With his powerful voice and commanding stage presence, baritone Jacob Lassetter enjoys an exciting and vibrant career on both the operatic and concert stage. Critics have praised his dignified characterizations, his soaring high range, and his deep, rich tone quality.
In the summer of 2016 Dr. Lassetter will sing the title role in Mendelssohn’s Elijah as a guest artist with the Bassi Brugnatelli International Conducting and Singing Symposium in Robbiate, Italy. Other performances this season include Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9 at the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass at St. Andrew Lutheran in Mahtomedi, Minnesota. Earlier in 2015 he made his Wagner debut in the role of Wolfram in Tannhäuser with Apotheosis Opera in New York City, and returned to the Rochester Choral Arts Ensemble to debut as baritone soloist in Bach’s Mass in B Minor. In 2014 Dr. Lassetter returned to Music by the Lake to sing his first Horace Tabor in The Ballad of Baby Doe. In 2013 he debuted as baritone soloist in Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast at Luther College, and he reprised his critically acclaimed interpretation of the baritone solos in Orff’s Carmina Burana with both Ottumwa Symphony Orchestra and Grinnell Symphony Orchestra. In 2012 Dr. Lassetter sang his signature role of Germont in La Traviata with Opera Theatre of the Rockies, which he had previously sung with Music by the Lake, and in his Italian debut at the Teatro Accademico in Castelfranco Veneto.
Other performances in 2012 included returns to the Peninsula Music Festival as baritone soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9, and to the Rochester Choral Arts Ensemble in Hadyn’s Lord Nelson Mass. In 2011 he was baritone soloist in Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Rochester Choral Arts Ensemble, as well as the Chicago Bar Association Symphony Orchestra at Orchestra Hall in Chicago, where he also performed Fauré’s Requiem with Manhattan Concert Productions. Additional performances in 2011 included Verdi’s Requiem with the Peninsula Music Festival and Mozart’s Requiem with Coe College.
Dr. Lassetter’s additional operatic repertoire includes the title of roles in Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Le Nozze di Figaro, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, Don Alfonso in Cosi fan tutte, and Griswold in Dominick Argento’s The Voyage of Edgar Allan Poe. Other concert credits include Handel’s Messiah, and Bach’s St. John Passion and St. Matthew Passion. A frequent recitalist, he made his debut at New York City’s Carnegie Hall in 2008 alongside his wife, soprano Karen Kanakis.
Dr. Lassetter has been a Semi-finalist in the Marguerite McCammon Voice Competition, a Regional Finalist in the National Association of Teachers of Singing Artist Award Competition, and received the Encouragement Award from the Southern Ohio District of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He is an alumnus of the Young Artist Programs of Chautauqua Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and Utah Festival Opera.
Dr. Lassetter holds a Bachelor of Music degree, magna cum laude, from Louisiana State University, the Master of Music degree from The University of North Texas, and the Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He currently serves as Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.