on his strong Baroque credentials, has in recent seasons found a new dramatic direction with successes as Pizarro (Fidelio) at Theater an der Wien and Philharmonie de Paris and a unanimously praised debut as Telramund in Wagner’s Lohengrin under esteemed conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin at the Lanaudière Festival. A subsequent portrayal of Captain Balstrode in Christoph Loy’s divisive new production of Peter Grimes at Theater an der Wien alongside acclaimed performances as Nick Shadow (The Rake’s Progress), Gunther (Götterdämmerung), and Golaud (Pelléas et Mélisande) have further enhanced a highly regarded operatic profile.
Mr. Foster-Williams’ dramatic capacity has earned the respect of many of the most acclaimed stage directors as he “holds the attention of the audience with the energy of someone who has great experience, and with sensational vocal ability, which he uses with total freedom…” (Opéra). He frequently is sought after by David Alden, Barrie Kosky, Christof Loy, David Pountney, and Deborah Warner.
An impressive line-up of concert invitations has taken Andrew Foster-Williams to major stages with the most celebrated orchestras and conductors of our day including the Cleveland Orchestra and Franz Welser-Möst, Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Salzburg Mozarteum with Ivor Bolton, San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas, Concertgebouw Orkest with Richard Egarr, Hong Kong Philharmonic under Edo de Waart, and the London Symphony Orchestra with Sir Colin Davis.
Andrew Foster-Williams offers a concert repertoire as diverse as it is broad including Bach’s Matthäus-Passion and Johannes-Passion, Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Britten’s War Requiem, Haydn’s Die Jahreszeiten, Janáček’s Glagolitic Mass, Mahler’s Eighth Symphony, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast. Andrew Foster-Williams “opened the bass-baritone line not like a pompous oratorio singer but like a character in an opera – speaking to the audience, drawing us in, making the words mean something” (The Washington Post). The professional esteem and critical success he has garnered have yielded collaborations with William Christie, Teodor Currentzis, Phillipe Herreweghe, Paul McCreesh, Cornelius Meister, Hervé Niquet, Vasily Petrenko, Ulf Schirmer, and Emmanuel Villaume among many others.
Boasting an extensive discography, commercial releases include Beethoven’s Cantata on the Death of Emperor Joseph II with the San Francisco Symphony (Tilson Thomas) released on SFSMedia, The Seasons with the London Symphony Orchestra (Davis) on LSO Live, and most recently, HMS Pinafore with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera (Egarr) on Linn. Performances captured on DVD include the Gramophone Award winning The Fairy Queen with Glyndebourne Festival Opera (Christie).
Highlights of the 2016-17 season include a pastiche at the Opéra national Bordeaux on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the death of Cervantes, Les Voyages de Don Quichotte, singing the title role in a staged survey of music written by Falla, Massenet, Ravel, Strauss under the baton of Marc Minkowski as well as Escamillo in a new production of Carmen staged by Kasper Holten on the lake at the Bregenz Festival.
On the concert stage, the artist is heard in performances of Bach’s Johannes-Passion with the Cleveland Orchestra under Franz Welser-Möst, Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius with the Minnesota Orchestra and Edo de Waart, Beethoven’s “Coronation” Mass with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Richard Egarr, and Mendelssohn’s Elijah at the National Forum of Music in Wrocław, Poland under the baton of Paul McCreesh and with the Charlotte Symphony conducted by Giancarlo Guerrero.