Miles Mykkanen was a knockout as Lensky. The Russian language brought out a squillante quality in his tenor, thrilling to hear in the confines of the Willson Theater. The lyric intensity of his singing made each moment count, and the duel-scene aria was a stretch of sheer vocal gold.
Opera News, Fred Cohn
Throughout, Mykkanen maintains a formidable brightness that allows his character to believably fight off the understandable despair that he feels at each more demoralizing turn. When he delivers the show’s final song, “Make Our Garden Grow,” all of the earned emotion comes seeping out of his voice in an overwhelmingly affecting way. His voice is strikingly pure, but also powerful, allowing the audience to accept that his otherworldly innocence is in fact authentic.
Broadway World, Matt Tamanini
Miles Mykkanen has garnered recognition on the world’s concert and operatic stages for his “focused, full-voiced tenor” (The New York Times). Of his performances in Eugene Onegin at the Juilliard School, Opera News wrote, “Mykkanen was a knockout as Lensky. The lyric intensity of his singing made each moment count, and the duel- scene aria was a stretch of sheer vocal gold.”
The 2016-2017 season sees Miles Mykkanen performing the title role in a fully- staged production of Bernstein’s Candide with the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and Belmonte in Opera Columbus’ new production of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail. He makes his debut with the St. Thomas Church 5th Avenue Choir of Men and Boys and Concert Royal in performances of Händel’s Messiah and returns to the recital stage with Steven Blier under the auspices of the New York Festival of Song.
Mr. Mykkanen’s opera credits include championing new work in addition to leading roles drawn from the classic repertoire. He gave the world premiere of Matthew Aucoin’s Crossing at the American Repertory Theatre directed by Diane Paulus and Opera News wrote, “Miles Mykkanen’s work was especially distinctive: his burnished high tenor seemed like the organizing principle around which the other voices cohered.” He was involved in the world premieres of Ricky Ian Gordon’s Twenty-Seven and Jack Perla’s Shalimar the Clown. Other operatic highlights include performances of Die Zauberflöte, Eugene Onegin, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Ariadne auf Naxos, Les mamelles de Tirésias, La traviata, Le nozze di Figaro, La finta giardiniera, Der Kaiser von Atlantis, The Cunning Little Vixen, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Le donne curiose, A Hand of Bridge, and Down in the Valley. The tenor has sung with Wolf Trap Opera Company, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Pine Mountain Music Festival, and Juilliard Opera.
Miles Mykkanen celebrated his Carnegie Hall recital debut last year, and has performed with the New World Symphony, New York Festival of Song, National Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Juilliard415, and at the Franz Schubert Institut, Royal Irish Academy of Music, and Interlochen Academy. His rich and varied concert repertoire includes Bach’s Magnificat, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Brahms’ Liebeslieder Waltzes, Britten’s Canticle II: Abraham and Isaac and Canticle V: The Death of St. Narcissus, Händel’s Messiah, Schubert’s Auf dem Strom, and Stravinsky’s Cantata.
PBS Great Performances produced a documentary of Renée Fleming’s American Voices festival in 2015, featuring Miles Mykkanen in a master class with Tony Award-winner Sutton Foster. He also was seen on Medici.tv in Juilliard’s live-stream master classes with Renée Fleming and Fabio Luisi, respectively.
Currently in Juilliard’s esteemed Artist Diploma in Opera Studies program working with Stephen Wadsworth and Brian Zeger, Miles Mykkanen earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from the school under the tutelage of Cynthia Hoffmann. He was a 2009 youngARTS Gold Winner in Voice and Juilliard has distinguished the tenor as a winner of the 2016 Juilliard Honors Recital, as a Toulmin Foundation Scholar, and with the Joseph W. Polisi Award, named for the institution’s president, for exemplifying the school’s values of the “artist as citizen.”
Bill Palant, Étude Arts
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