Creator Profile

Davóne Tines

Heralded as a “singer of immense power and fervor” by The Los Angeles Times and a “charismatic, full-voiced bass-baritone” by The New York Times, Davóne Tines has come to international attention as a path-breaking artist whose work not only encompasses a diverse repertoire but also explores the social issues of today. As a black, gay, classically trained performer at the intersection of many histories, cultures, and aesthetics, his work blends opera, art song, contemporary classical, spirituals, gospel, and songs of protest, as a means to tell a deeply personal story of perseverance that connects to all of humanity.

Mr. Tines is co-creator of The Black Clown, a music theater experience inspired by Langston Hughes’ poem of the same name that animates a black man’s resilience against America’s legacy of oppression by fusing vaudeville, opera, jazz, and spirituals to bring Hughes’ verse to life onstage. The piece was commissioned and premiered by The American Repertory Theater and was presented at Lincoln Center in 2019. As a founding core member of the American Modern Opera Company, Davóne Tines has been featured in productions including Henze’s El Cimarrón and John Adams’ Nativity Reconsidered, both presented by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and in the original work Were You There with music by Matthew Aucoin and Michael Schachter.

He has premiered works created by today’s leading living composers and directors including Terence Blanchard and Kasi Lemmons’s Fire Shut Up In My Bones, based on the memoir of New York Times op-ed columnist Charles M. Blow, at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; and John Adams and Peter Sellars’s Girls of the Golden West at San Francisco Opera and the Dutch National Opera, where he also received wide acclaim for his performances in the world premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s Only the Sound Remains, directed by Peter Sellars. His concert appearances include performances of John Adams’ El Niño with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Kaija Saariaho’s True Fire with the Orchestre national de France, Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex with Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Royal Swedish Orchestra, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Michael Tilson Thomas leading the San Francisco Symphony and a program exploring the Music of Resistance by George Crumb, Julius Eastman, Dmitri Shostakovich, and Caroline Shaw also with members of the San Francisco Symphony.

Mr. Tines is a winner of the 2020 Sphinx Medal of Excellence, recognizing extraordinary classical musicians of color. He also received the 2018 Emerging Artists Award from Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and is a graduate of Harvard University and The Juilliard School.

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