This summer, baritone Jacob Scharfman joins the Merola Opera Program at San Francisco Opera to sing Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress. In May, he earned his Master of Music and a Novick Career Grant from The Juilliard School. Mr. Scharfman was a National Semi-Finalist in the 2018 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and sang on the Met Stage in April.
Opera News has lauded Mr. Scharfman’s “attractive, rounded baritone” and Voce di Meche proclaims him “irresistible… Mr. Scharfman’s performance was marked by the expansiveness of a generous spirit and a personal involvement with the text and music.” In his native Boston, he has earned praise for his “rich, ringing baritone” (Classical Review), a voice “certain to gain popularity… well-rounded and rich, maintaining clarity and precision throughout his entire range” (Musical Intelligencer).
During the 2017-18 academic year at Juilliard, Mr. Scharfman sang Nardo in Mozart’s La finta giardiniera and covered Fluth in Nicolai’s Merry Wives of Windsor. Honored with Juilliard’s Risë Stevens and Mitzi Foundation scholarships, he traveled to Taiwan for a recital tour in December 2017. Mr. Scharfman spent the summer of 2017 as a Studio Artist with Central City Opera in Colorado, winning the Iris Henwood Richards Memorial Award for his dedication and collegiality. During Juilliard's 2016-17 season, Mr. Scharfman enjoyed his Alice Tully Hall debut as Pallante in Handel’s Agrippina and covered Steward in Jonathan Dove’s Flight. He has sung masterclasses with Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Pablo Heras-Casado (both live-streamed at Medici.tv) and participated in a recital of protest songs with the New York Festival of Song, repeated at his Merkin Hall and Hudson Hall debuts in February 2018.
Recent operatic credits include Charlie in Heggie’s Three Decembers with Opera Fayetteville; Rugby in Vaughan Williams’ Sir John in Love with Odyssey Opera; Mr. Webb in Rorem’s Our Town with Boston Opera Collaborative; and Yeletsky in Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades with Harvard’s Lowell House. Jacob has won prizes at competitions held by Metrowest Opera, the Arlington Philharmonic Society, and Piccola Opera. He has enjoyed concert engagements with Boston Baroque, the Harvard-Radcliffe Chorus, the Brown University Chorus, Boston University’s Marsh Chapel, and Trinity Church Boston. Mr. Scharfman is a graduate of Brown University, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Music and Italian Studies. He spent a year abroad at the Università di Bologna.